Environmental Information Regulations 2004—what is environmental information?
Produced in partnership with Patrick Senior of Stephenson Harwood
Environmental Information Regulations 2004—what is environmental information?

The following Environment guidance note Produced in partnership with Patrick Senior of Stephenson Harwood provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Environmental Information Regulations 2004—what is environmental information?
  • Brexit impact
  • Regulatory definition of environmental information
  • What is meant by 'environment'?
  • Measures and activities—regulation 2(1)(c)
  • Reports on environmental legislation—regulation 2(1)(d)
  • Cost-benefit and economic analyses—regulation 2(1)(e)
  • Human, health and safety, conditions of human life, cultural sites and built structure—regulation 2(1)(f)
  • Information
  • Practical examples of environmental information

Understanding what environmental information includes is fundamental to environmental regulation because it will determine whether a request for information will be considered under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOI 2000) or the Environmental Information Regulations 2004, SI 2004/3391 (EIR 2004). If information requested falls within the definition of environmental information, then that request must be considered under the EIR 2004.

This Practice Note examines the statutory definition of environmental information, and provides examples from published guidance and case law of when information has been held to be environmental information—covering such contentious areas as:

  1. financial viability assessments

  2. road tolling information, and

  3. information regarding a public authority's decision to dispose of land

Brexit impact

This content is likely to be impacted by the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. For information on how leaving the EU will affect environmental law, see Practice Note: Brexit—environmental law implications, which details the relevant aspects of the withdrawal process, as well as providing insights into developments affecting environmental protection, such as the draft Environmental Principles and Governance Bill.

The date and time of withdrawal of the EU (exit day) is specified in UK law (under section 20 of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018), but until the legal terms of the withdrawal negotiated with the EU are finalised, there remains a possibility that the UK’s membership