Central Information Flows and Decision-Making Requirements

Central Information Flows and Decision-Making Requirements

Robin J.A. Sharp (European Sustainable Use Specialist Group of IUCN/SSC, UK), Julie A. Ewald (Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, UK) and Robert Kenward (Anatrack Ltd, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2824-3.ch002
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Abstract

Information needs of government for SEA, EIA, and other aspects of biodiversity conservation and sustainable development are studied and reported in this chapter. This includes needs related to biodiversity for land use planning, for operation of the EU Common Agricultural Policy, for agricultural policy more generally, and for Biodiversity Action Plans. Legislation and its implementation are considered at European Union and member state level by direct enquiries and a preliminary questionnaire survey in project partner countries. Preliminary conclusions are drawn and lessons learned for a Pan-European survey.
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Introduction

Work on the “Central Policy Environment” topic, had as its objectives

  • To identify information needs of government for SEA, SIA and other aspects of biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.

  • To determine how that information is obtained.

  • To produce a report detailing the information flows from local and regional to central.

The main Task was for the TESS consortium to gather information on how data for these processes is managed in 4 to 5 states, if possible with different types of environmental governance. After preliminary analysis it was decided (i) to focus on SEA and EIA at high level, since these techniques are embodied in EU law as explained below, (ii) to ignore SIA (sustainability impact assessment) because this is not generally embodied in legislation, and (iii) to include information needs related to biodiversity also for land use planning, for operation of the EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), for agricultural policy generally, and for Biodiversity Action Plans (BAPs) under Article 6 of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

Procedure and Timetable

European Sustainable Use Specialist Group (ESUSG), the lead partner, first investigated (a) EU policy and legislation on EIA and SEA and (b) arrangements in the UK (England) for EIA, SEA, land use planning (LUP) and administration of the CAP, because these all had requirements for environmental, especially biodiversity, information to be collected and used in their decision making systems. This study, together with a draft questionnaire designed to elicit similar information in the other partner countries, was discussed with partners and a revised questionnaire was circulated at the end of March 2009 together with a completed return for the UK as an example to provide guidance.

Returns for this enquiry were received from a partner in each of nine countries (Table 1).

Table 1.
Responses were received for nine countries from the partners listed
CountryOrganization
United KingdomESUSG of IUCN/SSC
TurkeyWWF-Turkey
RomaniaDanube Delta National Institute for R&D
PortugalERENA
PolandPro-Biodiversity Service
HungarySzent Istvan Univ, Inst for Wildlife Conservation
EstoniaIST, Tallin Univ of Technology
GreeceTERO Ltd
SloveniaCentre for Cartography of Fauna and Flora

Partners were asked to complete the returns by 31 May 2009: the first was received in mid-May and the last in mid-October. Analysis was carried out by the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT) by mid-August.

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