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Developing and testing a policy environmental assessment checklist for biodiversity conservation

Genter, S., Moore, S.A. and Bailey, J. (2008) Developing and testing a policy environmental assessment checklist for biodiversity conservation. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal, 26 (3). pp. 189-200.

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Strategic environmental assessment (SEA) and policy environmental assessment (PEA), the term used to describe the application of SEA at the policy level, are widely accepted as means of including environmental concerns in decision-making. This paper develops and tests a checklist for assessing policies with a biodiversity focus, drawing on principles from PEA and biodiversity conservation. The development and testing of such a checklist has been rarely reported in the literature. The checklist was applied to five natural resource management policies in Western Australia and the 19 policy workers involved in the study were then asked to reflect on the checklist's usefulness. A key finding was that the checklist allowed policy workers to report against PEA and biodiversity conservation principles. Another was that when the assessed policies were closely aligned with rational decision-making, the checklist proved to be reproducible (a desirable attribute), and easy to use. Lastly the context within which the policies were developed strongly influenced how policy workers responded to the checklist.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Environmental Science
Publisher: Beech Tree Publishing
Copyright: © IAIA
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