Habitats Regulations Assessment

Under the UK Habitats Regulations, where there is potential for development to impact on a Natura 2000 site (Special Area of Conservation (SAC), Special Protection Area (SPA), or Ramsar site) a Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA) may be required.

The HRA process comprises a screening stage, consideration of potential significant impacts (both direct and indirect) on the integrity of Natura 2000 sites (Appropriate Assessment), examination of mitigation options, and assessment of alternative solutions where applicable.

Natura 2000 sites often have multiple designations for a range of protected species and habitats.  FPCR has the range and depth of expertise necessary to undertake this type of work, which includes large and complex schemes including residential development, major infrastructure, mineral/quarry sites, and renewable energy schemes.

Our services include:

  • Screening to identify likely impacts of a scheme on a Natura 2000 site and to identify any impacts likely to be significant
  • Appropriate Assessment of potential impacts identified during screening on the integrity of the Natura Site, with regard to its structure, function and conservation objectives. Includes assessment of mitigation options.
  • Assessment of alternative solutions
  • Where there are imperative reasons of overriding public interest, assessment of appropriate compensation measures.