Application by Europa Oil & Gas Ltd (Inishkea)

Application for consent to conduct a geophysical and environmental baseline site survey proposed by Europa Oil & Gas (Inishkea) Limited who currently hold Licensing Option LO 16/20.

An application for consent for a geophysical and environmental baseline site survey was received by the Petroleum Affairs Division of the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment on 15 May 2019. The survey application was received from Europa Oil & Gas (Inishkea) Limited within licensing option LO 16/20, granted by the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment pursuant to Section 8 of the Petroleum Act 1960. 

This application was posted on the Department's website on 15 May 2019 and the public were invited to make submissions in relation to this application up to the close of business on 14 June 2019.

Submissions can be sent to PADadmin@dccae.gov.ie.

The following documents were received:

 

Update  24 July, 2019

EIA Screening Assessment: Further Information Requested from Applicant

Having regard to, inter alia, the requirements of the EIA Directive (Directive 2011/92/EU, as amended), in particular Article 4 thereof, and the observations received further to public consultation on the application submitted by Europa Oil & Gas (Holdings) PLC (Europa), it is considered that further information is required from the applicant to enable an EIA screening assessment be carried out on the Europa ( Inniskea)  application.

On  24 July,  the further information considered necessary to enable an EIA screening assessment and determination be made in respect of the Europa application was sought from the applicant.

When received, the additional information will be published on the Department website and further submissions invited to be made on the additional materialduring a supplemental consultation period of 14 days.  Any submissions received will be taken into account in carrying out an EIA Screening Assessment in respect of this application.

 

Update 30 August, 2019

EIA Screening: Additional Information Received

Further to the Department request, the Applicant has provided additional information so that an EIA Screening Assessment can be carried out. This additional information has been published on the Department's website on 30 August, 2019. 

An additional 14 days consultation period will be provided until the 13 September 2019. The public are invited to make submissions in relation to the additional information, to EAU@dccae.gov.ie.

 

Update 7 November, 2019

EIA Screening Determination

On 6 November, 2019 an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Screening determination was made in accordance with Directive 2011/92/EU, as amended by Directive 2014/52/EU and the European Union (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Petroleum Exploration) Regulations 2013 (S.I. 134 of 2013, as amended) that the Europa Inishkea Survey is not likely to have significant effects on the environment and, consequently, an Environmental Impact Assessment is not required, subject to the implementation of the mitigation measures included in the EIA Screening Determination, which must be included in any consent granted in respect of the application.  

Further, that any consent granted in respect of this application must require that Europa obtain prior approval from DCCAE should an alternative survey vessel be proposed, in which case confirmation will be required that the survey equipment and methodology on any replacement vessel are equivalent to that described in the EIA Screening Reports submitted by Europa and that the nature and extent of the proposed activities described in these Reports has not materially changed.

AA Screening Determination and Further Information Request for Stage 2 Appropriate Assessment

On 6 November, a determination was made, following screening under Regulation 42 of the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (S.I. 477 of 2011), as amended, that a Stage 2 Appropriate Assessment is required in respect of the Europa Inishkea Survey application, as it cannot be excluded on the basis of objective scientific information that the proposed site survey, individually or in combination with other plans or projects, will have a significant effect on a European Site.

By further Notice dated 6 November, Europa has been directed to provide additional information considered necessary for the purposes of carrying out the Stage 2 Appropriate Assessment of the Europa Inishkea Survey application.  When received, the additional material will be published on the website of the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment (www.dccae.gov.ie) and submissions invited thereon for a period of 21 days.

 

Update 23 January, 2020

AA Determination: Additional Information Received

Further to the Department request, the Applicant has provided additional information so that an Appropriate Assessment Determination can be carried out. This additional information has been published on the Department's website on 23 January, 2020. 

An additional 21 days consultation period will be provided until 13 February 2020. The public are invited to make submissions in relation to the additional information, to EAU@dccae.gov.ie.


Judicial Review

The validity of the AA Screening Determination may be questioned by Judicial Review under Order 84 of the Rules of the Superior Courts (S.I. No.15 of 1986), as amended.  Any application for leave to apply for judicial review must be made promptly and in any event within three months from the date of the Determination. Practical information on Judicial Review can be obtained from the Citizens Information Board, Ground Floor, George's Quay House, 43 Townsend Street, Dublin 2 (www.citizensinformation.ie) or from the Courts Website (www.courts.ie).


Update 1 April, 2020  - Publication of Appropriate Assessment (AA) Determination

Appropriate Assessment Determination and Annex IV Species Assessment

On 30 March, an Appropriate Assessment determination was made, under the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (S.I. 477 of 2011), as amended, that the proposed geophysical and environmental baseline site survey over Licensing Blocks 18/19 and 18/20 (Europa Inishkea Survey), will not adversely affect the integrity of the relevant European sites identified (whether individually or in combination with other plans or projects), in view of the sites' conservation objectives, subject to the implementation of the mitigation measures adopted and outlined in the Determination and the mitigation measures already adopted in the EIA Screening Determination made in respect of the Europa 'Inishkea survey' application, which must be included in any consent that may be granted in respect of this application.

It was further concluded that there would be no significant adverse effects on Annex IV species that may be present in the area, should approval be granted in respect of the application, subject to the to the implementation of all the mitigation measures adopted, which must be included in any consent that may be granted in respect of this application.

The AA Determination and the relevant documents are attached.

Judicial Review

Please note that the validity of this Determination may be questioned by judicial review under Order 84 of the Rules of the Superior Courts (S.I. No.15 of 1986), as amended. Any application for leave to apply for judicial review must be made promptly and in any event within three months from the date of this decision. Practical information on Judicial Review can be obtained from the Citizens Information Board, Ground Floor, George's Quay House, 43 Townsend Street, Dublin 2 (www.citizensinformation.ie) or from the Courts Website (www.courts.ie).

Disclaimer: The above is intended for information purposes. It does not purport to be a legally binding interpretation of the relevant provisions on judicial review and it would be advisable for persons contemplating legal action to seek legal advice.

Update - 30 August, 2019

EIA Screening - Additional Information Received

Further to the Department request, the Applicant has provided additional information so that an EIA Screening Assessment can be carried out. This additional information has been published on the Department's website on 30 August, 2019. 

 

EUROPA INISHKEA RESPONSE TO REQUESTS FOR FURTHER INFORMATION AND CLARIFICATIONS TO INFORM ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT ASSESSMENT SCREENING – 29/8/2019

 

An additional 14 days consultation period will be provided until the 13 September, 2019. The public are invited to make submissions in relation to the additional information, to EAU@dccae.gov.ie