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Draft PPS18: Renewable Energy
Annex 1 Small Hydro: Information to Accompany a Planning Application

E32. A planning application for a hydro development could usefully include the following information:
  • maps, diagrams and drawings showing the location and design of intake, pipeline, turbine and turbine house, weirs, tailrace and security fencing and lighting for urban schemes;
  • details of air and noise emissions and an assessment of their impacts;
  • photomontage of intake;
  • grid connection works, including transformer and transmission lines;
  • provision for fish passes (where required);
  • details of vehicular access and vehicular movement;
  • landscaping provisions; and,
  • measures for management of the site during the construction phase and for long term maintenance.

Environmental Impact Assessment

E33. The Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1999 Opens link in a new browser window include “installations for hydroelectric energy production” within Schedule 2(3)(i). Those with a generating capacity of over 500kW (0.5MW) must be screened for the need for EIA. Where a screening opinion is required, Schedule 3 to the EIA Regulations provides selection criteria for screening Schedule 2 development.
E34. An EIA is often required by EHS Water Management Unit as part of the application for an Abstraction Licence. Consultation between statutory agencies at the scoping stage will minimise duplication of effort. In many cases, one Environmental Statement will be sufficient for both purposes.
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