Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Seventeenth Report


Memorandum from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs


1. The Committee has requested the Department to submit a memorandum on the following point:

Regulation 10(1) refers to the case where the Secretary of State reaches the opinion that "the environmental statement should contain additional information in order to be an environmental statement". As an environmental statement is a statement which has the characteristics set out in the definition of that expression in regulation 2(1), this proposition appears to be logically impossible. Explain the intended meaning and effect of the words cited.

2. The intention of regulation 10(1) is to give the Secretary of State an opportunity to require the provision of further information in cases where a statement which purports to be an environmental statement (as defined in regulation 2(1)) has been submitted with an application for consent, has appeared, on initial inspection, to meet the requirements of an environmental statement so as to allow the application to be accepted as valid by the Secretary of State, but which, on closer scrutiny, has been found to be defective in that it does not in fact contain all of the information necessary for it to be an environmental statement.

3. It is accepted that the drafting of regulation 10(1) is defective for the reasons identified by the Committee and it is therefore proposed to take the opportunity to remedy this defect when the Regulations are next amended. However, it is felt that the intention of regulation 10(1) is clear in the context in which it applies and that there is therefore no risk of the drafting defect giving rise to confusion before it can be corrected.

18 January 2002

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