Guidance

Mandatory pre-application process (for works Orders only)

These steps must be carried out before you submit your formal application. Your application must be accompanied by the appropriate fee.

Mandatory pre-application process (for works Orders only)

These steps must be carried out before you submit your formal application. Your application must be accompanied by the appropriate fee.

If you are applying for a works Order (you are authorising a project), there is a statutory pre-application stage that must be carried out before the MMO can process the Harbour Order application. They are outlined in the table below and are presented in chronological order.

Step Description
Notice of intention You must notify the MMO in writing that you intend to apply for a Harbour Order which authorises a project. As part of the notice of intention, within the same letter, you must also request an EIA (Environmental Impact Assessment) screening opinion (see below).
Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) screening We will determine whether we believe your project, based on its size, nature and location will require an EIA. Screening is a mandatory stage of the process. The 1964 Act does not allow for ‘screening by agreement’ unlike some other regulations.

You must provide the MMO with enough information about your project to make this determination. This includes construction methodology, proposed timings for the work, any predicted environmental impacts and any measures intended to reduce or avoid these impacts.

If insufficient information is provided, we will write back to you and request further details. You will receive a letter from the MMO detailing the outcome of this EIA screening opinion. The screening opinion will be issued to you within 90 days of receiving the sufficient information described above.
EIA Scoping If your project is determined to require an EIA, MMO must also provide a scoping opinion. You will need to submit a document outlining the topics that you believe should be included in the EIA. MMO will review the document and consult with our advisors listed below.

We will provide an opinion confirming whether we agree with the areas proposed and if there are any further topics which must also be assessed.

Consultees:
- Local MMO coastal office
- Cefas (Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science)
- Natural England
- Environment Agency
- Historic England
- Maritime and Coastguard Agency
- Trinity House
- Department for Transport
- Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority
- Royal Yachting Association
- Local Planning Authority
- Highways England
- Network Rail
- Ministry of Defence

The topics that we identify in this scoping opinion must be included in your Environmental Statement which will form part of your application.

MMO will aim to provide the scoping opinion to you within three months of receipt of your scoping document. Your scoping document must be sent to us after we have issued your screening opinion
Environmental Statement (ES) preparation An Environmental statement is your assessment of the likely environmental effects of your project. It will be submitted alongside your formal application. It must be prepared by competent experts.

An ES must include: a description of the project, the site, the main effects it is likely to have on the environment, a description of the main alternatives to the proposal and a description of the measures intended to avoid or reduce significant adverse environmental effects. It must also include a non-technical summary of the document.

Topics outlined in the scoping opinion must be included in your ES.

Published 21 February 2020