The complainant requested various categories of data about pollution incidents over a two-year period. The Maritime & Coastguard Agency (“the MCA”) relied variously relied upon Regulations 12(4)(a) (not held), 12(4)(b) (manifestly unreasonable) and 12(4)(d) of the EIR (material in the course of completion) to withhold information. The Commissioner’s decision is that the request engages Regulation 12(4)(b) of the EIR and that the public interest favours maintaining this exception. However, she also finds that the MCA failed to provide adequate advice and assistance to help the complainant refine his request and therefore Breached Regulation 9 of the EIR. Also, in failing to issue a valid refusal notice within 20 working days, the MCA breached Regulation 14 of the EIR. The Commissioner does not require further steps.
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