Flora and fauna are as such very collective terms, so dismissing of a permit cannot just take place based on this, it was necessary for there to be proper assessment done to check if the increase in these collective concepts indeed changes a pre-existing assessment drastically reeling that the ‘more prejudicial’ standpoint is met. It is necessary to have adequate proof to show that relevant flora and fauna are affected so adversely so as to cancel permit immediately.
Why was the Director of EPD’s decision found not to have been Wednesbury unreasonable?
Wednesbury unreasonableness is identified as the criteria that are required for the assessment of an application in the context of a judicial review (Rivers, 2006). This is usually required when the court is going to make a decision that would have an impact on the public. Now according to this, doctrine called the Wednesbury unreasonableness, some decision or statement could be called as Wednesbury unreasonable. For the decision to be called as such it had to be so irrational or unreasonable that any other reasonable and sane person whose actions are also reasonable would not make this decision. The reasonableness test was established in the Associated Provincial Picture Houses Ltd v Wednesbury Corporation (1948) 1 KB 223 and has been applied in such contexts. Now the applicant has alleged that the Director Decision was Wednesbury unreasonable because some of the statements were seen to be highly misleading or had inadequate information presented in it.
The Judge held that the Wednesbury unreasonableness criteria cannot be held for the director. It was stated that the director could not assume that the habitat would have spotted seahorses in large numbers just because the place has a few seahorses. Thus, it would be a reasonable assumption to understand that Plover Cove where the seahorses were spotted, which need not necessarily mean that there is a significant population. Given this context, it could be held that director was not quite unreadable to consider that the statement was misleading. He could not be Wednesbury unreasonable as he cannot consider the presence of one or two of the seahorses as a large ecological impact assessment. Any reasonable person with a reasonable form of thinking would not assume, one or two sightings would mean there is a significant population. Therefore, the judge rejected the claim made that the director of the Environmental protection department was Wednesbury unreasonable
Why did the Appeal Court rule the CE’s decision in Council was not illegal?
The CE’s decision in council is not illegal. This is because the contention made by the applicant that the CE had failed to assess for whether there were changes impact to flora and fauna that were being more prejudicial could not be proven. Additionally, the CEIC has worked under the guidance and information as provided from different contexts. Material that were presented by the EIA, the EP and the AFCD surveys were all included in decision making, hence the CE decision making had a proper interpretation of the ‘more prejudicial’ undertaking. Since they were following the rules, the CE action hence was not illegal.