The Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, as the competent authority, is currently preparing plans for the development of Offshore Renewable Energy in Ireland. The plan will take into account offshore wind, wave and tidal energy technologies in all viable locations in Irish waters as detailed in the scoping document.
In accordance with the EU Directive 2001/42/EC on the Assessment of the Effects of Certain Plans and Programmes on the Environment, transposed into Irish Law under the Statutory Instrument S.I. No. 435 of 2004, a Strategic Environmental Assessment is required for plans and programmes which:
- Are likely to have significant effects on the environment
- Are prepared for agriculture, forestry, fisheries, energy, industry, transport, waste management, water management, telecoms, tourism, town and country planning or land use, and which sets the framework for future development consents requiring an EIA or an ‘appropriate assessment’ in accordance with the Habitats Directive.
- Are subject to preparation and/or adoption by national, regional or local authorities.
Based on the following it has been determined that an SEA is required for the OREDP:
- The OREDP will be prepared for energy related development.
- The OREDP will contain scenarios for the development of offshore renewable energy, which could, in some areas off the coast of Ireland give rise to significant environmental effects.
- The OREDP is being prepared by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (DCENR) for adoption at a national level.
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