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|Title:||Environmental impact assessment of roads and highway projects|
Dev, Pankaj Dutt
|Abstract:||The roads and highway projects are lifeline of any country. They are also important for the building the nation and are mirror of country’s development. However, most of these road and highway projects on account of their location, route alignment and associated activities are invariably accompanied by significant environmental and social impacts during different phases (viz., Pre-construction, Construction and Operational phase) of the project. The nature of these impacts could be either positive or negative depending upon their potential to favourably or adversely affect the surrounding environment and also the resident community. While favourably viewing the positive impacts on the environment and community, it is also imperative to develop an appropriate and sound Environmental Management Plan (EMP) and execute it on the field/impacted area of the project to minimise and mitigate various adverse environmental and social impacts. In view of their significant environmental implications,roads and highway projects have been brought under the purview of the EIA Notification dated Sept. 14th, 2006 requiring “Environmental Clearance” (EC) either from Central Government (i.e., Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) (Category ‘A’ Project) or at State Level from State Environmental Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA) (Category ‘B’ Project) if they meet certain conditions specified under the EIA Notification. As per the requirement of EIA, the project has to follow specified procedures which amongst other requirements also include conducting “Public Consultation” including “Public Hearing” to include and incorporate views of various stakeholders into decision making process. The EIA ensures that various Acts, Rules and Regulations for preservation, conservation and management of the environment along with R & R (Resettlement & Rehabilitation) issue are appropriately taken care of in the suggested EMP. Recently, the role of EIA of Roads and Highways have become more important as Central Government is undertaking widening and upgrading of various National Highways throughout the country under the different phases of National Highway Development Programme (NHDP). The present paper briefly describes provisions and procedure for carrying out EIA for the Roads and highways along with the EMP for mitigating various negative environmental impacts during different phases of the project.|
|ISSN:||0975-2412 (Online); 0771-7706 (Print)|
|Appears in Collections:||BVAAP Vol.17(2) [December 2009]|
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