An (EIA) is an assessment of the possible impact–positive or negative–that a proposed project may have on the natural environment. The purpose of the assessment is to ensure that decision makers consider environmental impacts used to decided whether to proceed with the project. The International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA) defines an environmental impact assessment as “the process of identifying, predicting, evaluating and mitigating the biophysical, social, and other relevant effects of development proposals prior to major decisions being taken and commitments made. After an EIA, the precautionary and polluter pays principles may be applied to prevent, limit, or require strict liability or insurance coverage to a project, based on its likely harms.
The Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism has in terms of section 24(5), read with section 44 of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No.1 07 of 1998) (“the Act`), made the Environmental Impact Assessment Regulations, 2006, published in Government Notice No. R. 385 of 21 April 2006. The Minister has furthermore, published, in Government Notice No. R. 387 of 21 April 2006, a list of activities identified in terms of section 24(2)(a) and (d) of the Act, which may not commence without environmental authorisation from the competent authority and in respect of which the investigation, assessment and communication of potential impact of activities must follow the procedure as described in regulations 27 to 36 of the Environmental Impact Assessment Regulations, 2006, promulgated in terms of section 24(5) of the Act.
Example of completed projects
- The Skychrome project inlcuded a full EIA.
- EIA for the Tiegerpoort subdivision