The Environmental Information Regulations (EIR) give members of the public the right to access environmental information held by public authorities.
What is Environmental Information?
The regulations have broadened the definition of environmental information. Environmental information covers information on the state of the environment, such as:
- Air, water, soil, land, flora and fauna (including human beings),diversity, genetically modified organisms
- Information on emissions and discharges, noise, energy, radiation, waste and other such substances
- Measures and activities such as policies, plans and agreements
- Reports, cost benefit and economic analyses
- The state of human health and safety, contamination of the food chain
- Cultural sites and built structures (as they may be affected by environmental factors)
Charging for access to information
Under EIR, a public authority cannot make a charge for allowing you:
- Access to any public register or lists of environmental information or
- To examine the information (at a place chosen by the public authority)
However, charging for the provision of the information is at our discretion and the scale of charges is determined annually. Currently, for provision of information involving a search of records including statutory public records the charge (inclusive of VAT) is £45.00 per hour with a minimum of £90.00 per search.
Additional guidance on the Freedom of Information Act and the Environmental Information Regulations are available on the Information Commissioner's Office website
Environmental services FOI Co-ordinator