A ‘Further Information Request’ FRI letter from a County Council is common to receive when you submit a Planning Application. Sometimes these letters will ask for ecological works to be carried out to ensure no protected species or habitats are affected by the proposed development. Reports such as Stage I Appropriate Assessment and Natura Impact Statements will be asked for if a site is within or close to a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) or Special Protected Area (SPA). These are site protected by the European Habitats Directive (1992). This is especially so for counties which have numerous SAC and SPA in their landscape area e.g. the southwest (Kerry, Cork, Limerick, Clare) and the west (Mayo, Galway, Sligo) and the northwest (Donegal). National Heritage Areas (NHAs) and Proposed NHAs are also afforded protected under the Wildlife Acts (1976-2018) and further information regarding these sites may also be sought.
If a building on a site needs to be demolished or altered a Council may ask for a Bat Survey to be carried out, or if an affected building or site that is close to a SAC designated for Lesser Horseshoe Bat may be affected, for example extensive lengths of hedgerows are proposed to be taken out and replaced by post and rail fence, or a site will have significant amounts of additional lighting. As Lesser Horseshoe Bat are sensitive to light and need a hedgerow to follow to avoid getting lost these are reasons why a proposed development would take impacts such as these into consideration.
Occasionally the Council will ask for an Ecological Impact Assessment (EcIA) as the development may be quite large, e.g. a housing estate, or become there is the possibility for species protected under the Wildlife Acts (1976-2018) on the site, e.g. badgers.
If you have received a Further Information Request from the Council for any of the above please Contact Us for a competitive quote.