§ Lord Norrie
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What arrangements are proposed for applying the requirements for environmental assessment in Directive 85/337/EEC to private Bills as recommended by the Joint Select Committee on Private Bills Procedure.
§ Baroness Blatch
The Department of the Environment, the Welsh Office and the House authorities here and in another place have been co-operating in devising arrangements to implement the recommendation of the Joint Select Committee on Private Bill Procedure that evironmental assessment requirements should be applied to projects for which approval is sought in private Bills. We believe this will be a valuable aid to the committees which consider Bills for projects which may have significant environmental effects.
The Department of the Environment is today issuing a consultation paper setting out the proposed arrangements. It includes a draft amendment to standing orders which is expected to be tabled shortly, and invites comments on the administrative arrangements proposed for my Department to direct whether or not assessment is necessary in particular cases. I am placing a copy of the paper in the Library.