NEW DELHI: While there have been instances of project proponents seeking environment clearance on fictitious data, the Union Environment Ministry has now directed Expert Appraisal Committees (EAC) to not seek unnecessary details related to environmental impact of the project to prevent delay in accordance with approval.
The ministry has issued an order, saying during the review meetings for streamlining the Environment Clearance (EC) process, it has come to notice that many EACs are prescribing EC conditions, which are not measurable or monitorable. “In this regard, the member secretaries of the EACs are requested to avoid prescribing ambiguous EC conditions and to ensure that all the conditions that are prescribed are specific to the project and are measurable and can be monitored,” it said.
The ministry had in March and May this year issued two orders for streamlining the essential details sought (EDS), additional details sought (ADS) and prescription of specific environmental clearances conditions by EACs.
“During review of the pendency at division level, it has come to notice that some sectors are seeking unnecessary and unreasonable details in the form of EDS during Terms of Reference/Environment Clearance which are neither required or mandated as per existing rule position/guidelines/OMs, resulting into undue delay in EC process,” said the ministry’s later order.
It further said that this has been viewed very seriously and all member secretaries are hereby directed to maintain consistency in examination of the proposal and raising EDS. “No such EDS shall be raised which is neither relevant for the purpose of appraisal of the project nor required as per TOR/existing rule position.”