Although applications for energy generation projects on sites of more than 0.5ha may need to be supported by an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report, not all of those will necessarily have likely impacts that would warrant a full EIA report. So, to expedite the planning application process, and to determine the time and resources that our client would require to commit to environmental assessments in support of an application for a battery energy storage facility (BESS) in Govan, we prepared and submitted an EIA screening request to Glasgow City Council. In doing that, we looked at the characteristics of the proposed development, its location, and any potential impacts that it might have, noting, for example, the industrial context of the site and its previous use as a storage facility, the limited vehicle movements associated with the proposed BESS, the safety measures to be incorporated into that, and the distance between this and the nearest residential properties.
Our EIA screening request made a strong case for concluding that an EIA report should not be required, although the application should be supported by a noise impact assessment and a flood risk assessment to confirm that those potential environmental impacts would not be significant. The Council agreed with that conclusion, giving our client certainty about the documentation to be submitted with the application, and saving them time and resources by ensuring that the documents submitted addressed the issues pertinent to that particular application, to the satisfaction of the Council.