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duichesheoigheach Aug 24, 2019 01:58 AM
I have been researching Special Areas of Conservation and Special Protection Areas in Ireland under the Natura 2000 guidelines, namely the Maumturk Mountains SAC, Lough Corrib SAC, Lough Corrib SPA, Lough Mask SPA and Lough Carra/Mask Complex SAC.
I have been reading through the Natura 2000 Standard Data Forms for each area, that are available to the public through our National Parks and Wildlife Service.
In these forms I have noticed that under the section titled "Threats, Pressures and activities with impacts on the site" there are a number of activities listed by their code , their respective rank of threat (L/M/H) and where that activity takes place in relation to the areas (inside/out/both).
I have noticed that in each of these SACs/SPAs there is no noting for the threat posed by Ref: C- Mining, extraction of materials and energy production.
There is no listing of any threat posed by the following subsections of this specific section:
C01.04.01 Open cast mining
C01.04.02 Underground mining
C01.06 Geotechnical Survey
C01.07 Mining and Extraction activities not referred to above.

My questions would be whether the European Environment Agency or the Irish government create these lists of threats to the sites? and if the European Environmental Agency would class exploration works involved with mining (prospecting, geochemical surveys, drilling and trenching) to be of a threat to these SACs/SPAs. And if they might be omitted from the Threats, Pressures and activities section of the Natura 2000 Standard Data Forms because exploration works would not have been considered viable in such areas?
Replies (1)
EEA Sep 02, 2019 01:15 PM
Dear 'Duichesheoignheach',

Thank you for contacting the European Environment Agency (EEA).

The Natura 2000 Standard Data Forms are filled and sent to the European Commission by the Irish authorities. The European Environment Agency supports the European Commission with an IT infrastructure for the reporting, the processing and quality check of the member state reports to the European dataset and the evaluation of representation and level of protection as part of the sufficiency process. For more information, see[…]/building-the-natura-2000-network. The Natura 2000 reference portal, including item 12) Threats, Pressures, Activities (SDF field: 4.3), is available at

We would suggest to direct your questions regarding the application of Threats, pressures and activities fields in the Standard Data Form, to the European Commission - DG ENV Nature Unit at

With kind regards,
EEA Enquiry Service