The objective of analytical strategic environmental assessment (ANSEA) is to provide a decision-centred approach to the SEA process. The ANSEA project evolved from the realisation that, in many cases, SEA, as currently practised, is not able to ensure an appropriate integration of environmental values. The focus of SEA is on predicting impacts, but the tool takes no account of the decision-making processes it is trying to influence. At strategic decision-making levels, in turn, it is often difficult to predict impacts with the necessary exactitude. The decision-making sciences could teach some valuable lessons here. Instead of focusing on the quantitative prediction of environmental consequences, the ANSEA approach concentrates on the integration of environmental objectives into decision-making processes. Thus, the ANSEA approach provides a framework for analysing and assessing the decision-making processes of policies, plans and programmes (PPP). To enhance environmental integration into the decision-making process, decision windows (DW) can be identified. The approach is designed to be objective and transparent to ensure that environmental considerations are taken into account, or - from an ex-post perspective - to allow an evaluation of how far environmental considerations have been integrated into the decision-making process under assessment. The paper describes the concepts and the framework of the ANSEA approach and discusses its relation to SEA and the EC Directive.
Wuppertal Institut für Klima, Umwelt, Energie