Wednesday, March 7, 2012

CAFTA-DR Regional EIA Technical Review Guidelines and Example Terms of Reference -- INECE

CAFTA-DR Regional EIA Technical Review Guidelines and Example Terms of Reference offered by the International Network for Environmental Compliance and Enforcement.  From the INECE webpage:

"Three regional EIA Technical Review Guidelines for the review and preparation of EIAs for energy mining and tourism projects were prepared by relevant experts from Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the United States in both EIA and the mining, energy and tourism sectors respectively, supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Environment and Labor Excellence Program and the Central American Commission on Environment and Development, through a regional collaborative process coordinated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The Guidelines are an outgrowth of environmental cooperation between the governments of five Central American Countries, the Dominican Republic and the United States associated with the CAFTA-DR free trade agreement. The guidelines are a product of regional experts in EIA and the relevant sectors, drawing upon existing materials from within and outside these countries and from international organizations and do not represent the policies, practices or requirements of any one country or organization.

The Guidelines were developed to better ensure proposed projects undergoing review by government officials, NGOs, and the general public successfully identify, avoid, prevent and/or mitigate potential adverse impacts and enhance potential beneficial impacts throughout the life of the projects. From the vantage point of enforcement, the guidelines emphasize auditable commitment language, monitoring and follow up, as well as compliance with EIA procedures and existing environmental performance requirements which are benchmarked in Appendix C for many different countries and international organizations.

Volume 1 contains the guidelines which track with internationally recognized elements of environmental impact assessment with a glossary and references; Volume 2 contains Appendices with detailed information on the applicable sector, requirements and standards, predictive tools, and international codes; and Volume 1, Part 2 contains example Terms of Reference cross-linked to Volumes 1 and 2 for different types of mining, energy, and/or tourism projects respectively for use by the countries as they prepare their own EIA program requirements."

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