Publication - FOI/EIR Release

Information regarding Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm project: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Published:
22 Feb 2019
Information regarding Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm project: EIR release
FOI reference: FOI/18/03786
Date received: 21 Dec 2018
Date responded: 21 Feb 2019
Information requested

 

You requested:
“…all associated information regarding the AOWFL project, from 29th May 2018 to the 22nd December 2018.”

Response

 

As the information you have requested is ‘environmental information’ for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA. 

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.  We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

 

Copyright warning

The information supplied to you continues to be protected by the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.  You are free to use it for your own purposes, including any non-commercial research you are doing and for the purposes of news reporting.  Any other re-use, for example commercial publication, would require the permission of the copyright holder.  Most documents supplied by the Scottish Government will have been produced by government officials and will be Crown Copyright.  You can find details on the arrangements for re-using Crown Copyright material on the OPSI website at:

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/.

Information you receive which is not subject to Crown Copyright continues to be protected by the copyright of the person, or organisation, from which the information originated.  You must ensure that you gain their permission before reproducing any third party (non-Crown Copyright) information.

Response to your request

We enclose a copy of most of the information you requested.

Information from the period 29 May 2018 to 22 December 2018 in relation to the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre in Aberdeen Bay.

Due to the size of the files we are unable to upload the documents referred to above.
If you wish to consider, please contact us at the address below and we will be happy to provide.

 

Some of the information you have requested is available from the Marine Scotland Information online site at: http://marine.gov.scot/ml/european-offshore-wind-deployment-centre. Under regulation 6(1)(b) of the EIRs, we do not have to give you information which is already publicly available and easily accessible to you in another form or format. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and we will send you a paper copy.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because exceptions under regulations 10(4)(d) (unfinished or incomplete information), 10(4)(e) (internal communications), 11(1) (personal information) and 11(2) (personal information of a third party) of the EIRs apply to that information. The reasons why these exceptions apply are explained in the Annex to this letter.

 

ANNEX

REASONS FOR NOT PROVIDING INFORMATION

Exceptions that apply

Exceptions under regulations 10(4)(d) (unfinished or incomplete information), 10(4)(e) (internal communications), 11(1) (personal information) and 11(2) (personal information of a third party) of the EIRs apply to some of the information you have requested.

 

Regulation 10(4)(d) – unfinished or incomplete information

An exception under regulation 10(4)(d) of the EIRs (unfinished or incomplete information) applies to some of the information you have requested because it is unfinished draft documents.

This exception is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception.  We recognise that there is some public interest in release as part of open, transparent and accountable government. However, this is outweighed by the public interest in ensuring that unfinished or incomplete information which is still in being worked on or is under active consideration is not disclosed when it might misinform the public or give a misleading impression of the Government’s view or position on the matter to which the information relates. 

 

Regulation 10 (4)(e) - internal communications

An exception under regulation 10(4)(e) of the EIRs (internal communications) applies to some of the information you have requested because it is internal communication between Scottish Government Ministers and/or officials.

This exception is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. We recognise that there is some public interest in release as part of open, transparent and accountable government, and to inform public debate. However, there is a greater public interest in properly considered implementation and development of policies and decisions.

 

Regulation 11(1) – personal information

An exception under regulation 11(1) of the EIRs (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal information of which you are the data subject, and so it is subject to the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA).  This exception is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.

 

Regulation 11(2) – personal information of a third party

An exception under regulation 11(2) of the EIRs (personal information of a third party) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998.  This exception is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.

 

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG