EIA 2020

The EIA draft 2020 have been doing the rounds on various online and social media platforms for a while now. People are doing everything in their hands to educate the rest and to put a stop to this draft from being implemented, which the national and most local medias have shut a blind eye towards.

This clearly depicts where their priorities are at, more on mainstream politics and other topics, putting the people who depend on such mediums in the dark. Unaware.

The very idea of people having to take to social media to get the word about such a devious plan is a clear depiction that we’re in the endgame now. It’s going to be every man for himself from now.

The EIA draft of 2020 is something we as the citizens of this great nation can’t afford to be a part in. It’s for a greater cause, for a better future. If neglected, the consequences coming generations will have to face will be a plenty. It’s now or never.

From elementary schools we are taught about the importance of conservation of mother nature and the dangers of pollution. We’re taught that the earth is our only home, yet and that we should do everything in our hands to protect it from such acts of fellow less concerned beings. 

Several movies and campaigns instituted by conservative environmentalists are more often that not given the spotlight to inform the masses of what we’re in store for. I for one, believe that an educated nation will be a better functioning nation.

The destructions of the Bhopal Gas tragedy needs no introduction. A grave tragedy. Post the Gas tragedy of ‘86, the Government of India brought into action the Environment Protection Act with a concern for the safety of the Public and the Nature.

The EIA under the aforementioned Act of 1986, constitutes a process which prevents the industrial and Infrastructural projects by Individuals and body corporates from being approved without proper oversight. It basically consists of a tool of environmental management forming a part of project approval and decision making.

It ensured that every project would go through the process for obtaining proper environmental clearance certificates , for a better, safer tomorrow.

The point of contention in the draft of  Environment Impact Assessment is post-facto clearance and less public participation of the affected communities. Making the voices of the already barely heard voices, totally mute.

The EIA (Environment Impact Assessment) draft 2020 by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change under the Government of India has a counter regressive approach towards protecting the nature of the Largest democracy in the World. 

The EIA covers numerous projects like mining of various minerals, infrastructure development, industrial projects, thermal nuclear and hydropower projects. The projects for which clearance was sought was allotted clearance by a panel of experts based on its potential impact on the environment.

It involves prospective changes suggested against the EIA notification of 2006. By embodying norms to weaken environmental norms and outright silencing the affected communities. 

This draft basically allows the various Infrastructural and Industrial bodies to go ahead with various projects and seek the approval later ( post facto clearance), which would certify the starting of various projects without proper clearance certificates, afterwards when the destruction would’ve been already done.

The point of emphasis is that the principles embodied in the draft is against the various principles that shouldn’t exist in such a democratic nation. It not only possess a grave threat to the environment but also takes away the fundamental rights of citizens to raise their voices and deliver criticism regarding such concerns.

Rather than strengthening the norms under the Act and allowing the people to participate and raise their concerns, this draft focuses on restricting the Public’s voice over such environmentally degrading projects.

It also curtails the right of the communities by legalising projects that has already caused a great deal of harm and the ones which are already existing without proper approvals under the EIA. Making potential threats of mass destruction legal.

However, the Government has commented that the proposed draft would further bring transparency and expedite the process of development. Experts in the field have commented that the only process expedited by such a drastic change would be dragging the country to the ground and crippling the powers of the common man versus huge industrial organisations.

Foreseeable accidents of Vizag Gas leak and the Baghjan Oil fire are grave examples of the gravity of destruction that can be caused by projects that are not run under proper EIA guidelines.

Sighting the present troubles already upon the citizens, the drafts brought to life should be of those which corporates building a greener and more sustainable future where the nature would be the heart of all operations.