It was confirmed in mid-June 2021 that the Department of Environment of Bangladesh had released Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Guidelines for Industries (published in February 2021). In Bangladesh, Initial Environmental Examination (IEE) and EIA are required under the regulations for obtaining Environmental Clearance Certificate for certain categories of projects as defined in the Environment Conservation Rule, 1997 (see Annex 1 of the Rule). The Guidelines are regarded as guidelines for industries subject to EIA and present six steps of the EIA processes (screening, scoping, baseline data generation, impact assessment, mitigation of impacts, and environmental management plan).
Determine the suitability of a site for industry or projects based on a variety of criteria including air and water quality, ecology, waste disposal, and noise (see Table 3.1).
- Identify the scope of the EIA study
- Identify the information necessary for decision making
- Determine the key issues and significant impacts and risks to be considered
Baseline data generation
Environmental baseline data is required as preliminary information for conducting the EIA and should be a comprehensive data covering the identified study area.
- Physical components: landforms, drainage, land use patterns, meteorological data, air quality, water quality, physical infrastructure, etc.
- Biological components: biodiversity of the site, habitat areas of the water body, products of the ecosystem, etc.
- Social and economic components: demographics, economic activities and occupational patterns, dependence on natural resources, data on land acquisition and displacement of population, etc.
Impact assessment of the EIA involves three main phases, each stage is outlined in the Guidelines (see Table 6.3 for criteria related to environmental parameters).
- Identify in more detail and specificity the impacts under investigation associated with each phase of the project and the activities to be undertaken.
- Predict the nature, magnitude, extent, duration, and other characteristics of major impacts.
- Evaluate the significance of any residual impacts that cannot be mitigated.
Mitigation of impacts
The objective of this step is to minimize or ameliorate adverse impacts by avoiding impacts, finding better alternatives and methods, and adopting mitigation measures. The following points shall be clearly described in the EIA report.
- Impacts to be mitigated
- Expected effects in terms of reducing or preventing impacts
- Alternative measures as the next best solution
- Costs (as needed) and appropriateness for adoption
- Implementation plan for putting the measures into practice
Environmental management plan
The environmental management plan should include mitigation measures to reduce the environmental impacts that may occur during the implementation of the industry or projects. Environmental monitoring should be designed to provide information on the actual impacts of activities, compliance with environmental operating conditions, and the effectiveness of environmental mitigation measures (see 8.2.1 for recommended items and format for the environmental management plan). The evaluation of monitoring results is necessary to ensure that environmental objectives are achieved. If needed, project modifications or remedial measures should be taken to address unforeseen impacts.
The Guidelines also outlines the environmental policies and legislation in Bangladesh.
The Guidelines can be downloaded from the following URL.