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What is it?

The environmental and climate change screening is a mandatory process that allows to reflect on the environmental and climate risks and opportunities of an intervention, and helps decide on the need to explore in more detail such risks and/or opportunities through the use of specific tools (namely, Strategic Environmental Assessment, Environmental Impact Assessment and Climate Risk Assessment).

What can it be used for?

Its primary objective is to decide on whether a Strategic environmental assessment (SEA), an Environmental impact assessment (EIA) and/or a Climate risk assessment (CRA) are required for an intervention.

When can it be used?

During the design phase. In most cases, if a SEA, and EIA or a CRA are required, these need to be prepared while drafting the action. In some cases, for instance to feed policy dialogue in the context of Budget Support, a SEA can be launched at the start of Implementation.

Who can use it?
  • All EU staff involved in design.
What are its strengths?
  • Even if an SEA, EIA or CRA is not required, the screening process allows to identify key environmental and climate related issues that can be addressed during the second step of the design phase.
What are its limitations?


Key elements

The screening process consists of three components:

  • Part A: SEA Screening. It consists of a screening list and a questionnaire.
  • Part B: EIA Screening. Projects are classified under three categories: Category A interventions always require an EIA; Category B interventions may require an EIA based on selection criteria: and Category C interventions which do not require an EIA.
  • Part C: CRA Screening. This process is based on a questionnaire that allows to examine the following aspects of an intervention: project exposure, potential impacts and risk mitigation capacity

Data/information. Application of the screenings is based on readily available data for a project. The more information available, the easier will it be to screen the project (e.g. location, production capacity).

Time. The screening process can be completed in half-a-day, although this process may take longer if it becomes necessary to find out further project details that are not readily available.

Skills. The screening process can be performed by one person that is familiar with the project proposal. Awareness of environmental and climate change risks in the sector is an added value, which can be complemented by expertise from the relevant services in HQ if necessary.

Facilities and materials. N/A

Financial costs and sources. N/A

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Where to find it

The European Commission, 2016. Tools and Methods Series, Guidelines N.6. Integrating the environment and climate change into EU international cooperation and development (Annexe 3, nvironment and climate change screening)   

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