Tuesday, 14 December 2010
Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government
Special Areas of Conservation
The proposed works to which the Question refers are within a candidate Special Area of Conservation and are therefore subject to the requirements of the European Communities (Natural Habitats) Regulations 1997 to 2005. They involve the removal of trees that form part of a priority habitat type – alluvial woodland – for which the site is designated for protection. Any such works are required by EU and national transposing law to comply with Article 6 of the Habitats Directive, which includes a detailed examination of the potential impacts of such proposed works. My Department is in discussion with the Office of Public Works in relation to the steps to be taken in this regard, and is seeking to have the issue brought to a conclusion as soon as possible.