Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a process used to assess the probable positive and negative environmental, health and social impacts of a proposed project. The process provides regulatory agencies such as Federal Ministry of Environment and National Environmental Standards Regulatory and Enforcement Agency (NESREA) with information to determine a projects’ final permit status.
Below are set guidelines and procedures contractors in Nigeria who need an EIA certificate should follow;
- Project proponent should submit evidence of payment to Federal Ministry of Environment, Environmental Assessment Department and collect project registration/notification form
- Proponent should return completed EIA registration form with EIA Terms of Reference (ToR) and comprehensive project proposal for the proposed project to the Ministry
INITIAL ENVIRONMENTAL EXAMINATION (IEE)
- Site verification of the proposed project location is conducted by the Ministry with the proponent and their Consultant (where applicable), in attendance
- Scoping of the project is done. This is the process of determining the most critical issues to study in the course of the EIA. With the host community involved to some extent, the project is categorized and a decision is made on whether or not a full EIA is to be carried out.
- EIA screening of the project scope and ToR, alongside the report of the site verification for the EIA categorization
EVALUATION AND ANALYSIS
- The EIA study is carried out, including baseline environmental data gathering and laboratory analysis of collected samples witnessed by the Ministry for two seasons
- Submission of hard copies (depending on magnitude & category) and electronic copy of the draft EIA report to the Ministry
- The draft EIA report is then displayed for public review and participation, depending on EIA which category the report is classified
- The draft EIA report is reviewed by independent Panel of Experts with relevant regulators
- The approval or disapproval of the EIA of the product by the Ministry is based on the recommendations of the independent panel of experts
- If the draft report is approved, the final EIA report is produced by the proponent
- Submission and approval of the final EIA report for issuance of EIA certificate and Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
- Impact Mitigation Monitoring (IMM) is carried out on the project by the Ministry in collaboration with State Ministries of Environment and Local Governments to ensure the implementation of:
Ø Conditions of approval
Ø Implementation of mitigation measure
Ø Environmental Management Plan (EMP)
- At the commissioning of the project, IMM is closed out for Environmental Compliance Monitoring (ECM)
- Publication of the EIS of the project in national dailies
- Environmental Audit of the project is conducted and reviewed every three years during the project operational life cycle
- This is carried out either prematurely due to unforeseen circumstances or at the end of the project life cycle – which by Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) standards is 25 years.
There is no timeline for carrying out an EIA.
Project proponents are required to pay a registration fee of N50,000, payable to Federal Ministry of Environment, Environmental Assessment Department in TSA (www.remita.net)