Ecological Impact Assessment
We have completed a range of Ecological Impact Assessments for complex sites across the UK and are well versed in this elegant and effective method of reporting and assessment.
An ecological impact assessment is normally only required for larger development sites, or at a site that has been screened by the local planing authority and they have decided that an Environmental Impact Assessment will be required, which should include an assessment of the impact upon ecology. An ecological impact assessment would not normally require more survey effort in the field, but will require a formal assessment process of potential impacts of both the construction and operational phases of your development.
The principals of an ecological impact assessment are set out in documents published by the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management and are available here.
This is a step-by-step process starting with each ecological feature at the site, known as a receptor, being assigned a value relating to its nature conservation status, such as European Protected Species or ‘habitat of principal importance for the conservation of biodiversity’. The importance of the site for each receptor is then given on a geographical scale from Negligible value through to International value.
Any receptor for which the site is above ‘Local’ value will be considered further in the assessment process and the potential effects of the development will be characterised. Where the effect is considered to be significant, mitigation will be proposed to reduce the effect to an acceptable level. This is a very simplified description aimed to give you the broadest of outline on what is a very thorough process. All you may wish to know as a client is that your ecological impact assessment is in safe hands at Western Ecology. If you want a full discussion on the technical aspects of an ecological impact assessment , please get in touch with me as I am always happy to have a chat.
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