ANIAR Ecology has considerable experience of the N2000 network, including N2000 site boundary mapping, evaluation of extensions and exclusions from N2000 sites, evaluation of the N2000 site conservation objectives and development impacts thereon. This experience underpins the preparation of scientific reports in relation to external appeals for N2000 sites and the preparation of Screening Reports and Natura Impact Statements (NIS).
The N2000 network supports a large number of SACs and SPAs across Ireland. These sites are protected under the EU Birds and Habitats Directives through the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011. The Birds and Natural Habitats Regulations state that where a plan or project may have an impact on a N2000 site a Screening Report, and Natura Impact Statement, may be required.
Screening Reports and Natura Impact Statements are necessary for a range of activities, plans and projects which may directly, indirectly or cumulatively impact upon a N2000 site. The successful completion of these assessments is critical to the Appropriate Assessment and consent process. The following elements are necessary for the preparation of Screening Reports and NIS’s:
- Consultation with relevant authorities
- Collation of existing literature, data and reports
- Gathering of additional data through field survey, as required
- Evaluation of data, information and impacts, following best practice criteria
- Comprehensive, clear and concise reporting.