- 11 Aug 2020
Date received: 24 Jun 2020
Date responded: 21 Jul 2020
Details regarding 'Environmental Impact Assessment projects.
1. Please can you tell me the number of times Scottish Forestry asked applicants to apply for consent for forestry projects in areas that were below the thresholds it publishes in the years 2020; 2019 and 2018?
2. Please can you tell me how many individual projects of any size or scope applied for consent in the years 2020; 2019 and 2018 and of these how many were granted consent?
3. Please can you tell me how many Enforcement Notices were issued for any reason in the years 2020; 2019 and 2018 and how many of these resulted in a conviction?
Forestry and Land Scotland's Knapdale land Management Plan (LMP) includes felling operations within SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) areas. Your published thresholds for applying for consent include SSSI's.
4. Please can you tell me if Forestry and Land Scotland has applied for consent for felling operations within SSSI areas under the Knapdale LMP and if that consent application included an Environmental Impact Assessment?
5. If an Environmental Impact Assessment was produced for the presumed application above, please can I be sent a copy of it or, if this is not possible, where can I see a copy of it?
Forestry and Land Scotland's Knapdale Land Management Plan includes felling operations over many years.
6. Please can you tell me how much income is expected to be derived solely from timber harvesting and associated sales from the Knapdale LMP in the years 2020 to 2025 and what proportion of this income will be derived solely from SSSI areas in the years 2020 to 2025?
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.
I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested related to your questions where it is available in Annex B.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide all of the information you have requested regarding question 6. Therefore we are refusing your request under the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs. The reasons why that exception applies are explained in Annex A to this letter.
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.
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House