Written Answers. - Roads Projects.

Ceist:

233 Mr. Hayes asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government if, in accordance with section 77 of the Roads Act, 1993, provisions are put in place by the National Roads Authority to compensate private residents where a major road development takes place; if such compensation is directly channelled to residents to alleviate increasing noise pollution as a result of such a development; the number of cases where the National Roads Authority has responded to such a provision; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8921/01]

While section 77 of the Roads Act, 1993, provides power to make regulations, in consultation with the Environmental Protection Agency, requiring works to be carried out on newly constructed or improved roads to mitigate the effects of road traffic noise, this issue is dealt with on a case by case basis through environmental impact assessment.

Forecasts of road noise levels are included in all environmental impact statements for major road schemes. Objections can be made on a wide range of grounds to proposed road developments, including the impact of increased noise, and objectors may raise their concerns at a public inquiry. The approval process for road projects, operated by An Bord Pleanála, can require modifications to be made to the scheme in relation,inter alia, to noise mitigation, and such modifications have been imposed as required.
Given the above approach, regulations have not been made under section 77 of the Roads Act, 1993, in relation to noise mitigation on newly constructed roads nor are such regulations at present proposed. Section 77 does not provide for the payment of compensation to affected parties.