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Our Local Plan has now been submitted for examination.

Sustainability Appraisal

The council is required to consider wider social, environmental and economic effects when preparing plans for the future. It is also required to undertake a Strategic Environmental Assessment of any plans or programmes that are likely to have significant effects on the environment.

Looking up through a tree to the sky

Government guidance considers that it is possible to satisfy the two requirements through a single approach. The first stage of Sustainability Appraisal for the Local development Framework is the preparation of a Scoping Report. The Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report was used as a basis for assessing the sustainability of the options put forward in the Welwyn Hatfield Core Strategy Issues and Options Development Plan Document.

Sustainability Appraisal is central to the planning system and its purpose is to promote sustainable development through the integration of social, environmental and economic considerations into the preparation of new planning documents. The process will test the overall strategy and each policy against sustainability objectives which have been agreed, subject to this consultation.

When preparing plans and programmes it is also a requirement that Local Planning Authorities conduct an environmental assessment. This is in accordance with the requirements of European Directive 2001/42/EC (SEA) to assess the effects of certain plans and programmes on the environment. Government guidance states that Sustainability Appraisal must incorporate the requirements of the SEA directive.

Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report

The first stage of Sustainability Appraisal is the preparation of a Scoping Report which sets the context and sustainability objectives, establishes baseline data and decides on the scope.  The Scoping Report was prepared by Land Use Consultants for Welwyn Hatfield borough during 2008 and went through a consultation period from March to May 2008. The Scoping Report and Appendices are available to download below. 

Comments received were used to update the Sustainability Appraisal framework in the Scoping Report and there may be further updating as the SA process evolves. The updated framework is available to download below.

The Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report was used as a basis for assessing the sustainability of the options put forward in the Welwyn Hatfield Core Strategy Issues and Options Development Plan Document (DPD).

The Scoping Report was also used as the basis for assessing the sustainability of the housing targets put forward in the Welwyn Hatfield Core Strategy ' How Many Homes?' consultation which occurred in June 2011. The informal SA appraisal for the consultation can be viewed under Supporting Documents on our Consultation Portal.

An informal Sustainability Appraisal has also been carried out for the Emerging Core Strategy consultation which occurred from November 2012 to January 2013 and can be viewed under Supporting Documents for that consultation on our Consultation Portal.

A formal SA appraisal will be produced as the Core Strategy progresses towards submission to the Secretary of State.

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