[mpisgmedia] NGO/activists fourth open letter to MoEF

| rcd a while ago
| see also earlier group-letter:
http://mail.architexturez.net/pipermail/mpisgmedia/2004-September/000166.html


>
> Fourth Open Letter to the Ministry of Environment
> and Forests
>
> Issued on 8th April 2005
>
> Why are the Expert Committees of Ministry of
> Environment and Forests
> dominated by ex-bureaucrats, politicians and
> engineers?
>
>
> The seven environmental assessment expert committees
> of the Ministry of
> Environment and Forests (MoEF), which advise MoEF on
> whether to clear
> industrial and development projects, are dominated
> by, current and former
> bureaucrats, politicians and engineers. There is
> little
> ecological/environmental expertise in these
> committees, even though the
> Environment Impact Assessment Notification 1994,
> under which they have been
> constituted, clearly states that they must be
> composed of such experts.
>
> Most shockingly, of the 64 members of these
> committees (based on an analysis
> of November 2004 for six such committees):
> · There are only two wildlife experts
> (though the Notification
> requires a flora/fauna expert in each committee)
> · Nearly half the members are from
> government or government
> affiliated agencies (how independent would these
> members' decisions be if
> project proponents are mostly government
> agencies/departments?)
> · There are no representatives of
> indigenous/adivasi/local
> communities (even though the projects being
> considered mostly affect such
> communities)
> · Nearly two-thirds of the members are based
> in Delhi/Noida and
> Tamil Nadu (mostly Chennai)...is all of India's
> environmental expertise
> located only in these two places?
> · There are only three or four women
> members, one of them being a
> MoEF official.
>
> How can one expect unbiased and independent advice
> being given by such
> committees to the MoEF? The recommendations of the
> committees have deep and
> long-lasting, if not permanent, impacts on our
> ecological heritage and the
> quality of life of local communities. The current
> composition of the
> committees is a clear violation of the Notification
> in spirit and letter,
> and therefore a violation of the Environment
> Protection Act, 1986 under
> which this Notification has been issued.
>
> If the intent of the Notification is to be honoured,
> MoEF must:
> · Dissolve these committees immediately, and
> reconstitute them
> through a proper and transparent process with
> mandatory inclusion of experts
> and experienced people from various stakeholder
> groups, who are reputed in
> social and environmental fields stipulated in
> Schedule III of the EIA
> notification, and are known for their independent
> thinking and work;
> · Make the process of selection of these
> committees open and
> transparent, providing a full list of the
> expertise/experience of each
> nominated member and ensure that the committees are
> truly representative of
> the environmental expertise from different
> disciplines;
> · Make the minutes of all committee
> meetings, decisions and advice
> provided by these committees (including
> environmental and forest clearance
> letters), open to public scrutiny, to show that they
> are taken on the basis
> of sound science, information, and criteria of
> ecological sustainability and
> to make committee members accountable for the
> recommendations they give to
> the MoEF.
> · Ensure that information about site visits
> of the committee members
> is put up for public information as soon as the
> programme is final and at
> least two weeks in advance of such visits and should
> also be made public
> through notices in local newspapers so that all
> concerned can meet and
> inform the committees about their concerns. The
> reports of the site visits
> should also be available to public as soon as they
> are ready and in any case
> a week in advance of the meeting when the concerned
> projects are to be taken
> up for consideration.
> · Provide an opportunity for civil society
> organizations and
> communities and individuals likely to be effected by
> the project to directly
> interact with the expert committee members.
>
> The Environment Clearance process of the MoEF is the
> only process available
> in the country to understand environmental and
> social impacts of development
> projects/activities. This process is governed by the
> Environment Impact
> Assessment (EIA) notification under the EPA. As per
> the EIA notification the
> MoEF appoints a set of experts to help the Ministry
> decide on developmental
> projects that impact the environment. There are 32
> kind of activities
> identified in Schedule I of the EIA notification
> that need to obtain
> environmental clearance from the MoEF. As a part of
> the clearance process,
> the detailed reports of these projects are assessed
> by one of the seven
> Expert Committees (ECs) depending on which category
> they fall under:
> Industrial projects, Thermal projects, River Valley
> and Hydroelectric
> projects, Mining projects, Nuclear Projects,
> Infrastructure and
> Miscellaneous projects and New Construction Projects
> and Industrial Estates.
>
> The committees review these reports and assessments
> of the probable impacts
> that projects are likely to have on the environment
> and people and make
> recommendations to the MoEF regarding whether the
> project should be granted
> clearance and if yes under what conditions. They
> also recommend ways by
> which environmental and social impacts of the
> projects could be mitigated by
> project developers, to the maximum extent possible.
> Thus, these Committees
> play a critical role in the decisions taken
> regarding developmental projects
> and the environmental and social impacts that occur
> due to these projects.
> Their decisions have a great significance for the
> well-being of
> environmentally sensitive areas.
>
> As of today, the ECs have recommended projects such
> as the Lower Subansiri
> Hydroelectric Project, Siang Middle Siang (Siyom)
> Hydroelectric project in
> Arunachal Pradesh; Chamera III in Himachal Pradesh,
> Lohari Nag Pala and
> Tapovan Vishnugad Hydroelectric projects in
> Uttaranchal; Athirappilly
> Hydroelectric Project, Kerala for environmental
> clearance. Environmental
> clearance for projects such as Expansion of the
> Jindal Sponge Iron Plant in
> Raigarh, Chhatisgarh is in the process of being
> decided. These projects will
> cause severe social and environmental impacts and
> have also faced loud
> opposition from local communities, as they
> understand that these projects
> will affect their livelihoods and natural resources
> around them.
> However, considering the seriously flawed
> composition and constitution of
> these ECs as also their working methods, these
> decisions need to be
> reviewed.
>
> Some of the key problems are as follows (for
> detailed analysis of each
> committee, pl. see Annex).
>
> [Note: This analysis is based on the composition of
> the Expert Committees as
> in November 2004. Following this there has been a
> change in the composition
> of the committee for River Valley and Hydroelectric
> projects, and a new
> committee on New Construction Projects and
> Industrial Estates has been
> added. However, neither of these changes alters the
> overall arguments
> emerging from the current analysis. The information
> on the profile of expert
> committee members has been found from random web
> searches since they are not
> put up on the MoEF website which only carries the
> list of members who
> constitute the committees without any information
> about their qualifications
> or background. We found no information regarding the
> expertise of some
> members]
>
> 1. Inadequate Environmental and Other Stipulated
> Expertise: Schedule III of
> the notification clearly states that the Expert
> Committees are to assess
> environmental impacts. So it is clear that the
> committees need to consist of
> experts from the field of environment and closely
> related areas of concern.
> The schedule further lays down the kinds of
> expertise that must be present
> in every committee. These include Eco-system
> Management, (ii) Air/Water
> Pollution Control, (iii) Water Resource Management,
> (iv) Flora/Fauna
> conservation and management, (v) Land Use Planning,
> (vi) Social
> Sciences/Rehabilitation, (vii) Project Appraisal,
> (viii) Ecology, (ix)
> Environmental Health, (x) Subject Area Specialists.
>
> However, it is utterly shocking that none of the
> committees have the above
> composition. Note that:
> · There are only two representatives of
> relevant fields, one from
> Wildlife Institute of India and the other from
> School of Environmental
> Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, in all the
> committees put together.
> · There are no sociologists, social
> scientists, anthropology experts
> or social work professionals when the composition
> requires the presence of
> experts in the field of social
> sciences/rehabilitation. This clearly affects
> the assessment of project impacts on people,
> especially on tribal and other
> local communities, women, children and other
> marginalised groups in society.
> · Three out of six committees have
> individuals who are listed by
> their name and residential addresses only. Out of
> these three individuals
> are office bearers of the Dravida Munnetra Karagam
> (DMK), which happens to
> be the political party to which the present and
> previous Ministers of
> Environment and Forests belong.
>
> 2. Technological bias: The ECs have a maximum number
> of members who are
> engineers and have other technical qualifications in
> the field of
> engineering. In such a situation, it is likely that
> the outcomes or
> decisions on projects are loaded with technological
> perspectives to complex
> environmental problems without due consideration
> given to social and
> environmental perspectives of developmental
> projects. The Committee for
> Industrial Projects has 4 members from a chemical
> engineering background.
> However, there are no members with expertise in
> flora and fauna conservation
> and management, social sciences, ecology,
> environment and health.
>
> 3. Field of expertise of Chairperson: As per the
> Notification, the Chairman
> should "be an outstanding and experienced ecologist
> or environmentalist or
> technical professional with wide managerial
> experience in the relevant
> development sector". None of the chairpersons are
> from or closely related to
> the field of environment. All present Chairmen are
> ex-Secretaries of
> government departments or ministries. In some cases
> they have been
> secretaries of departments or ministries that are
> proposing the projects
> coming to their committee. How unbiased can the
> Committee's advice be in
> such a situation? E.g. Dr M. Chitale, who was the
> Chairman of Environmental
> Assessment committee for River Valley Projects, till
> recently served in the
> Central Water Commission and Ministry of Water
> Resources (MoWR). Many of the
> projects that came to his committee for clearance
> were envisaged by the CWC
> and supported by the MoWR.
>
> 4. Affiliations of members to agencies and
> institutions: According to the
> EIA notification the members serve on these
> committees in their individual
> capacity. This may have been decided so as to
> maintain independence in the
> functioning of the committees. However, in reality
> the affiliations of the
> members to their institutions or departments of
> service does impact the
> decision making process. 28 out of 59 members are
> from government affiliated
> institutions or agencies set up directly under
> government
> departments/ministries like Ministry of Water
> Resources and Ministry of
> Mines, who are the main project proponents in the
> area of irrigation and
> power projects and mining. It is difficult for
> committees with such a high
> percentage of members from such
> institutions/agencies to take
> critical/independent views on projects if and when
> necessary, as most of the
> projects are backed by these ministries/departments.
>
> The point goes beyond the fact of member or
> chairperson being
> bureaucrat/affiliated to the government or not.
> There is also a question of
> conflict of interests, where it is important to know
> what decisions/
> policies/programmes an EC member has been associated
> with or have
> predilections towards.
>
> A number of the institutions where many of the EC
> members are employed also
> conduct studies and assessments for the projects
> that come up for
> clearances. So EC members could be assessing the
> projects for which studies
> may have been done by their own institutions. For
> example the Numaligarh
> Refinery near Kaziranga was cleared by the Expert
> Committee in 1989-1990
> under the Chairmanship of Director, National
> Environmental Engineering
> Research Institute (NEERI) even though the NEERI had
> done the EIA for the
> project. In the present process there is no way to
> ensure that this does not
> happen.
>
> 5. Lack of representation of diverse stakeholder
> constituencies: All the
> committees comprise mostly of academics and ex- or
> serving bureaucrats.
> Even though Schedule III demands that NGOs / persons
> concerned with
> environmental issues be on the committee, there are
> only two NGOs out of 64
> members (one has an expertise in children and
> education and the other is the
> Confederation of Indian Industry). This is absurd,
> considering the number of
> environmental groups and NGOs there are to choose
> from who have been an
> integral part of environmental movement in India
> through their research,
> advocacy and direct action at the grassroot level.
> Indeed, in the earlier
> years, NGOs were well-represented; they have been
> shunted out only in the
> last 3-4 years.
> There is also absolutely no representation of local
> community members or
> groups on these committees. This is blatantly
> unjust, as most of the
> development projects on which these committees take
> decisions are proposed
> to come up in rural and tribal areas and would
> impact natural resources with
> which communities have cultural and spiritual
> connections and over which
> they have rights and privileges. This is
> particularly so for projects
> proposed in tribal areas coming under Schedules V
> and VI of the Constitution
> for protecting tribal rights and cultures. It is
> inappropriate that formal
> experts alone take decisions regarding development
> projects, when it is
> entirely possible to have the representation of
> local communities capable of
> bringing into the committee their own traditional
> knowledge and
> understanding of environment and development issues.
>
> 6. Regional bias: Most of the members of the expert
> committees are either
> from Delhi /Noida or Tamil Nadu. Out of the 64
> members, 20 are from Tamil
> Nadu (mostly Chennai) and 26 from Delhi, making up
> two-thirds of all
> members! There is very little or no representation
> from states from North,
> Central, East and North East India. Can we expect
> these experts from Delhi
> and Tamil Nadu to know of the ground situation and
> the socio-political
> realities of the region where the proposed projects
> are to be located? It is
> unlikely that this regional bias is a mere
> coincidence, given that the
> present and previous ministers for Environment and
> Forests belong to Tamil
> Nadu.
>
> 7. Faulty decision making in the committees: Expert
> committees have and
> continue to recommend projects for clearance despite
> problems in substantive
> and procedural issues. There are number of reasons
> for this:
>
> - Inadequate availability of information:
> Information available to
> ECs through Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)
> reports is inaccurate and
> inadequate in most cases. A number of EIAs scanned
> by several NGOs and
> independent experts have revealed that aspects on
> biodiversity, livelihoods
> and dependence on natural resources and social
> aspects are very cursorily
> dealt with. NGOs have also brought to light the
> fraudulent practices of
> consultancy groups as in the case of the
> plagiarizing of the EIA report by
> the well-known consultancy group, Ernst and Young.
>
> - Shortage of assessment time: ECs are
> under immense pressure to
> give a quick response on projects so that projects
> and investments are not
> delayed. Such pressure results in cutting corners in
> the process of
> investigations, site visits and detailed analysis of
> project reports. Any
> time required to conduct extra studies demanded by
> ECs is construed as
> delaying the project.
>
> - No consultations with local communities:
> The EIA notification
> provides scope for the committee members to
> undertake site visits. But
> often, the only people met during these visits are
> the project proponents.
> Expert Committee members thus have the opinions and
> positions only of the
> project proponents and consultants and not of local
> community members, NGOs
> and other stake holders.
>
> 8. No guidelines on what should be minimum
> qualification (educational or
> experiential) of an expert: It is not clear from
> the list of committee
> members and their designations available on the MoEF
> website as to what
> their expertise is. A detailed web search with their
> names drew a blank for
> some of the EC members. It is not known whether the
> MoEF has a laid out
> process to identify experts in various fields
> including environment. The
> present composition of ECs is demonstrative of the
> lack of a sound process
> of selecting experts to be on these committees.
>
> 9. Conditions for dissolution of committee: The
> conditions for the
> dissolution of the committee are not clear. In 1995,
> the EC for river valley
> projects was abruptly terminated before its
> mandatory two-year term. It is
> not a matter of chance that this step was taken, as
> the EC had taken a
> radical decision to not grant clearance to any more
> projects in states where
> past projects were not complying with mandatory
> conditions. If terms and
> conditions are not laid down, then committees can be
> dissolved as and when
> they seem inconvenient to the MoEF.
>
> 10. No committee for nuclear projects: The website
> of the MoEF indicates
> that there is to be a committee to assess nuclear
> projects. This committee
> has not been constituted and no members have been
> listed as per the
> information on the website. As it appears, nuclear
> power and related
> projects listed in Schedule I of the EIA
> notification are being granted
> environmental clearance without the MoEF seeking
> 'expert advice'. For
> example Environmental Clearance for the 500 MW
> Prototype Fast Breeder
> Reactor at Kalpakkam in Tamil Nadu was granted
> clearance despite stiff
> opposition at the public hearing and detailed
> critiques of the EIA report.
> The MoEF website also has no entry for nuclear
> plants in both pending and
> approved clearances sections.
>
> 11. Lack of representation of women or gender
> sensitivity: Among the 64
> members of all the committees there are only three
> or four women members,
> one amongst them being an MoEF official acting as
> member-secretary of the
> committee for mining projects. Further, it appears
> that there is no gender
> expert on any of the committees. This is despite the
> fact that an advisory
> committee constituted by MoEF itself for enhancing
> women's participation in
> forestry had strongly recommended that gender
> balance must be ensured in all
> committees set up by MoEF. The ECs need to be
> sensitive to the highly
> disproportionate negative impact displacement,
> pollution and other
> dislocation caused by 'development' projects has on
> women. Impacts, such as
> the entry of outside construction labour/contractors
> in an area seriously
> impeding women's mobility and personal security
> while undertaking their
> daily tasks or their loss of access to common
> grazing lands and forests for
> meeting essential livelihood needs also need to be
> taken into account. Most
> EIAs have hardly any analysis of this aspect.
> Therefore, it rarely forms the
> basis on whether clearance should be granted.
>
> 12. Lack of recognition of the legal and
> constitutional protection for
> tribal rights and cultures: Given that many mining,
> hydro and industrial
> projects are located in Schedule V and VI areas
> providing special protection
> to tribal resource rights and alienation of their
> lands to non-tribals, it
> is remarkable that the ECs have no members
> responsible for ensuring that the
> legal and constitutional provisions for safeguarding
> tribal rights and
> cultures are not violated by the environmental
> clearances that they grant.
>
> Conclusion and Demands
>
> All the above points together present serious and
> unacceptable flaws in the
> composition, functioning, and decision making of the
> current Expert
> Committees of the MoEF. We believe that the current
> Expert Committees of the
> MoEF are simply not qualified or fit to carry out
> the task assigned to them
> under the EIA Notification. They are inadequate in
> the expertise they
> contain to understand the social and environmental
> impacts of proposed
> projects. Further, they are also toothless bodies
> that recommend project
> clearance no matter how blatantly false the
> information provided by the
> project authority, or no matter how high the
> environmental damage to be
> caused. This is despite the stern warnings against
> any misleading claims or
> falsification of data contained in clause 4 in the
> EIA notification, which
> states.
> "Concealing factual data or submission of false,
> misleading data/reports,
> decisions or recommendations would lead to the
> project being rejected.
> Approval, if granted earlier on the basis of false
> data, would also be
> revoked. Misleading and wrong information will cover
> the following:
> ·False information
> ·False data
> ·Engineered reports
> ·Concealing of factual data
> ·False recommendations or decisions"
>
> We urge the MoEF to:
>
> · Dissolve these committees, and
> reconstitute them with experts and
> experienced people from various stakeholder groups,
> who are reputed in
> environmental and socio-economic fields, and are
> known for their integrity,
> independent thinking and work;
> · Make the process of selection of these
> committees open and
> transparent, providing a full list of the
> expertise/experience of each
> nominated member;
> · Make the minutes of all committee
> meetings, decisions (including
> environment and forest clearance letters) and advice
> provided by these
> committees, open to public scrutiny, so that it is
> known whether the
> recommendations are made on the basis of sound
> science, information, and
> criteria of ecological and socio-economic
> sustainability and to make
> committee members accountable for the
> recommendations they give to the MoEF.
> · The agenda notes of the meetings should be
> made public at least a
> week before the meeting and the minutes should be
> made public within a week
> of the meeting. All such agenda notes and meetings
> should remain on the MoEF
> website at least for five years.
> · There should be a system built into the
> environmental clearance
> process whereby representatives of concerned
> communities and individuals and
> civil society organizations make presentations and
> directly discuss
> grievances with the expert committees, if they wish
> to do so.
>
> Kanchi Kohli/Ashish Kothari (Kalpavriksh)
> 134, Tower 10, Supreme Enclave, Mayur Vihar Phase 1,
> Delhi-110091
> Ph: 011- 22753714(o), 29221379 (r); Email:
> [email protected];
> [email protected]
>
> Ravi Agarwal (Toxics Link)
> H2 Jangpura Extension, New Delhi - 110014
> Tel: 011-24321747, 24328006; Fax: 24321747; Email:
> [email protected]
>
> Shekhar Singh (National Campaign for People's Right
> to Information)
> C 17A Munirka, New Delhi - 110067
> Tel: 011 - 26178048; Email: [email protected]
>
> With
> Latha A, Chalakudy River Samrakshana Samiti, Kerala
> Ramesh Agarwal, Lok Shakti Samiti, Raipur,
> Chhatisgarh
> Harry Andrews, Harry V. Andrews. Madras Crocodile
> Bank Trust,/ Centre for
> Herpetology, Chennai
> Bamang Anthony Arunachal Citizens Right (ACR),
> Arunachal Pradesh
> A. Giridhar, Babu, Deccan Development Society,
> Andhra Pradesh
> Seema Bhatt, Biodiversity Consultant, New Delhi
> Rita Boro, Indigenous Women's Leadership, NE India,
> Assam
> Jayshri, C, Andhra Pradesh Coalition in Defence of
> Diversity, Andhra Pradesh
> Udayashankar C, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh
> Geevan C.P., Centre for Environment & Social
> Concerns, Ahmedabad
> Rattan Chand, Himalay Bachao Samiti, Chamba,
> Himachal Pradesh
> Girin Chetia, NEADS, Assam
> Rajnibhai Dave, Manaviya Technology Forum, Gujarat
> Sukhendu Debbarma, Indigenous/TribalPeoples
> Development Centre, Tripura
> Swati Desai, Mozda Collective, Gujarat
> Arun Mani Dixit, Gujarat Institute of Desert
> Ecology, Bhuj, Kutch.
> Madhumita Dutta, Corporate Accountability Desk, The
> Other Media, New Delhi
> Dino Dympep, Meghalaya Peoples' Human Rights
> Council, Meghalaya
> Ashish Fernandes, Ecologist Asia, Mumbai
> Dilip Gode, Vidarbha Nature Conservation Society,
> Nagpur, Maharashtra
> Monoj Gogoi, People's Movement for Subansiri Valley
> (PMSV), Assam
> Kalpana Hazarika, Subansiri Sanrakha Nari Sanstha,
> Assam
> Pandurang Hegde, Appiko/Prakruti, Sirsi, Karnataka
> Joseph Hmar, Citizen's Concern for Dams and
> Development, Imphal, Manipur
> Ramaswamy Iyer, Former Secretary, Ministry of Water
> Resources, New Delhi
> Bharath Jairaj, Citizen, Consumer and Action Group,
> Chennai
> Nityanand Jayaraman, Independent Researcher and
> journalist, Chennai
> Durgesh Kasbekar, Independent Researcher, Canada
> Tado Karlo, NEFA Indigenous Human Rights
> Organisation (NIHRO), Arunachal
> Pradesh
> Reli Kena, Dolok Bango Indigenious Peoples' Forum
> Madhu Kishwar, MANUSHI, Delhi
> Smitu Kothari, Lokayan, New Delhi
> Roy Laifungbam, Co-coordinator, South Asian
> Solidarity for Rivers and
> Peoples (SARP), India Secretariat, Assam
> Souparna Lahiri, Delhi Forum, Delhi
> Sharad Lele, Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in
> Environment &
> Development, Bangalore
> Syed Liyakhat, EQUATIONS, Bangalore.
> Anand Mazgaonkar & Rohit Prajapati, Paryavaran
> Suraksha Samiti, Gujarat
> Kisan Mehta, Save Bombay Committee, Mumbai
> Biswajit Mohanty, Wildlife Society of Orissa, Orissa
> Mahesh Pandya, Centre for Social Justice, Ahmedabad,
> Gujarat
> Anna Pinto, CORE, Imphal, Manipur
> Satheesh P.V., South Asia Network on Food Ecology
> and Culture (SANFEC) -
> India
> Angela Ralte (HR&LN) Mizoram
> Sreedhar Ramamurthy, mines, minerals and People/
> Academy of Mountain
> Environics, Dehradun, Uttaranchal
> Capt. J.Rama Rao, Movement Against Uranium Projects,
> Hyderabad, Andhra
> Pradesh
> Kishor Rithe, Nature Conservation Society, Amravati,
> Maharashtra
> Bittu Sahgal, Sanctuary Magazine, Mumbai
> Arup Saikia, Brahmaputra Barak Rivers Watch (BBW),
> Assam
> Rajesh Salam, Manipur Nature Society, Imphal,
> Manipur
> Madhu Sarin, Independent consultant, Chandigarh
> Rahul Saxena, Rural Technology and Development
> Centre/Lok Vigyan Kendra,
> Palampur, Himachal Pradesh
> Jai Sen, Critical Action / Centre in Movement, Delhi
> Indu Prakash Singh, National Forum for Housing
> Rights, New Delhi
> Neera Singh, Vasundhara, Bhubaneshwar, Orissa
> Subrata Sinha, former Dy. Director General,
> Geological Survey of India,
> Kolkata
> Aarthi Sridhar, Research Fellow, Ashoka Trust for
> Research in Ecology and
> the Environment, Bangalore
> Himanshu Thakkar, South Asia Network on Dams, Rivers
> & People, Delhi.
> David Thangliana, Centre for Environmental
> Protection, Mizoram
> Kulbhushan Upmanyu, Navrachna, Palampur, Himachal
> Pradesh.
> Vimal, Matu Peoples' Organisation, Delhi
> Ramananda Wangkheirakpam, Intercultural Resources,
> Delhi
> Jiten Yumnam, Indigenous Perspectives, Imphal,
> Manipur
> A.C.Zonunmawia, Centre for Environment Protection
> (CEP), Aizwal
>
> Annexure 1
>
>
> How Balanced are the Expert Committees in their
> Composition?
>
> [Note: Each Expert Committee has varying number of
> members. There is one
> Chairman and one Member Secretary, who is an MoEF
> official]
>
> Industrial Projects: Twelve Members in all. Other
> than the Chairman and
> Member Secretary, four members have a Chemical
> Engineering background, one
> from Central Pollution Control Board (government
> affiliated), one MLA, one
> DMK state official, and one whose expertise is not
> known. There is no person
> with expertise in flora and fauna conservation and
> management, social
> sciences, gender, tribal development, ecology,
> environment, health and no
> representatives from NGOs or environmentally
> concerned citizens
>
> Mining Projects: Thirteen members in all. Apart from
> the Chairman and Member
> Secretary, one representative from the Indian Bureau
> of Mines, one from a
> Public Sector company that deals with copper, three
> people whose expertise
> did not appear through web searches. There are also
> representatives from
> other government bodies like India Meteorology
> Department and Central Ground
> Water Authority. There is once again no person with
> social science, tribal
> or gender expertise and representation of NGOs or
> environmentally concerned
> citizens.
>
> Thermal Projects: Thirteen members in all. Apart
> from the Chairman and
> Member Secretary, one person from the Central
> Pollution Control Board, one
> Chemical Engineer from IIT, one representative from
> the Confederation of
> Indian Industry and one from the Coal Ministry. One
> member is member of the
> DMK political party whose expertise does not fit the
> subject of the
> committee. There is one person with expertise in
> flora and fauna
> conservation and management, social sciences,
> ecology, and no
> representatives from NGOs or environmentally
> concerned citizens.
>
> River Valley and Hydro Electric Projects: Fourteen
> members in all. Apart
> from Chairman and Member Secretary, two members are
> representatives from
> other central government ministries, i.e. Department
> of Land Resources and
> Ministry of Water Resources. There is one
> representative from the DMK
> political party. There are two representatives from
> government-affiliated
> institutions. The expertise of four members was not
> available on the web.
> There is no person with expertise in flora and fauna
> conservation and
> management, social sciences and no representatives
> from NGOs or
> environmentally concerned citizens
>
> Infrastructure and Miscellaneous Projects: Twelve
> members in all. It is this
> committee that looks at projects under the Coastal
> regulation Zone as well.
> It might be a coincidence that many infrastructure
> projects mooted by
> Tamilnadu are referred to this committee before
> clearance. Nevertheless
> there are seven representatives from Chennai, one
> from West Bengal and one
> from Andaman and Nicobar Islands. There is one
> member whose expertise was
> not available on the web. This is apart from the
> Chairman and Member
> Secretary. There is no person with expertise in
> flora and fauna conservation
> and management, social sciences, ecology,
> environment, health and no
> representatives from NGOs or environmentally
> concerned citizens
>
> [This is based on the list available on the MoEF
> website in November 2004]
>
> Annexure 2:
> Geographical Location Regional Representation in the
> Expert Committees
>
> S.No. Committee Number of Members Geographical
> Location
> South North West Central& East North East
> 1.Industrial Projects 12 7 4 1 0 0
> 2.Mining Projects 13 3 7 2 1 0
> 3.Thermal Projects 13 4 9 0 0 0
> 4.River Valley &HE Projects 14 3 8 2 1 0
> 5.Infrastructure and Misc. Projects 12 8 3 0 1 0
> Total 64 25 31 5 3 0
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>


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