2. AIMS OF STRATEGIC ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT
2.1 SEA can proactively contribute to the plan preparation process by ensuring that the environmental effects of development strategies and proposals are fully understood. The SEA provides information to support the development of the plan, but is not a part of the plan itself.
2.2 The central aim of SEA is to help ensure that the environment is given the same level of consideration as social and economic factors within the plan. It can do this by promoting:
- integration of environmental information into the plan preparation and adoption process;
- early dialogue with consultees, particularly those with environmental expertise, but also the wider public;
- full and objective consideration of alternatives to ensure that the best environmental options are identified and taken on board as far as possible; and
- transparency of decision-making, through the publication of the post-adoption SEA statement.
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