RPS was appointed by the Department of Housing, Planning & Local Government to prepare the SEA and AA for the National Planning Framework (NPF).
The plan, published in 2018, is a national document that will guide strategic planning and development for the country over the next 20 years. The objective of the NPF is to establish a broad national plan for the Government in relation to the strategic planning of urban and rural areas, to secure regional development, and to secure the co-ordination of regional spatial and economic strategies and city and county development plans.
It aims to ensure sustainable growth in economic, social and environmental terms, as the population grows by a projected one million people. It focuses on economic development and investment in housing, water services, transport, communications, energy, health and education infrastructure.
Following scoping of the SEA in 2016, the SEA team undertook the assessment of national policy objectives to inform the development of the NPF for public consultation in 2017.
The final SEA Statement provides information on the decision-making process. It records how environmental considerations have been integrated into the NPF. It also summarises how the SEA environmental report, submissions and observations made by the public and designated statutory consultees have been taken into account during the preparation of the NPF.