Northern Area Plan 2016: Remedies Judgement made on Draft Northern Area Plan and Draft Magherafelt Area Plan SEA Judicial Reviews
Published on Tue, 27 Nov 2007
The remedies hearing took place on 8 November 2007 and the judgment was handed down on 13 November 2007.
The Court accepted the Department’s argument that neither the Draft Magherafelt and Northern Area Plans nor the Environmental Assessment of Plans and Programmes Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2004 should be quashed and instead granted the following declarations:
- the designation of the Department of Environment (DOE) as ‘the consultation body’ under Regulation 4 of the 2004 Regulations does not properly transpose Articles 5.4 and 6.3 of the Directive, where DOE is also the responsible body that promotes the plan or programme;
- the absence of appropriate timeframes in Regulation 12 of the 2004 Regulations does not properly transpose the requirements of Article 6.2 of the SEA Directive.
- the Environmental Report prepared for the DNAP and DMAP is not in substantial compliance with the Schedule 2 of the 2004 Regulations and Article 5 and Annex 1 of the SEA Directive.
- the sequencing of the Environmental Report and the DNAP and DMAP was not in compliance with Regulations 11 and 12 of the 2004 Regulations and Article 4 and 6 of the SEA Directive.
The Department welcomes the ruling not to quash either the Plans or the Regulations and will now consider it and its implications in consultation with legal advisors.
Determination as to the feasibility of carrying out an Environmental Assessment
The Environmental Assessment for the Northern Area Plan 2016, which was published as a Technical Supplement to the Plan on 11 May 2005, has been the subject of a judicial review. The High Court delivered a judgment on 7th September 2007.
Planning Service has now conducted a review of its decision to carry out an environmental assessment of the draft plan under the terms of the Directive and the 2004 Regulations in light of the recent judgment of the High Court. As a result of that review, the Department of the Environment has now determined that it was not feasible to carry out an environmental assessment of the Draft Northern Area Plan 2015 in accordance with the Directive and the 2004 Regulations. The full non-feasibility determination and the Department’s paper setting out the case for the non-feasibility determination can be viewed using the links below.