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Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA)

The proposed Strategic Environmental Assessment Directive (COM(99)73), which is currently in consultation, is seen as the second phase in the process begun in 1985 with the adoption of the EIA Directive for projects. The European Commission has amended the proposed SEA Directive to address a limitation inherent in project EIA, namely that a number of important policy decisions will have been taken before the project level is reached which then limit the room for manoeuvre at the detailed project level (EC, 1999).