Assam Science Society (ASA) has expressed deep concern over some of the clauses proposed in the Draft Environment Impact Assessment or EIA Notification, 2020.
The clauses in the draft have been proposed by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC).
The EIA notification has been severely opposed by the ASA, who has alleged that MoEFCC has made attempts to dilute the very objective of the EIA process through such clauses of the draft notification.
ASA, in a statement, said there are several discrepancies in the draft notification.
"If allowed to go along then this may lead to long-term adverse impacts on the environment of the country," the ASA statement said.
"For example, the procedure of prior environmental clearance to the industrial projects should not be interfered with, viewing it from the standpoint of ease of doing business," the ASA statement said.
"The EIA notification, if allowed, may dilute the very objectives of the EIA process, leading to irreversible environmental damage," the statement added.
The ASA in the statement further said that these damages may occur mainly in the biodiversity hotspots areas of the country and this will have an irreversible impact for generations to suffer.
"The Assam Science Society opposes any provision in the rules for ex-post-facto environmental clearance, dilution of the EIA process by placing some industrial projects in category ‘B2’, to make them immune to the provision of securing clearance from the National Board of Wildlife even if they are proposed to be located within the eco-sensitive zones, etc," the statement added.
The ASA further alleged that with this notification, some industrial activities, or projects, which have high potential to impact the natural environment adversely, are now sought to be enumerated in the ‘B2’ category to facilitate their immunity from appearing before the Environment Appraisal Committee.
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