The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recently published updated finalised Guidelines on the Information to be contained in Environmental Impact Assessment Reports (EIARs). The first Draft Guidelines on the information to be contained in Environmental Impact Statements were produced in 1995 (updated and published in 2002), updated in 2017 and remained in draft form until May of 2022. The finalised Guidelines contains clarify of language throughout and takes account of recent important judgements notably Fitzpatrick & Daly v An Bord Pleanála & Others  IESC 23 (Apple Data Centre Case) and Sweetman v An Bord Pleanála & Ors ( IEHC 390) (Derryadd Windfarm Case). Some of the key updates include the following:
- Assessment of waste management in ‘material assets’ chapter.
- Formal and informal screening and scoping consultation process with competent authorities.
- Inclusion of carbon accounting/carbon balance assessment in ‘climate’ chapter.
- Updates to level of detail required in project description section in line with Derryadd Windfarm case.
- Reference to ‘offsetting’ as a ‘compensation measure’ and not a ‘mitigation measure’.