TII has published the following guidance documents to provide a step by step approach to minimising impacts on badgers, bats, watercourse crossings and wetland archaeology prior to and during the construction phase of national road schemes.
Management of Waste
The revised document Guidelines for the Management of Waste from National Road Construction Projects takes account of the latest development in waste legislation and waste policy in relation to national road scheme developments. A key purpose of the document is to help all parties understand the complicated legal framework which governs the management of waste generated by national road projects. In addition to this, it sets out good practice guidelines to ensure that effective waste management remains a priority throughout the construction stage of these types of developments. The purpose here is to encourage the minimisation of the environmental impacts of roads-related construction waste, as well as the volume of the actual waste being generated and to facilitate compliance with the provisions of the Waste Management Acts (1996-2011). Finally, these guidelines also have the objective of providing information to facilitate an effective dialogue between road contractors, relevant statutory bodies and third parties on how waste should be properly handled in a road-building context.
Treatment of Otters
The guidance document Guidelines for the Treatment of Otters prior to the Construction of National Road Schemes sets out procedures for the protection of otters during the construction of national road schemes. It details procedures for the exclusion of otters from holts and it contains a new specification for mammal fencing.
Treatment of Badgers
The badger guidance document Guidelines for the Treatment of Badgers prior to the Construction of National Road Schemes addresses surveying techniques, badger exclusion methodologies and design specifications for badger resistant fencing and mammal underpasses. Please note the revised specification for badger resistant fencing in Figure 2.
Treatment of Bats
The document on bats Guidelines for the Treatment of Bats during the Construction of National Road Schemes describes surveying techniques prior to tree felling and hedgerow removal and building demolition as well as exclusion methodologies.
The watercourse crossing document Guidelines for the Crossing of Watercourses during the Construction of National Road Schemes outlines measures relating to the conservation of fish, riparian and aquatic habitats and includes general proposals to cater for the passage of mammals under bridges and culverts on roadways.
The guideline document on wetland archaeology Guidelines for the Testing and Mitigation of the Wetland Archaeological Heritage for National Road Schemes will assist all those involved in the archaeological testing, field survey, excavation and post-excavation phases of archaeological mitigation in wetlands on national road schemes. The Guidelines are intended to promote best practice working in wetland environments and when recording archaeological remains, in particular organic material, preserved in a variety of wetland contexts. For the purposes of these guidelines the definition of a wetland includes peatlands, rivers, lakes (current and former), estuaries, seasonally flooded areas (such as callows) and coastal areas. The document outlines a range of general recommendations that need to be considered in approaching archaeological work in wetland environments; practical approaches relevant to both assessment and excavation, and a select bibliography offering comparative methodologies to projects in wetland environments.
Trees, Hedgerows and Scrub
The document Guidelines for the Protection and Preservation of Trees, Hedgerows and Scrub Prior to, During and Post Construction of National Road Schemes outlines important relevant legislation as well as the biological requirements of trees. Approaches to pre construction work are addressed and it outlines detailed methods for the protection of trees during the construction phase.
Noxious Weeds and Non-Native Invasive Plant Species
The authority has revised its guidance document Guidelines on the Management of Noxious Weeds and Non-Native Invasive Plant Species on National Road Schemes (Revision 1, December 2010). The Authority recognises the importance of controlling the spread of noxious weeds and non-native invasive plant species and ensuring any activities associated with the planning, construction and operation of national road schemes comply with the requirements of the Noxious Weeds Act, 1936, and the Wildlife (Amendment) Act, 2000. This guidance document addresses the predominant noxious weed and non-native invasive species likely to be encountered during the planning, construction and maintenance of national road schemes.
Environmental Operating Plan Guidelines
The Authority has implemented a system of documenting compliance with environmental commitments and requirements during the construction of national road schemes. This system involves main contractors engaged in the construction of national road schemes producing, implementing and maintaining Environmental Operating Plans (EOPs). The key elements of such plans are the:
- Appointment of an Environmental Manager by the main contractor;
- Incorporation of environmental commitments and requirements;
- Outlining methods by which construction work will be managed to meet these environmental commitments and requirements;
- Identification of roles and responsibilities of the main contractor’s staff having regard to the main contractor’s organisational structure;
- Incorporation of procedures for communicating with the public and communicating within the main contractor’s organisation;
- Incorporation of procedures for environmental awareness training;
- Incorporation of monitoring procedures and responses to the results of monitoring, where contractually required; and
- Provision of a system of audit and review with regard to the effectiveness of the plan.
Main contractors are provided with guidance with regard to the production, implementation and maintenance of such plans in the Authority’s Guidelines for the Creation, Implementation and Maintenance of an Environmental Operating Plan (National Roads Authority, 2007).