Roadmap on integrating ecological aspects in spatial planning policy
Key areas for building capacity and inter-sectoral dialogue
Within Work Package 6 of the ConnectGREEN project, the involved partners from Hungary, Serbia, Slovakia and Romania started an initiative to support the fitness check process of the EIA/SEA Directive. The partners consider that the first step to be taken is to provide “national roadmaps” for they are essential tools in further contributing to the reconciliation between conservation and spatial planning. Concrete steps with clear guidance will be additionally jointly developed with stakeholders from key sectors on how to best integrate ecological corridors into spatial planning. The partners started the distributions of these roadmaps, especially among spatial planners who need to improve their overview related to ecological corridors by having not only translated information in their technical language but also simple-to-follow and -use tools. In this way, as also stated by spatial planners in various consultation meetings, concrete ways to integrate ecological corridors into spatial planning shall be more straightforward and effective. The roadmaps can be used as communication and advocacy tools to promote integrated policy and legislative approaches, as well as to create the basis for improving the sectorial legislation.
During the development of these roadmaps, several practical problems have been identified in connection with EIA processes related to infrastructure projects which can influence the effective protection of ecological connectivity. Several suggestions have been formulated on the arising problems. In this document, the connection has been outlined between the European Union Directive on Environmental Impact Assessments (2014/52/EU) and the formulated suggestions based on national roadmaps, in some cases with formulating proposals for the amendment of the EIA Directive.
Based on the national roadmaps, a detailed report on the possibilities to improve the EIA Directive was elaborated.