Including health in environmental impact assessments: is an institutional approach useful for practice?
Harris PJ, Haigh F: Including health in environmental impact assessments: is an institutional approach useful for practice? Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal 2015:1-7.
Internationally the inclusion of health within environmental impact assessment (EIA) has been shown to be limited. While health-focused research has focused on the technical provision of health information, policy analysis theory may enable description and explanation of the institutional conditions surrounding health inclusion in EIA. However, whether this framework is considered useful by practitioners has yet to be tested. To investigate this, data were collected via a workshop (n = 22) and the results were analysed using ?Institutionalist? units of analysis (ideas, actors, organisations and institutions). These results were then emailed to participants who were asked to undertake a follow-up survey about the analysis and approach (n = 9). The workshop results suggested various influences on how and why health is considered or not in EIAs. Overall the survey respondents agreed that the approach was conceptually and practically useful but that the framework alone is insufficient and further work is needed to convince potential users of the value of health in EIA. The findings support the need for more detailed research.
Draft Residential Densities Strategy Mackay: Health Impact Assessment
Carless, F. & Gunning, C. (2011). Draft Residential Densities Strategy Mackay: Health Impact Assessment. Mackay Public Health Unit, Queensland Health: Mackay.
The Mackay Regional Council area is one of the fastest growing in Queensland, with strong growth forecast over the coming decades. Managing the challenges associated with high population growth is one of the drivers of Council’s Draft Residential Densities Strategy which outlines its vision for more compact urban areas within the region.
Recognition of the relationship between land use planning and health is not new and nationally there is much interest in translating this knowledge into practice. A tool which has emerged to contribute to this practice is Health Impact Assessment (HIA), a process which engages decision makers to consider health impacts in their planning, policy and program deliberations. To identify indirect health impacts that may be associated with the Draft Residential Densities Strategy, Queensland Health initiated a Health Impact Assessment with assistance from the Department of Communities, Mackay Regional Council and the Centre for Health Equity Training Research and Evaluation. Using a rapid HIA process, including collection of data via literature review and stakeholder consultation, and development of a population profile, the HIA project team generated a set of recommendations.
Haigh F (2012) Health Impact Assessment for Policies, Plans and Projects, New Planner. June 2012.6
South East Queensland Regional Plan Health & Social Impact Assessment
Queensland Health, Queensland Department of Communities & Queensland Office of Urban Management
Abstract: A health and social impact assessment of the South East Queensland Regional Plan was undertaken in 2005 (Queensland Government, 2005). It is one of few attempts nationally and globally to apply health and social impact assessment to a regional planning process. The assessment methodology builds on existing evidence-based research, methodologies and the combined professional experience of both health and social impact assessment practices in Queensland. The approach adds further strength and rigour to planning strategies to enhance the health and well-being of communities. The way the South East Queensland Regional Plan is implemented, and how the plan influences access to jobs, education, affordable housing and social infrastructure, and the achievement of social inclusion and connectedness within communities, will be central to future health and well-being of people in South East Queensland.
Health Impact Assessment of Lithgow City Council’s Strategic Plan
Sydney West Area Health Service and Lithgow City Council
This report explains the Health Impact Assessment (HIA) process and presents the findings of the HIA of the Lithgow City Council Strategic Plan, 2007. The primary output of the HIA is a set of evidencebased recommendations geared to informing the decision-making process. These recommendations aim to highlight practical ways to enhance the positive impacts or minimise any negative impacts on health, well being and health inequalities that might arise or exist in response to the Lithgow City Council Strategic Plan.
The Lithgow City Council Strategic Plan is the first long-term plan to be developed by Lithgow City Council in collaboration and consultation with the community and government. It introduces a new framework of strategic planning in the Lithgow local government area, which is driven by the community’s vision and issues. The Plan incorporates the visions and strategies and feeds these into Council’s management and operational plans to deliver actions that ultimately achieve the vision for the community. The objective of the Strategic Plan is to provide the strategic framework for the future development of the Lithgow Local Government Area and to encourage environmental, economic and social sustainability (Lithgow City Council Strategic Plan, 2007, Page 4).
Coffs Harbour Our Living City Settlement Strategy Health Impact Assessment
North Coast Area Health Service and Coffs Harbour City Council
People’s health is influenced by the built, natural and social environments in which they live. Local governments have a crucial role to play in creating environments that promote opportunities for wellbeing and active living. The North Coast Area Health Service and the Coffs Harbour City Council have worked together on a HIA to ensure future plans for the Coffs Harbour Local Government Area consider how the community can make healthy choices the easy choices. The project is supported by the UNSW Centre Health Equity Training, Research and Evaluation (CHETRE).
Bungendore Health Impact Assessment: A rapid HIA of two development scenarios
Greater Southern Area Health Service and Palerang Council
The village of Bungendore is located in the Southern Tablelands of NSW within the Palerang Council local government area. It is estimated that approximately 2000 people now live in the village. Recent population growth in Bungendore has highlighted the need for the provision of services for current and future residents. Planning for Bungendore’s future is especially important and planning processes are currently underway. Feasible and sustainable development outcomes will be examined in this process. In this report, two growth scenarios have been evaluated that investigate the implications of future growth on the health of its residents.
- Bungendore HIA Case Study
- Bungendore HIA Impact Evaluation
- Bungendore HIA Report
- Bungendore HIA Paper
Greater Western Sydney Urban Development Health Impact Assessment
Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils Ltd
This HIA examines potential effects on population health and wellbeing of planned population growth and urban development in Greater Western Sydney (GWS) over the next twenty five years. During this time the population of Sydney is expected to increase by 1.1 million people, 600,000 of whom are anticipated to settle in GWS. This population increase will be accompanied by large scale development of housing, transport, employment and social infrastructure; all changes that can potentially affect the health and wellbeing of new residents and people living across the region.
How this growth is to be managed, in terms of where people live, the transport and other infrastructure that is provided, along with a range of other issues, has a major bearing on the level and type of health impact. Accordingly, this project specifically analyses the Sydney Metropolitan Strategy (2005). Past patterns of growth for Sydney are also reviewed as are other recent comparable metropolitan plans, in order to provide differing perspectives on the planning process and what are reasonable goals and targets to set.