EIB Public Register - Frequently asked questions

EIB Public Register - Frequently asked questions

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Why has the EIB set up a public register of environmental documents?

The EIB decided to set up a Public Register of environmental documents to enhance the transparency of its operations. In accordance with Regulation (EC) N°1367/2006 (the Aarhus Regulation) Community institutions and bodies shall organise the environmental information which is relevant to their function and which is held by them, with a view to its active and systematic dissemination to the public.

You can find more detailed information here:
Regulation (EC) N°1367/2006 (Article 4)

What is the relationship between the EIB Public Register and the other parts of the EIB’s website?

They are complementary. If you are looking for general information and documents on the EIB’s main activities, you should first consult the other parts of the website, which extensively inform the public about our activities. The public register, on the other hand, is a specific transparency tool which focuses on the environmental and social documents held by the Bank.

What type of information/documents does the Public Register contain?

The Public Register currently includes the key project-related environmental and social documents held by the Bank, as well as some of the key environmental policy documents, namely:

  • EIB Environmental and Social Data Sheets (ESDS), which summarise the EIB’s environmental and social appraisal of individual projects. ESDSs are published on the Public Register following project approval by the EIB Board of Directors. The EIB Public Register contains ESDSs for projects approved from 2012 onwards.
  • EIB Environmental and Social Completion Sheets (ESCS), which summarise the Bank’s assessment of environmental and social issues at project completion stage and are published on the Register after the completion of the EIB investment, and if the ESDS for the project has already been published.
  • Non-Technical Summaries (NTS) of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) carried out by the project promoters and published on the Register during project appraisal when received by the EIB.
  • The full Environmental Impact Assessment Studies/Statements/Reports for all projects, where applicable.
  • Social documentation, such as Environmental and Social Management Plans (ESMP), Resettlement Action Plans (RAP), Stakeholder Engagement Plans (SEP), Livelihood and Restoration/Compensation Plans, Resettlement Policy Frameworks, and Indigenous Peoples Development Plans. If applicable, these are published once available to the Bank.
  • In addition, the Public Register also includes key environmental policy documents, reports, and guidelines, such as the EIB Environmental and Social Handbook, and Carbon Footprint Reports.

Does the public register contain all of the environmental and social documents held by the Bank?

No. The public register strikes a balance between its transparency objective and the administrative reality of the EIB. The public register currently contains both documents related to the projects financed by the Bank, which constitute the key part of the EIB’s activity, as well as some of the key environmental policy documents, strategies and guidelines produced by the EIB since 2012. Other documents such as brochures, press releases or other documents which might indirectly refer to the environment are already published on the Bank website and can be easily accessed by the public.

Regarding the projects financed by the Bank, each project generates its own unique collection of documentation, which can change over time either in format or naming. In certain cases, the Bank might receive documents containing varying levels of environmental information regarding its operations (for example, studies or reports provided by a project promoter or other third party) along with commercially sensitive information. These documents are currently not published on the Register and their public disclosure is handled in line with the provisions of the EIB Group Transparency Policy (see below). The EIB’s resources would not allow us to formally register and provide online access to every single environmental and social document/information that we hold. This would be in contradiction with rules of confidentiality and proportionality, or simply very difficult because of technical constraints. However, we seek to grant the widest possible access to environmental and social information related to our activities. The public register therefore currently contains the main standardised environmental and social documents that it holds regarding its operations.

Also note that the public register currently contains documents related to projects financed by the Bank from 2012 onwards and does not apply retroactively. However, the fairly detailed information that we provide in relation to this public register, as well as in our “Guide to accessing environmental and social information/documents held by the EIB”, provides a good insight into the type of environmental and social documents which we hold.

Will the public Register develop?

Yes. The EIB is progressively developing the register and its content and technical features will continue to develop in the future.

The EIB welcomes comments and suggestions from all stakeholders as to how to further improve the Public Register.

How can I ask for access to documents that are not directly available in the public register?

You may consider to submit an application for access to documents in line with the EIB Group Transparency Policy. Application for access to documents can be sent to the EIB Infodesk. Alternatively, the EIB can be contacted through its external offices. Queries regarding details of a specific project, in particular when it is under appraisal by the EIB, should preferably be addressed directly to project promoters. The Bank does not object to project promoters, borrowers, or other competent parties making information available on their relationship and arrangements with the EIB.