Under European law, you have legal rights to legal rights to seek access to information on the environment from public authorities. These rights are known as the Access to Information on the Environment (AIE) regulations.
The bodies which you can request information from include:
When making a request for information under the Access to Information on the Environment Regulations you must:
specify the form and manner of access desired
Normally you will be notified of the decision on your request within 1 month of its receipt.
Applications can be sent by post or email to the addresses below.
There is no initial fee required when lodging a request for information under AIE.
However, a Public authority may charge a reasonable fee for supplying environmental information depending on the volume of work involved in compiling information where it has not been previously available in an accessible format. This fee has been set as €20.95 per hour.
If requesters require hard copies there may be a fee of 4c per sheet depending on the volume of information contained in the request and this will be advised in the final decision letter.
Where the estimated cost of supplying information on the environment is likely to exceed €100, a deposit of at least 20% of the total amount will be required. In such cases, the requester will be advised in writing of the position and will be provided with an opportunity to review or amend the request.
Fees in respect of supplying information may be waived where the cost is estimated at less than €10.00.
If you are unhappy with the decision on your request, or feel your request was otherwise not properly dealt with in accordance with the provisions of the Access to Information on the Environment Regulations, you may request an internal review. You must request this within one month of receipt of the decision. You can send your application for appeal to the same place you sent your original request.
No fee will be charged for the internal review process.
You will receive a written outcome of the review informing you of the decision, the reason for the decision and advising you of your right of appeal to the Commissioner for Environmental Information. The time limits and fees associated with such an appeal will also be outlined. The outcome of the review will be issued to you within one month of the date of receipt of the request.
A written appeal can be submitted to the Commissioner for Environmental Information.
The AIE Regulations provide that a fee of 150 euro will be charged for an appeal to the Commissioner for Environmental Information.
However, provision is also made for a reduced appeal fee of 50 euro for medical card holders and their dependents.
A reduced appeal fee will also apply for people, not party to the original request for access to information, to appeal a decision to release information which they believe will affect them.