Planning and Development Act 2000

F954[Proposed development and imperative reasons of overriding public interest.

177AA

177AA. (1) Where, notwithstanding a determination by a competent authority that a proposed development will adversely affect F955[the integrity of] a European site, and in the absence of alternative solutions, a competent authority considers that consent should nevertheless be given for the proposed development for imperative reasons of overriding public interest, the authority shall

(a) F956[set out the] imperative reasons of overriding public interest that necessitate the giving of consent for the proposed development,

(b) propose the compensatory measures that are necessary to ensure that the overall coherence of the Natura 2000 network is protected,

(c) prepare a statement of case that imperative reasons of overriding public interest exist and of the compensatory measures that are required,

(d) forward the said statement to the Minister together with a copy of the planning application and Natura impact statement.

(2) A statement of case referred to in subsection (1)(d) shall specify

(a) the considerations that led to the assessment by the competent authority that the proposed development would adversely affect the integrity of a European site,

(b) the reasons for the forming of the view by the competent authority that there are no alternative solutions (including the option of not giving consent for the proposed development),

(c) the reasons for the forming of the view by the competent authority that imperative reasons of overriding public interest apply to the proposed development,

(d) compensatory measures that are being proposed as necessary to ensure the overall coherence of Natura 2000 including, if appropriate, the provision of compensatory habitat and the conditions to which any consent for proposed development shall be subject requiring that the compensatory measures are carried out.

(3) In relation to a European site that does not host a priority natural habitat type or priority species, the imperative reasons of overriding public interest may include those of a social or economic nature.

(4) In relation to a European site that hosts a priority natural habitat type or priority species, the only imperative reasons of overriding public interest that may be considered are those relating to

(a) human health,

(b) public safety,

(c) beneficial consequences of primary importance to the environment, or

(d) subject to subsection (7), having obtained an opinion from the European Commission other imperative reasons of overriding public interest.

(5) A competent authority shall furnish a copy of the statement of case referred to in subsection (1) to an applicant for consent for proposed development.

F956[(6) A competent authority shall make a statement of case, referred to in subsection (1), available for inspection by members of the public at the offices of the authority during its public opening hours and may also publish the statement on the internet.]

(7) In invoking imperative reasons of overriding public interest under subsection (4)(d) the competent authority shall advise the Minister why he or she should be satisfied to request an opinion from the European Commission.

(8) In this section and in sections 177AB and 177AC compensatory measures are measures proposed in the first instance by the applicant and then by a competent authority or the Minister, as the case may be, for the purposes of ensuring that the overall coherence of Natura 2000 is protected and such measures may include the provision of compensatory habitat.

(9) For the purposes of this section and sections 177AB and 177AC a competent authority may attach a condition to a grant of consent for proposed development relating to compensatory measures that the authority or the Minister may require which may include a condition requiring the making of contributions to finance the provision of compensatory measures and any such condition shall have effect as if it was attached to the grant of consent for proposed development, pursuant to the relevant provisions of this Act, that apply to such a grant of consent.]

Annotations

Amendments:

F954

Inserted (21.09.2011) by Planning and Development (Amendment) Act 2010 (30/2010), s. 57, S.I. No. 475 of 2011.

F955

Inserted (21.09.2011) by European Union (Environmental Impact Assessment and Habitats) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 473 of 2011), reg. 14(a)(i).

F956

Substituted (21.09.2011) by European Union (Environmental Impact Assessment and Habitats) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 473 of 2011), reg. 14(a)(ii) and (b).