C7.6 Linking Strategic Environmental Assessment


C7.6.1 Strategic Environmental Assessment and Sustainability

Sustainability is at the heart of SEA. Article 1 of the Directive states that its objective is “to provide for a high level of protection of the environment and to contribute to the integration of environmental considerations into the preparation and adoption of plans and programmes with a view to promoting sustainable development”.

To ensure that the full range of sustainable development issues is included in the SEA process, the Responsible Authorities should include the social and economic effects, as well as the environmental.

This already occurs in some situations. In England, the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 makes Sustainability Appraisal mandatory for Regional Spatial Strategies and Local Development Documents. In Wales, the Act makes Sustainability Appraisal mandatory for Local Development Plans.