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Environment Impact Assessment (EIA)

Topics Covered:


  1. Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.


Environment Impact Assessment (EIA)


What to study?

  • For Prelims: Kalasa- Banduri project.
  • For Mains: All about EIA.


Context: Karnataka Neeravari Nigam Ltd., which is executing the Kalasa-Banduri project worth nearly Rs. 850 crore, has claimed that the drinking water project is out of the purview of Environment Impact Assessment (EIA).


About Kalasa- Banduri project:

  • The Kalasa-Banduri Nala is a project undertaken by the Government of Karnataka to improve drinking water supply to the Districts of Belagavi, Dharwad and Gadag.
  • It involves building across Kalasa and Banduri, two tributaries of the Mahadayi river to divert 7.56 TMC of water to the Malaprabha river, which supplies the drinking water needs of the districts.


About EIA:

Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) is a formal process used to predict the environmental consequences of any development project. Environment Impact Assessment in India is statutory backed by the Environment Protection Act in 1986, which contains various provisions on EIA methodology and process.


Rationale behind EIA: EIA looks into various problems, conflicts and natural resource constraints which may not only affect the viability of a project but also predict if a project might harm to the people, their land, livelihoods and environment. Once these potential harmful impacts are predicted, the EIA process identifies the measures to minimize those impacts.

The objective of the EIA is to: Identify the environmental, social and economic impacts of a project prior to taking a decision on its implementation. Mitigation of harmful impacts and maximizes the beneficial effects.

Once the assessment is complete, the EIA findings are communicated to all stakeholders viz. developers, investors, regulators, planners, politicians, affected communities etc. On the basis of the conclusion of EIA process, the government can decide if a project should be given environment clearance or not. The developers and investors can also shape the project in such a way that its harms can be mitigated and benefits can be maximized.


Sources: the Hindu.