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Planning and Environmental Law

Accurate and timely planning and environmental law advice can be instrumental in the success of any property development. 

Whether in relation to a commercial or residential development, our team of property law solicitors will work to understand your requirements and provide the input you need to make your project a resounding success.

Planning legislation in Ireland

The Planning and Development Act 2000 (as amended) (the Act) underpins planning law in Ireland, covering all planning-related matters including regional planning guidelines, development plans, local areas plans, the process of applying for planning permission, Strategic Development Zones, social housing, appeals and enforcement, State development, and Ministerial Guidelines.  Due to the depth and complexity of this Act, it is imperative to engage planning and legal expertise with a robust understanding of its practical and real-world implications. 

Environmental legislation in Ireland

Environmental law is a complex area within Ireland and the EU.  There are five principal regulating authorities charged with environmental oversight, including:

  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
  • Local authorities.
  • Health and Safety Authority.
  • Inland Fisheries Ireland.
  • Department of Environment, Community and Local Government.

In addition, there are several pieces of Irish legislation which must be understood and conformed to, many of which are influenced by EU law, including:

  • Air Pollution Acts 1987 and 2011 (Air Pollution Acts).
  • Environmental Protection Acts 1992 to 2013 (EPA Acts).
  • EU (Environmental Liability) Regulations 2008 and 2011.
  • Environmental (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2011.
  • Fisheries Consolidation Act 1959 and Inland Fisheries Act 2010.
  • Local Government (Water Pollution) Act 1977 to 2007.
  • Protection of the Environment Act 2003.
  • Waste Water Discharge (Authorisation) Regulations 2007 as amended.
  • Waste Management Act 1996 to 2011.
  • Water Services Act 2007 to 2012.

How strictly are environmental laws enforced in Ireland?

The regulating authorities listed above enforce breaches of environmental law on a risk basis.  Larger breaches will typically lead to greater levels of enforcement action.  Measures may include sending warning letters, statutory notices requiring action to be taken, threats to prosecute, and in cases of persistent or large breaches, Court prosecution and Court orders may be sought.

Why choose Lavelle Partners?

  • Our commercial property team, led by our Head of Property, Nicola Walsh, has a wealth of practical knowledge and experience in relation to environmental and planning laws in Ireland.
  • Our team has over 30 years of experience in providing planning and environment law legal guidance for some of Ireland’s largest construction firms and developers.
  • We are personally invested in our clients’ success.  As such, we help you tackle problems and capitalise on opportunities swiftly.  If a conventional solution does not achieve your objectives, we will challenge it, disrupting conventional ways of thinking to create a result that works for you.
  • When it comes to making decisions, our experience and knowledge give us the confidence to make decisions quickly, a crucial factor in construction and development projects.

For further information on how we can help you with environmental and planning law in Ireland, please contact Lavelle Partners in confidence on (01) 644 5800.

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