In March 2011, Defra’s Chief Scientific Adviser commissioned an independent review of the process that Natural England and Defra had used to select marine areas for designation as Special Areas for Conservation (SACs) under the EU Habitats Directive.
As part of this review, the In House Policy Resource (IHPR) was asked to carry out a detailed examination of:
- the tendering process used by Natural England to select external contractors to carry out three distinct pieces of work leading to the identification of the candidate SACs; and
- the consultation process used by Natural England leading to final recommendations to Defra on candidate SACs.
This publication sets out the findings and recommendations on this part of the review.