Mandatory and Spontaneous Processes of Impact Assessment: A Comparative Study referred to Sardinia, Italy

Andrea de Montis, Stefano de Montis


The relationships between human settlements and contextual ecological domains can be
currently assessed according to different institutional paths: mandatory procedures, such as
the environmental impact assessment (EIA) and, recently, the strategic environmental
assessment (SEA); and voluntary procedures, such as the certifications released according
to the family of ISO 14.000 regulations. These systems coexist and show different goals
and inspiring principles, sometimes overlapping other times complementing each other.
Anyhow, they attempt in different patterns to protect and enhance the corresponding
agricultural and forestry systems.
In the context of the above, the aim of this paper is to discuss some trends about both
mandatory and voluntary procedures of environmental evaluation and to provide scientific
bases to compare the framework of these “green” policies with the spectra of Sardinian
agricultural and forestry systems.

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