EcIA Accreditation Scheme

Pilot Accreditation Scheme – UPDATE

We are looking for volunteers to pilot our new EcIA accreditation process. We wish to recruit 30-35 candidates to undertake assessment, gain accreditation, and provide feedback to help shape future development of the scheme.

Participants will be required to:

  • Complete multiple choice questions
  • Answer open-ended questions
  • Upload a portfolio of evidence for assessors to review
  • Participate in an interview with an assessor

The accreditation assessment process is based on the approach to EcIA set out in CIEEM’s current EcIA Guidelines so please make sure that you are familiar with these before volunteering. Participants for this first cohort will be selected based on their geographical location, size of company they work for, experience of undertaking EcIA and size/type of projects worked on.

If you would like to volunteer to undertake EcIA accreditation then please provide us with some information using the form below.

Accredited EcIA – Expression of Interest

Please complete this form by Friday 18th March

We are currently developing a new accreditation scheme for lead authors and lead reviewers of ecological impact assessments (EcIA) and ecological chapters of environmental impact assessments (EIA).

For those working in planning–related roles or undertaking planning-related ecological survey and assessment, the EcIA process is fundamental to minimizing adverse impacts on biodiversity and, where possible, designing in enhancements. CIEEM publishes the accepted industry guidance on the EcIA process and provides high quality training for both members and non-members. Despite this the standard of EcIA work, on which so much depends, can be vatable. The Professional Standards Committee has commissioned the development of a potential accreditation scheme to address this issue.

The Proposed Accreditation Scheme

The purpose of the proposed accreditation scheme, which would only be open to CIEEM members, is to:

  • Promote a high standard of EcIA work by, where necessary, encouraging ecological and environmental management consultants to develop their practice to meet the standard.
  • Provide evidence of competence for those undertaking EcIA.
  • Recognise and reward those individuals who have demonstrated that they consistently meet the standard of EcIA set out in the CIEEM guidelines.
  • Give confidence to clients and other stakeholders that an EcIA has been done to the standard required, thereby reducing delays and challenges to planning and other decision-making processes.
  • Give confidence to key stakeholders, including the public, regarding the work of the ecological profession.
  • Reduce the number of EcIA-related complaints regarding members received by CIEEM.

The Criteria for Accreditation

The proposed criteria that form the basis of accreditation cover the knowledge, understanding and skills of a competent practitioner.  The criteria are:

  • An understanding of EcIA process and its application to a range of scenarios.
  • Evidence of a sufficiently detailed understanding of a broad range of ecological features, including knowledge of key characteristics (for habitats), habitat associations and preferences (for species or assemblages), conservation status and distribution, legal protection (where relevant), appropriate survey techniques, vulnerability/sensitivity to impacts and appropriate avoidance, mitigation, compensation and enhancement measures.
  • Ability to recognize personal limitations in respect of having sufficient detailed knowledge of a given ecological feature, and knowledge of appropriate sources of support and information.
  • Ability to produce clear, robust, justified and unbiased EcIA Reports.
  • Consistent adherence to relevant guidance.