Coordination Mechanisms for Environmental Impact Assessment in Pakistan

(Paper ID: 36)

Saadullah Ayaz and Azfar Hassan Ansari
CONCURENT SESSION 1.2.9. Broader thinking in impact assessment Quarter Horse C: May 15, 2013
IAIA13 Impact Assessment: The Next Generation. Calgary, Alberta. Canada

1. BACKGROUND
• EIA is the primary mean of managing the approval of new development projects in Pakistan. The ‘Section 12’ of the Pakistan Environmental Protection Act (PEPA1997) directs that IEE/EIA is to be conducted where any project is likely to cause adverse environmental effect Coordination between involved actors is crucial for an effective EIA system (as it involves multiple institutions at federal and provincial levels) To ‘review the existing coordination mechanisms between the institutions involved in project formulation to approval and conduction EIA/grant of approval and identify gaps/shortcomings which are impeding the EIA process implementation in Pakistan’ Puts-forth recommendations for improving the coordination between federal and provincial departments for improved coordination for effective implementation of EIA system in Pakistan

OBJECTIVE

IAIA13 Impact Assessment: The Next Generation. Calgary, Alberta. Canada

2. INTRODUCTION
The success of EIA system in Pakistan relies on the effectiveness and cooperation of many complimentary institutions both at federal and provincial levels
During year-2010, an amendment has been made to the Constitution of Pakistan (referred to as ‘18th Constitutional Amendment’). After this, subject of environment (besides others) has been delegated to the provinces.

This devolution has created lacunas for inter-agency coordination, particularly those related to projects/schemes having trans-provincial impacts

3. EXISTING INSTITUTIONAL FRAMEWORK FOR EIA IN PAKISTAN
Institutions involved in EIA/project approval are i. ii. iii. iv. Planning Commission of Pakistan Federal Ministries/Divisions Federal and Provincial Environmental Protection Agencies Provincial Planning & Development Departments

IAIA13 Impact Assessment: The Next Generation. Calgary, Alberta. Canada

4. MAPPING OF EXISTING INSTITUTIONAL COORDINATION MECHANISMS
4.1. Legal Mechanisms
Enactment of provincial environmental laws

4.2. Institutional Mechanisms i. Vertical Coordination between layers of government ii. Inter-agency Coordination iii. Coordination between project proponents and approval forums iv. Coordination regarding overlapping mandates 4.3. Technical Mechanisms i. Limitation of skills and capacities ii. Post-project evaluation (never done) 4.4. Financial Mechanisms
Current schedule of charges are not sufficient
IAIA13 Impact Assessment: The Next Generation. Calgary, Alberta. Canada

5. RECOMMENDATIONS
i. Enactment of Provincial Legal Framework
All provinces have initiated the process of enactment of their own environmental law after the devolution

ii.

Promoting Multi-stakeholder Participation
An enabling environment to enhance multi-stakeholder participation in environmental assessment process needs to be created

iii. Enhancement of Institutional Capacities
Capacities at all levels need to be strengthened for conducting and reviewing environmental examinations

iv. Expert/Institutional Networking
Creation of a well-organized inter-agency/inter-departmental and inter-provincial networks

IAIA13 Impact Assessment: The Next Generation. Calgary, Alberta. Canada

v.

Inter-Provincial Coordination Inter-provincial coordination through formal and informal forums, (like Expert Committees) needs to be created and further strengthened (where exist)

vi. Information Sharing between project proponents/experts and responsible authority/approving forums is essential for improved coordination. Role of virtual networks

vii. Standardization and Accreditation Need for empanelment and/or accreditation of environment consultants/experts involved in conducting the environmental assessment
viii. Removing Financial Barriers Make finances available during feasibility of project. Realistic revision of current schedule of fees ix. Improving Governance Re-structuring and further strengthening of provincial EPAs and Environment Sections within P&DDs
IAIA13 Impact Assessment: The Next Generation. Calgary, Alberta. Canada

Comments, feedback/ Questions?
saad.ayaz@iucn.org

IAIA13 Impact Assessment: The Next Generation. Calgary, Alberta. Canada