Industrialisation is taking its toll on our environment. Industries and various other projects need to keep the pollution down to the minimum. A measurement tool is put in place to ensure optimal use of natural resources for progressive growth, which is called the environment impact assessment.
A procedure is charted out to appraise the impact, both favourable and adverse, of a new project or development on the environment including cultural, socio-economic and human health.
In this post, we shall look at the importance of keskkonnamõju hindamine or environmental impact assessment (EIA) for industries, especially those that can impact the environment adversely such as mining, nuclear power projects and so on. Some industries can cause major health hazards to humans, flora and fauna, and also diminish natural resources.
Need for Impact assessment
It is required to consider the implication of approving a project, and a tool is instituted to identify the impact prior to approval. Assessment needs to be carried out at initial stage to forecast the impact, so that it is possible to find a solution to lessen the adverse effects, and rework the project planning suitable for the local environment. EIA can reduce the time and cost of a project execution, and also avoid clean-up cost, and so it is economically advantageous to use EIA.
EIA practice and procedures are different in each country, but the basic mechanism would have the following phases:
- Appraise impact and find options
- EIA report
- Review the report
- Decision on approval
- Environment auditing
EIA is the most effective and productive way to care for the earth, when possible environment impact is assessed at pre-deployment stage for any new project. A screening is carried out to decide on the projects that needs impact assessment.
Potential impact of a project on environment is identified with the participation of government, experts in the field and public and alternative measures are determined to avoid or lessen the adverse impact like changing the design or site, discontinuing the project or giving compensation for adverse effects.
A Report is made with a brief outline of the proposal, environment impact of the project, proposal for preventing or reducing the adverse impact. This report is called Environment Impact statement (EIS). This report is reviewed by the authorities including the public.
Finally, the decision is made based on the EIS, either to approve or reject the project, and the terms and conditions for the approval.
Execution of the proposal as per EIS is monitored to ensure all measures and improvements occur as per proposal. Checking the compliance is required to ensure that unexpected impact or failure in lessening measures is addressed on time.
Strategic Environment Assessment
Strategic Environment Assessment (SEA) is a systematic process in which environmental aspects are taken into consideration while making policies, plans and programmes. SEA covers extensive range of activities and the time span is longer in comparison to EIA of projects. It is more focus oriented in addressing environment concerns including biodiversity.
Author’s Bio –
Jeff Carter writes articles about the importance of keskkonnamõju hindamine or environmental impact assessment, before starting any construction project, no matter if it is residential or commercial. You could visit their website to discuss with their experts.