Further thoughts May 2015:<br>
Living through the saga of the failed planning consultation for the development around Peckham Rye Station, it became apparent that it was not standard practise in such planning to take a snapshot of the site before development decisions. So attempts to discuss the issues arising from the plan to acquire vacant possession across the whole site, as a prelude to demolition or clearance of all non railway buildings, fell on barren ground. There was no comprehension that there was anything of value in that context, so no mechanism to assess whether there was a special nature of the social and economic life on the site. There needs to be a requirement in defined circumstances for development sites, that potentially exhibit the nature of an SSCI for
an SSCI assessment. In a similar way to the established [https://www.cbd.int/impact/whatis.shtml Environmental Impact Assessment:]
''“UNEP defines Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) as a tool used to identify the environmental, social and economic impacts of a project prior to decision-making. It aims to predict environmental impacts at an early stage in project planning and design, find ways and means to reduce adverse impacts, shape projects to suit the local environment and present the predictions and options to decision-makers.”''
It appears that though the EIP is defined as covering social and economic impacts, it may in practice think only of those impacts arising from the disturbance for the ‘living physical environment’. Maybe the EIP is a suitable mechanism for identifying an SSCI but not used as the full meaning in it of “environmental, social and economic” is lost, ie the impact on the delicate living system of a human micro economy embedded in its symbiotic social and physical habitat.