Overview of Environmental Clearance
Environmental clearance refers to getting government approval for the installation and modification (amendment) of specified projects. It is essential for activities that have the potential to cause severe environmental contamination. The government has produced a comprehensive list of projects, such as mining, thermal power plants, and infrastructure, all requiring environmental approval. The clearance process is necessary for 39 projects today, including screening, scoping, and evaluating the upcoming project. The EIA Notice categorises projects into two categories, Category A and Category B (further subdivided into B1 and B2). The MoEF&CC approves Category A projects, whilst the State Environmental Impact Assessment Authority approves Category B projects. One of the essential foundations of a successful EIA process is public participation. It allows persons directly impacted by a project to express their thoughts on the project's environmental and social implications and increases openness in the EC procedure. Almost all EIA systems include some form of public participation. They are done through public consultation (or discussion) or public involvement (a more interactive and intensive process of stakeholder engagement).
Importance of Public Participation
Public participation is an important stage in the EC process and critical to the success of an EIA. It allows persons impacted by the project to express their concerns about the proposal's social and environmental effects, and it ensures openness within the EC procedure. Virtually every EIA system includes a mechanism for public participation. It might take the form of public engagement or consultation. Most EIA processes involve public engagement. The term public consultation refers to the procedure by which residents' concerns about adverse effects are considered in the EIA research. The importance of this stage has been highlighted
Necessary Papers required for Environmental Clearance
The necessary papers required for obtaining EC may vary depending on the project's nature, scope, and scale. However, some of the commonly required necessary papers include the following:
Requirement on Environmental Clearance
The 1994 EIA Notification made EC essential for all new projects and the expansion/modernisation of existing projects spanning 29 disciplines, including hydro-power, significant irrigation, and flood control projects. Schedule 1 of the 2006 EIA Notification lists 32 distinct categories of projects that require environmental approval. In addition, an industrial colour code was developed, which categorised sectors based on their environmental effect. Depending on their pollution potential, the industries were classified as red, orange, green, or white. Only companies classified as white are free from getting environmental permission.
These are some projects that require environmental approval:
Laws governing Environmental Clearance Certificate
The Environment Protection Act functions as an umbrella law, assisting the central government in coordinating environmental agencies at the federal and state levels.The Environment Act's stated goal is to provide for the conservation and enhancement of the environment and related things.
Environment (Protection) Rules, 1986
The Environment Protection Act is a comprehensive statute that envisions rule-making Authority and spans several aspects of environmental law. The central government is given broad rule-making Authority to carry out the Act's provisions.
EIA Notification (2006)
The Environment Impact Assessment Notification, 2006, was issued under the Environment (Protection) Act of 1986, and it superseded the EIA Notification of 1994. The law specified a precise method for getting prior environmental approval for developing or extending a project, such as projects specified in Schedule 1 or projects for development in unstable regions.If the project involves forestland, the project proponent must get a letter of intent from the Ministry of Industry and NOCs from the SPCBs and the State Forest Department, Site clearance and final environmental approval for constructing and operating any new power plant.
Book a Free Consultation
Get response within 24 hours
Process of Environmental Clearance
Obtaining Environmental Clearance (EC) in India involves several steps, which may vary depending on the nature, scale, and location of the proposed project. The steps involved in obtaining Environmental Clearance in India can be lengthy and complex and may involve multiple rounds of review and consultation. If the requirements specified in the EC are not met, the Appraisal Committee has the Authority to revoke the EC issued for that project. The following are some of the critical steps in the EC process:
Note - Depending on the kind of project, the EC awarded is valid for a specific number of years. If the EC has expired, the project proponent can renew it using the same method.
Environmental Clearance Certificate
Before beginning any new infrastructure or expansion project, an ECcertificate from the central or state pollution control board is necessary. The EC certificate certifies that the project will not harm the environment or society. Clearance or rejection letters are necessary when a project requires both EC and approval under the Forest (Conservation) Act of 1980. Proposals for both are made to the relevant ministries. After obtaining all relevant papers and data from project authorities and having public hearings (if necessary), the environmental assessment and evaluation of the project are completed within 90 days, and the ministry's decision is conveyed within 30 days.
Aggrieved by order of grant of Environmental Certificate
According to the National Environment Appellate Authority Act of 1997, any person who is dissatisfied with the order granting EC in the areas where the industries, operations, or processes shall or shall not be carried out may file an appeal with the Authority within 30 days of the date of the order. If there is a compelling reason for the delay, the Authority may hear the appeal outside this time frame. The appeal must be resolved within 90 days of the date of filing. This can be extended for an additional 30 days.
How Can Corpbiz help?
Corpbiz is a well-known firm in the field of environmental clearance. We provide environmental management and testing services to clients quickly and hassle-free. Our knowledgeable and experienced personnel manage all environmental initiatives most efficiently and cost-effectively as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
The clearance obtained is valid for five years from the construction or operation of the project.The environmental clearance procedure is necessary for projects and includes screening, scoping, and evaluating the upcoming project. The main goal is to analyse the impact of the proposed project on the environment and people and strive to mitigate/minimise it.
The primary goal of EC is to examine the proposed project's impact on the environment and people and to strive to mitigate or minimise the project's impact on the environment and people.
By enrolling on the MoEF websites, you may apply for environmental approvals online. Because it involves a few formalities, it is recommended that you seek professional assistance while filing for an EC Certificate.
There are six stages in EC.
- Scoping Step
- Draft EIA Report Preparation
- Public consultation is the third Stage
- Final EIA preparation
- Assessment and Stage
- Prior Environmental Clearance Grant or Refusal
According to the notification published by the EIA in 2006, with the authorisation of the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change, obtaining an Environmental Clearance is deemed essential for both industries and construction-based projects, which might be existing or new projects.
EC is required regardless of the kind of project in environmentally sensitive locations such as coastal areas, wetlands, archaeological sites, international boundary areas, national parks and sanctuaries, places of scientific and geological importance, and so on.
The laws regulating ECare:
- Environment (Protection) Rules, 1986
- Environment Impact Assessment Notification, 2006