Required for most planning applications that involve developing land, a Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (Phase 1 Habitat Survey) seeks to determine the ecological value of a site.
A Preliminary Ecological Appraisal (PEA) normally consists of a desk-top study, provided by the local Environmental Records Centre, and a Phase 1 Habitat Survey. The Phase 1 Habitat Survey will identify habitats present, potential for protected species and invasive species on site.
Our ecologists will update you when the survey has been undertaken – flagging up any issues that may have an impact on the development – and will prepare a report to include an executive summary, methodology, desk study and survey results. We will also provide any recommendations for further surveys required and/or mitigation that might be needed during and after development works.
Clear digital maps produced by our GIS technicians can also be included to illustrate ecological features on site and recommendations on how to protect/enhance them as required by policy and legislation.
All reports are produced according to the latest best practice guidance, including BS42020:2013 (required for ecological reports accompanying planning applications), and all relevant CIEEM guidance, ensuring all constraints and opportunities are identified at the earliest stage and any risks to the project reduced.
The three main relevant pieces of legislation are the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 and the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006. The main source of national planning policy relating to ecology is the National Planning Policy Framework (2012).
The aim of a PEA is to identify the key ecological constraints and opportunities on a site. If no further surveys are needed, this report can quickly and easily be upgraded to an Ecological Impact Assessment. However, if further work is required this is carried out before the planning application is determined. CEC’s experienced and licensed ecologists can undertake these for you – common surveys include bat, badger, dormouse, reptile and birds.