The Environmental impact assessment is the process of evaluating the proposed project’s environmental impact. The EIA was notified by the Environmental Protection Act 1986. The EIA provides a cost-effective method to eliminate adverse environmental effects of developmental projects. It also encourages industries to adopt strategies to mitigate the impacts in the initial phase of the planning stage. This process effectively links the environment and infrastructure developments more sustainably. EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry enables decision-makers to calculate the effect of the developmental activities on the environment well before the implications of the project and also get the details of its impact on the ongoing project in the industries.
Importance of Chemical Fertilizers and the need for EIA
- Chemical fertilisers benefit plants by providing deficient nutrients, but they also adversely affect the environment when untreated chemical fertilisers are discharged into water bodies. One such impact is that the eutrophication of freshwater bodies means excessive growth of water plants and algae. This can destroy the aquatic ecosystem and adversely affect human health when cyanobacteria enter the food chain. So to mitigate these effects, the EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry plays an important role.
- Chemical fertiliser has become very important to modern agriculture to feed the growing population. But, the problem arises when improper disposal of fertiliser effluents, such as when a solid waste generated from the chemical fertiliser industry is disposed of in dumpsites surrounding the fertiliser industry, causes an adverse effect on the environment. However, the EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry will help the organisation effectively plan and implement the solid waste management system.
- The chemical fertiliser industry mainly generates waste such as organics, nitrates, alcohols, ammonia, phosphorous, and heavy metals like cadmium. The percolation of these minerals may impact soil and water bodies.
- The construction of chemical fertiliser industries in the risk-prone area or any area notified as a protected area may cause adverse effects on the flora and fauna of the habitat.
To mitigate these effects, the guidelines and the EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry report are necessary to protect and safeguard the environment.
The list of assessments under EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry
The EIA would address the following post-factory scenario for providing the Environment Clearance for chemical fertiliser industries.
- Meteorology and air quality
- Hydrology and water quality
- Solid wastes discharges
- Noise and vibration assessment
- Flora and fauna impact
- Cultural and Socio-Economic impact
- Sensitive targets
- Transport system
- The site and its surroundings
- Treatment methods and disposal of waste
- Occupational safety and health
- Recovery and reuse of waste
- Environmental management
- Human settlement impact
Reports that are to be submitted as per the 2006 EIA notification
The pre-feasibility report should include the project information, considering the selected site’s environmental sensitivities, raw materials, technology options, efficiency, and availability. The information required in the pre-feasibility report varies from case to case, even in the same sector, depending on the plant’s local environmental settings. The following are the details required to get EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry.
- Description of the project (particularly physical characteristics, production process, emissions, etc.).
- An outline of the main alternatives decided by the organisation
- A description of environmental aspects that are likely to be affected by the project
- A description of the measures that are taken to prevent, reduce and, where possible, offset any significant adverse effects on the environment
- The mentioning of any difficulties encountered by the project team
Submission of Form 1 under 2006 EIA notification
The information given in the pre-feasibility report may also be applicable to form 1
Application for Prior Screening for Environmental Clearance
Identifying the project site and conducting a pre-feasibility study is a prerequisite to applying for the prior environmental clearance in Form 1. The proponent has to submit the filled-in Form 1 along with the pre-feasibility report and draft ToR for EIA studies to the concerned Authority, i.e., the MoEF for Category A projects.
Steps involved in assessing EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry
All the chemical fertiliser plant projects, including expansion and modernisation with increased production capacity and change in product mix, require a prior environmental clearance. All the chemical fertiliser projects are classified as A category based on their pollution impacts. Following are the steps involved in EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry scrutinisation
- Submission of application by the proponent (form 1 and pre-feasibility report)
- Scoping and communication of points of coverage for EIA
- Submission of draft EIA for public consultation
- Conducting public hearings by SPCB/PCC
- Submission of proceeding of public opinion by SPCB
- Submission of final EIA by the proponent after improving EIA
- Appraisal by EAC
- Decision of MoEF
The guidelines of EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry
The following are the guidelines the stakeholder should consider while planning the chemical industries to minimise possible environmental impacts.
The factors need to be concerned while planning chemical fertiliser industries
Some of the natural life-sustaining systems and some specific land uses are sensitive to industrial impacts becauseof the nature and extent of fragility. To protect such sites, industries maymaintain the following distances as far as possible from the specific areas listed.
- Avoid developing plants in ecologically or sensitive areas within a 5 Km radius.
- Avoid Flood Plain of the Riverine System, preferably ½ km away from the flood plain or modified flood plain.
- Avoid Coastal Areas, preferably half km from the high tide line (HTL).
- Transport/Communication System preferably ½ km away from highway and railway
- Avoid Major Settlements (3,00,000 population) Areas.
Other factors under EIA for chemical fertiliser industries
In any particular selected site, the following factors must also be recognised
- No forest land shall be converted into non-forest activity to establish the industry.
- No prime agricultural land shall be converted into an industrial site
- The land acquired shall be sufficiently large to provide space for appropriate green cover, including green belts around the battery limit of the industry.
- Enough space should be provided for storing recyclable solid wastes so that these wastes could be available for possible reuse.
- Lay out of the industry that may come up in the area must conform to the landscape of the site without affecting the scenic features of that place.
- Associated townships of the industry may be created in a space having a physiographic barrier between the industry and the township.
Documents required for EIA filing
- Detailed Project Description
- Project-related details
- Site or Layout Plan
- Proof of installed machinery
- Proof of Land Ownership/ Lease document, if any
- ID proof of Signatory
- Quality test Report
- Explanation of mitigation options adopted
- Proof of Electricity bill
- Proof of water connection
The Environmental impact assessment process analyses the chemical fertiliser projects’ socio, economic and environmental impact. Identifying these aspects helps the proponent to know the best efficient method to implement their project. Thus it helps in creating environmentally friendly projects. The EIA for Chemical Fertilizer Industry thoroughly studies the proposed project’s possible consequences and steps to mitigate them.