Appendix C Sample tool: OIT

A basic OIT template is shown below in Table 1. Table 2 provides an explanation of how to populate the table. Table 3 provides a sample rating scale.

The final decision about strategic merit is made by looking down the list of ratings in column 5, keeping in mind the relative importance of each objective.

As the OIT is a basic check for strategic merit, impacts that do not fit under any of the objectives listed should not be included in the table. For example, a smoother road may result in a more comfortable ride for road users; but if there is no explicit government strategic objective that covers ride comfort, the impact should not be included. Impacts that do not affect strategic objectives are irrelevant for assessing strategic merit.

Table 1: Objective Impacts Table (OIT) for a given option
* Specify units–PVB$ or PVC$ or physical quantity
** See Tables 2 and 3 for an explanation of this table and a sample ratings scale.

Source: NGTSM06, Volume 2

Table 2: OIT template for a given option
Objective Impact type Qualitative description Quantitative description Rating
List each government objective relevant to the option.

Objectives listed here should be those established in Step 1.
List the impact types under each objective.

These impacts may be single or multidimensional. For example, if the objective is to ‘improve the environmental performance of the transport system’, impact types could include noise, air quality, biodiversity and water quality.

Impacts may be different for different locations or planning levels.

Some impacts may appear more than once, against different objectives.
For each impact type, describe the impact in qualitative terms. For each impact type, specify the impact in quantitative terms.

This may include physical impacts (such as a reduction in tonnes of CO2 equivalents per annum) calculated over the life of the option.

It may also include monetised benefits and costs. These should be expressed as present values measured over the life of the option, with :PVB $ …’ and ‘PVC $ …’ denoting the present value of a benefit and cost respectively.
Rate the strategic merit of the option.

Strategic merit can be rated using a simple ‘yes/no’ or ‘pass/fail’ system or via a more detailed scale that assigns positive and negative ratings to against each objective.

A sample scale is set out in Table 2 below.
Table 3: OIT options rating scale
Large -ve Major negative impacts with serious, long-term and possibly irreversible effects leading to serious damage, degradation or deterioration of the physical, economic or social environment. Requires a major re-scope of concept, design, location and justification, or requires major commitment to extensive management strategies to mitigate the effect.
Moderate -ve Moderate negative impact. Impacts may be short-, medium- or long-term and impacts will most likely respond to management actions.
Slight -ve Minimal negative impact, probably short-term, able to be managed or mitigated, and will not cause substantial detrimental effects. May be confined to a small area.
Neutral Neutral - no discernible or predicted positive or negative impact.
Slight +ve Minimal positive impact, possibly only lasting over the short-term. May be confined to a limited area.
Moderate +ve Moderate positive impact, possibly of short-, medium- or long-term duration. Positive outcome may be in terms of new opportunities and outcomes of enhancement or improvement.
Large +ve Major positive impacts resulting in substantial and long-term improvements or enhancements of the existing environment.

Source: NGTSM06, Volume 2

Note that there is no hard and fast definition of short, medium and long terms, the following is an indicative guide: short 1–2 years; medium 3–5 years; long – beyond 5 years.