UNECE and the European Union continue to support pilot applications of the Strategic Environmental Assessments (SEA) in Belarus and Georgia in the framework of the European Union Water Initiative Plus programme for the Eastern Partnership Countries (EUWI+). SEA is an essential planning tool for environmentally sustainable economic development, which is enshrined both in the relevant EU acquis and under the SEA Protocol to the UNECE Espoo Convention.
The project is supporting the development of the draft national Strategy of Water Resources Management in the context of Climate Change for the period until 2030 in the Republic of Belarus which is undergoing the SEA procedures. In Georgia, the pilot Alazani-Iori River Basin Management Plan is being developed, following the request of the Government, and is also benefiting from the SEA process.
With the aim to develop national capacity, remote training sessions on the SEA process were organized on 26 March for Belarus and on 6 April for Georgia, which covered evaluation of potential environmental and health effects, alternative planning options, development of mitigation and monitoring measures, and preparation of an environmental SEA report. A total of 16 national experts took part in the training sessions organized through videoconference facilities joined by international experts, who brought in knowledge about SEA standards and shared international best practice examples.
The events were supported by the UNECE secretariat to the Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Water Convention) with funding from the European Union Water Initiative Plus programme for the Eastern Partnership Countries (EUWI+).
For more information: https://www.unece.org/env/water/npd/euwiplus.html