A handbook on how to comply with the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) Directive in developing the Structural Fund programmes 2007-2013 is now available on-line. SEA is the key tool for local authorities to "green" their plans and projects within the Structural Fund objectives. From 2007 onwards new projects under the Structural Funds have to comply with the SEA Directive.

The handbook, developed by the “Greening Regional Development Programmes” network, a European-wide partnership funded by the INTERREG IIIC, can be used for the SEA of other development programmes.

It contains sections on general principles for management of SEA, recommended steps in the SEA process, common myths about SEA, key documents, references and guidance. The SEA Directive came into force on 21 July 2004. For the first time in cohesion policy history, the SEA requirements may apply to new projects, particularly if they include projects covered by the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Directive.