Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a process designed to evaluate the potential environmental effects of development and identify ways in which they can be avoided, reduced or offset through the application of appropriate mitigation measures. EIA is only required for those development projects that have the potential to generate significant environmental effects by virtue of their size, nature or the sensitivity of the receiving environment.
The EIA process is enshrined in UK legislation in the form of the 2011 EIA Regulations with additional practice guidance provided by the National Planning Practice Guidance. It contains three key stages, as follows:
- Screening: to determine through a formal consultation process, whether EIA is required for a particular project;
- Scoping: to confirm through consultation with the local planning authority and key stakeholders the extent and scope of the assessment based on the potential significant effects. Projects can necessitate various component assessments such as ecology, archaeology, noise and air quality, the need for which is determined at this stage; and
- Assessment: the stage at which the development proposals are tested to determine the significance of potential environmental effects and mitigation measures are specified in order to address these effects.
The findings of the EIA are presented in an Environmental Statement (ES) that is submitted with a planning application to the local planning authority. The application and the ES are then consulted upon and the information presented will be a key influencing factor in whether a development is acceptable and is granted planning consent.
Our EIA specialist holds a Master’s Degree in EIA, is a Chartered Environmentalist, a Full Member of the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA) and an IEMA Registered EIA Practitioner with over a decade of EIA project management experience in the private sector.
Mainer Associates has been appointed to undertake a number of different planning strategies and statements to accompany outline or detailed submissions.
Energy Strategies and Statements are developed using our specialist team of energy specialists and Low Carbon Consultants. These documents can be developed with varying levels of detail, from high-level benchmarking calculations to full Dynamic Simulation Modelling (DSM). For housing developments we utilise the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) for detailed submissions or again benchmarking when high level calculations are more appropriate.
The use of DSM and SAP provides our clients with very detailed calculations that can then be taken forward into the later design and construction phases. Where we have been appointed to undertake detailed calculations at the pre-planning stages, we are able to provide design and construction models using the same basic model developed for planning.
At Mainer Associates we look to use the latest methods and technologies in order to ensure the most appropriate solutions are specified on all our projects. The use of Dynamic Simulation Modelling (DSM) has been a key tool for both new build and refurbishment projects.
As a level 5 accredited piece of software, TAS (DSM) allows us to dynamically model complex buildings where a simple SBEM would not suffice.
Typically we now use TAS even for simple buildings as it is more cost-effective for our clients given the flexibility of the software to generate a number of different outputs.
Outputs for new build developments:
- Level 5 EPCs
- Part L compliance documents
- Thermal Comfort Studies
- Renewable Technology Studies
- Daylighting calculations
- Various reports required for BREEAM
The TAS tool allows us to appraise a number of different solutions and quickly compare the benefits from both carbon reduction and economic perspectives for refurbishment projects. Using TAS we are able to model the current performance of our client’s buildings in order that we can recommend the most appropriate refurbishment or retrofit solutions to ensure the long-term sustainability of our clients’ stock.
Mainer Associates is able to provide services to help clients meet Part L of the Building Regulations and produce EPCs. Using DSM for non-domestic buildings and SAP for domestic buildings, we are able to bring our wealth of experience in this area to ensure our clients get the very best advice on how to meet the required standards.
It is important to note that the 2013 revision of Part L includes a requirement to undertake an Alternative Energy Study. This is also something we are able to offer as part of our service.
Our team have extensive experience in BREEAM and particularly in achieving the highest BREEAM ratings. We also have experience in large scale, mixed use developments most notably stadia and retails developments, both in the UK and in Europe. We equally possess the same experience in Code for Sustainable Homes completing a wide range of assessments from tower blocks in central London to single properties throughout the UK.
- Commercial (Retail, Offices, Industrial)
- Public (Healthcare, Education)
- Code for Sustainable Homes
- BREEAM for Domestic Refurbishment
See our GreenBookLive listing
Code for Sustainable Homes
Mainer Associates have extensive experience in achieving high Code ratings for a variety of different dwelling types. From residential and mixed use tower blocks in central London to individual properties elsewhere in the UK, Mainer Associates have successfully achieved the desired ratings for all assessments.
Mainer Associates now offers a number of funding options for renewable technology projects. Many of our clients view renewable energy solutions as aspirational but find the barrier of capital investment difficult to get around.
Mainer Associates works with a number of different partners to bring in third party funding for renewable technology installations where the capital investment is provided as part of the package delivered by Mainer Associates.
Mainer Associates can offer a whole building assessment to find the most appropriate solutions for our clients and then bring together a team consisting of Contractor, Funder and Supplier to deliver the project.
At present we can offer funding solutions for the following:
- Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) funded solutions
- Feed In Tariff (FiT) funded solutions
- LED lighting
Mainer Associates has a team of specialists in renewable energy solutions. Not only are we able to assist with developing business cases and project planning, we are also able to use our contacts in the renewable energy market place for the benefit of our clients.
In addition to using Dynamic Simulation Modelling to model the baseline and subsequent energy and carbon reduction improvements, for PV projects we utilise PV Sol Expert. This program enables us to model PV array in an incredible amount of detail. From modelling the effects of shading objects in 3D to selecting the most efficient panel and inverter manufacturers, we are able to provide a robust business case for our clients when selecting renewable technologies.
In addition to modelling payback periods on the basis of available funding streams such as Feed-in Tariffs and Renewable Heat Incentive, we are also able to offer third-party-funded installations. Our clients benefit from energy costs by entering into Power Purchase Agreements with a third party having benefitted from the installation of a particular technology free of charge. This option removes the barrier of capital investment while still providing the significant carbon and energy cost savings.
Mainer Associates now offer acoustics to compliment our other sustainability services. We specialise in environmental, architectural, industrial and building services noise/vibration along with planning and expert witness matters. We offer a personal and professional service to both private and public sector clients across the UK at competitive rates.
With over 13 years experience in acoustic consultancy our partner has extensive experience in all major building sectors including Residential, Commercial, Industrial, Leisure, Retail, Education and Healthcare. Qualifications include a BEng in Electroacoustics and member of the Institute of Acoustics (MIOA).
• We provide environmental noise surveys, operational noise surveys, demolition & construction noise monitoring;
• Noise mapping of existing/proposed transportation and industrial noise sources upon existing/proposed developments;
• Airborne sound insulation, impact sound insulation, external envelope, internal separation, acoustic privacy, reverberation time, ambient noise levels, absorptive treatment, floating floors, acoustic linings, mass barrier ceilings, secondary glazing, acoustic baffles, BREEAM Hea 05;
• Impact assessments for planning including noise impacts upon the proposed development and noise impacts on the surrounding environment due to the proposed development;· and
• Atmospheric noise emissions, indoor ambient noise levels, plantroom breakout, ductborne noise, crosstalk attenuators, generators, condenser units, dry air coolers, AHUs, extract fans, pumps, booster sets, fan coil units, silencers, acoustic louvres, acoustic screens, BREEAM Pol 05.