European Protected Species Mitigation (EPSM) licences are required from the Regulatory Authority (Natural England) if an activity is reasonably likely to affect an European Protected Species (EPS) in a manner that will result in an offence under the Conservation of Species and Habitats Regulations 2010 (as amended). This is usually determined by the ecological consultant following surveys that have an identified a EPS to be present on the site.
The EPSM licence makes what would otherwise be an illegal activity, legal, but in order for the Regulatory Authority to issue a licence, an application must be submitted that demonstrates how the three derogation tests are met. This application typically consists of a Method Statement and Application Form with supporting figures and plans. For some projects, a Reasoned Statement is also required.
Charging for these licences will start in April 2019. All licence applications submitted on that date or later will be subject to charges on issue of the licence, unless they meet one of the charge exemption criteria. For a ‘Full’ bat EPS mitigation licence, Natural England will charge the applicant from £500. For a bat mitigation ‘Low impact’ class licence registration, Natural England will generally charge the applicant a fixed price of £130. NOTE that the final costs is given by NE when the paperwork is submitted.