The Access to Information on the Environment (AIE) Regulations give individuals the right to access Environmental Information held by, or for, Public Authorities. Under these regulations, information relating to the environment held by, or for, a public authority must be made available on request, subject to certain exceptions.
The AIE Regulations provide a definition of environmental information; outlines the manner in which requests for information may be submitted to public authorities; and the manner in which public authorities are required to deal with requests.
Definition of Environmental Information
Environmental Information can be held in any material form (including written, visual, aural or electronic) and is defined as follows:
- The state of the elements of the environment, such as air and atmosphere, water, soil, land, landscape and natural sites including wetlands, coastal and marine areas, biological diversity and its components, including genetically modified organisms and the interaction among these elements;
- Factors, such as substances, energy, noise, radiation or waste, including radioactive waste, emissions, discharges and other releases into the environment, affecting or likely to affect the elements of the environment;
- Measures (including administrative measures), such as policies, legislation, plans, programmes, environmental agreements, and activities affecting or likely to affect the elements and factors referred to in paragraphs (a) and (b) as well as measures or activities designed to protect those elements;
- Reports on the implementation of environmental legislation;
- Cost-benefit and other economic analyses and assumptions used within the framework of the measures and activities referred to in paragraph (c), and;
- The state of human health and safety, including the contamination of the food chain, where relevant, conditions of human life, cultural sites and built structures inasmuch as they are, or may be, affected by the state of the elements of the environment referred to in paragraph (a) or, through those elements, by any of the matters referred to in paragraphs (b) and (c).
How to make an AIE Request:
You may also submit a request via email to email@example.com or via post to:
The Approved Housing Bodies Regulatory Authority,
4th Floor Grattan House,
67-72 Mount Street Lower
When making your request, you should:
- State that your request is being made under the AIE Regulations.
- Provide your name, address and any other relevant contact details to allow us to contact you and comply with your request.
- State, in terms that are as specific as possible, the environmental information you request, and;
- Specify the format you prefer to receive the information.
How is an AIE request processed by the AHBRA?
On receipt of an AIE request, we will issue an acknowledgement letter outlining the date the request was received and the latest date by which a decision will be issued.
A decision regarding your request will normally be issued as soon as possible, but at the latest must be made within one month from the date of receipt of the request. In some cases, an extension of time may be necessary to complete the decision. If this occurs, we will write to the applicant within the month, indicating when a response will issue. This date should not be more than two months from the receipt of the original request.
If you consider that your AIE request was refused, wholly or partially, or was otherwise not properly dealt with in accordance with the provisions of the AIE Regulations, you may seek an internal review of the decision not later than one month following the receipt of the decision. If following this, you remain unsatisfied you can appeal this decision to the Commissioner for Environmental Information.
For further information on FOI, please find some useful links below:
- European Communities (Access to Information on the Environment) Regulations 2007 to 2011 (S.I No. 133 of 2007, S.I. No. 662 of 2011 & S.I. No. 615 of 2014): AIE Regulations
- Commissioner for Environmental Information: ocei.ie