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Title: Advancing practice relating to SEA alternatives

Developing and assessing alternatives is a key and central stage to Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA). However, research has repeatedly reported this stage as one of the most poorly undertaken aspects of the SEA process. Current practice limitations include belated consideration of reasonable alternatives, narrow scope of alternatives that often include unrealistic or retrofitted options, limited stakeholder and public involvement in their identification, assessment and selection, lack of systematic approaches to their assessment and comparison, and inadequate reporting of the ‘storyline’ on how they were identified, what the potential impacts are and why the preferred alternative was selected. These issues have resulted in objections and judicial reviews. On the positive side, a number of good practice case studies enable extraction of key lessons and formulation of a set of general recommendations to advance practice in SEA alternatives. In this paper, practical guidance on the identification and development of alternatives, their assessment and comparison, selection of the preferred option, and documentation of the process and the reasons for selection is provided and discussed to frame good practice approaches. - Highlights: • Alternatives are one of the most poorly completed aspects of Strategic Environmental Assessment. • Current practice limitations need to be addressedmore » to enhance SEA effectiveness. • A set of recommendations are extracted from good practice case studies. • These recommendations can be applied across jurisdictions and sectors and tailored as necessary.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4]
  1. School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2 (Ireland)
  2. Levett-Therivel Sustainability Consultants (United Kingdom)
  3. School of Agriculture and Food Science, University College Dublin, Dublin 4 (Ireland)
  4. School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin, Dublin 4 (Ireland)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22479743
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Environmental Impact Assessment Review; Journal Volume: 53; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2015 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; DOCUMENTATION; ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENTS; ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS; ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION; LEGAL ASPECTS; RECOMMENDATIONS; REVIEWS