Future Operational Protocol to Assess the Impacts of Air Pollution on the Natural Environment - A Call for Evidence

Consultation opened on 21 July 2023. Closing date 27 October 2023.


The Department for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has published a Call for Evidence on its Future Operational Protocol to Assess the Impacts of Air Pollution on the Natural Environment.


Consultation description

Please note that a misprint on page 20 paragraph 3 was corrected on 26 July 2023.

The primary method for responses is online via Citizen Space. This Call for Evidence is open for a period of 16 weeks until 23:59, 27 October 2023. We encourage you to respond as early as possible. We welcome evidence from all sectors, age-groups, organisations, and individuals.

The current Operational Protocol used by DAERA was developed in 2012. Since 2012, the body of scientific evidence on the impacts of air pollution on designated sites and protected habitats has greatly increased. Recent case law also must be taken into consideration. These factors underpin the need for a new Operational Protocol.

DAERA, in its role as the appropriate nature conservation body in Northern Ireland as set out in The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017, Section 5 has a duty to provide advice to planning authorities and other competent authorities on the potential impacts of air pollution, including ammonia, from plans and projects on designated sites and protected habitats.

NIEA performs this function for terrestrial/freshwater environments, on behalf of DAERA. This advice is provided through the use of an Operational Protocol.

The aim of this Call for Evidence is to provide stakeholders with an opportunity to submit additional evidence that will contribute to the development and delivery of a scientifically robust, evidence-informed, Operational Protocol to protect our natural environment and ensure sustainable development, for the consideration of an incoming Minister and future Executive.


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