Environmental Services

Waste Management

“One man’s waste might be another man’s gold”.

Greentrack has an extensive land bank available through our extensive farmer clientele. This allow us to provide innovative solutions to businesses who are producing waste sludge that can be land spread.

Greentrack have extensive experience in the land application of bio solids and other organic wastes that we term fertiliser. All land application is done under the management of a farm nutrient plan. Local authority and EPA consent is also secured when required.

 

The advent of Anaerobic Digester plants (AD plants) has given rise to another stream of organic fertiliser that must be land spread. Greentrack can provide advice and access to land banks for the land spreading of the AD digestate. Cross border movement of food material for the AD plant and the reverse movement of digestate can also be organised.

 

Licensing and Permitting

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We make applications for the following authorisation:

Waste Facility Permit

Waste Transport Permit

TFS Authorisation

Animal By Product Permit

 

Greentrack will assist our clients in identifying and achieving the necessary authorisation or licence to operate their business. This includes applications under Regulation (EC) No.1069/2009.

 

 

Appropriate Assessment Screening Reports and Natura Impact Statements

With the introduction of the Birds Directive in 1979 and the Habitats Directive in 1992 came the obligation to establish the Natura 2000 network of sites of highest biodiversity importance for rare and threatened habitats and species across the EU. In Ireland, the Natura 2000 network of European sites comprises Special Areas of Conservation (SACs, including candidate SACs), and Special Protection Areas (SPAs, including proposed SPAs). SACs are selected for the conservation of Annex I habitats (including priority types which are in danger of disappearance) and Annex II species (other than birds). SPAs are selected for the conservation of Annex I birds and other regularly occurring migratory birds and their habitats. The annexed habitats and species for which each site is selected correspond to the qualifying interests of the sites; from these the conservation objectives of the site are derived.

 

The Birds and Habitats Directives set out various procedures and obligations relating to the habitats and species of Natura 2000 sites. A key protection mechanism is the requirement to consider the possible nature conservation implications of any plan or project on the Natura 2000 site network before any decision is made to allow that plan or project to proceed. Each plan project must also take into consideration the possible effects it may have in combination with other plans and projects when going through the process known as appropriate assessment (AA). The concept of plan and project is extremely broad and is not limited to development planning and development management, covered by the Planning and Development Acts 2000-2006.

 

The obligation to undertake appropriate assessment derives from Article 6(3) and 6(4) of the Habitats Directive, and both involve a number of steps and tests that need to be applied in sequential order. AA is not a prohibition on new development or activities but involves a case-by-case examination of the implications for the Natura 2000 site and its conservation objectives. In general terms, implicit in Article 6(3) is an obligation to put concern for potential effects on Natura 2000 sites at the forefront of every decision made in relation to plans and projects at all stages, including decisions to provide funding or other support.

nis resizedThe first test is to establish whether, in relation to a particular plan or project, appropriate assessment is required, this is termed AA screening. Its purpose is to determine, on the basis of a preliminary assessment and objective criteria, whether a plan or project, alone and in combination with other plans or projects, could have significant effects on a Natura 2000 site in view of the site’s conservation objectives. The need to apply the precautionary principle in making any key decisions in relation to the tests of AA has been confirmed by European Court of Justice case law. Therefore, where significant effects are likely, uncertain or unknown at screening stage, AA will be required.

 

NIS 2 resizedAA is a focused and detailed impact assessment of the implications of the plan or project, alone and in combination with other plans and projects, on the integrity of a Natura 2000 site in view of its conservation objectives. There is no prescribed method for undertaking AA, or form or content for reporting. Case law has established that assessments should be undertaken on the basis of the best scientific evidence and methods. Accordingly, data and information on the project and on the site and an analysis of potential effects on the site must be obtained and presented in a Natura Impact Statement (NIS). It is the responsibility of the proponent of the plan or project to have the NIS prepared for submission to the competent authority, i.e. the consent authority.

 

Greentrack have extensive experience in the Appropiate Assessment Screening process and the preparation of Natura Impact Statements. We work with the NPWS to establish a feasible approach to each individual proposal.

 

Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) requirements derive from European Communities Directive 85/337/EEC (as amended by Directive 97/11/EC) on the assessment of the effects of certain public and private projects on the environment. The primary objective of the EIA Directive is to ensure that projects which are likely to have significant effects on the environment are subject to an assessment of their likely impacts.

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a process for anticipating the effects on the environment caused by a development. An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is the document produced as a result of that process.

Where effects are identified that are unacceptable, these can then be avoided or reduced during the design process. The Environmental Impact Assessment procedure commences at the project design stage where it is decided whether an Environmental Impact Statement is required. If it is required, then the scope of the study is determined, after which the EIS is prepared as part of the application for development consent. The competent authority examines the EIS, circulating copies to statutory consultees while also making it available to the public. The competent authority then makes its decision to refuse or grant permission or to seek additional information, having regard to the information contained in the EIS among other factors.

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Greentrack can produce the EIS and work with the applicant and the relevant planning authority to address all areas of concern.

 

 

 

Substitute Consent

“Substitute Consent” refers to a new provision contained in the Planning and Development (Amendment) Act 2010. “Substitute Consent” is a mechanism whereby a person can apply for retrospective permission for a project that would have required an Environmental Impact Assessment, Screening for Environmenatal Impact Assessment or Appropriate Assessment, as appropriate

In July 2008, the European Court of Justice ruled (case C-215/06, relating to Derrybrien Windfarm at Loughrea, Galway) that Ireland was in breach of EU law in permitting retention permission for projects accompanied by an Environmental Impact Assessment.

Following the ruling, the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government issued a Circular to Planning Authorities and to An Bord Pleanála, which advised that retention permission for developments requiring EIA should not be granted after 3rd July 2008.

The “Substitute Consent” procedure as provided in the Planning and Development (Amendment) Act 2010 seeks to provide a mechanism whereby the position in respect of EIA development can be regularised.

 

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Greentrack can produce the EIS and/or the NIS and also work with the applicant and the relevant planning authority to address all areas of concern during the substitute consent process.