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2005). The purpose of an SEA in conflict-affected or post-disaster situations should be to help prevent natural resources from becoming a source of conflict. The SEA process should be designed to ensure that one side is not favoured over another, which would risk exacerbating divisions. It should aim to strengthen or restore natural resource-based livelihoods in resource-scarce settings, and to reduce opportunities for natural resource-based trade to fuel war economies. The SEA process should not jeopardise ongoing peace-building initiatives.

The most appropriate approach to SEA will depend on the particular circumstances to be faced. Hence the position of the SEA approach adopted along the continuum will vary. The worst outcome would be failure to integrate environment into strategic decision making or to consider the linkages between the “pillars” of sustainability, and thus risk policy failure, missed opportunities, wasted resources and even unanticipated negative outcomes. In addition to using the continuum model to describe the progression to integrated assessment, stress is increasingly being placed on the need for SEA to be more “institutioncentred” or “decision-oriented” and to focus on the earliest stages of PPP formulation.

Focus on obtaining project permission, and rarely with feedback to policy, plan or programme consideration. Focus on decision on policy, plan and programme implications for future lower-level decisions. g. from feasibility to project approval). Multi-stage, iterative process with feedback loops. Preparation of an EIA document with prescribed format and contents is usually mandatory. This document provides a baseline reference for monitoring. May not be formally documented. Emphasis on mitigating environmental and social impacts of a specific Emphasis on meeting balanced environmental, social and economic project, but with identification of some project opportunities, objectives in policies, plans and programmes.

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