Environmental assessment reform: A report on improvement in program adminstration
The Ministry of Environment and Energy (MOEE) is now in the implementation stage of environmental assessment (EA) reforms. This report sets out how the ministry will implement these reforms. In this report, you will find the following chapters: Chapter 1 explains how the ministry is processing EA documents more efficiently using a streamlined EA review process. Chapter 2 outlines the variety of methods being used to clarify instructions given in the EA process. These include new documents to define the EA planning process, to interpret the EA Act and to define the roles of various participants in the EA process. All these documents will be written using clear, understandable language. In chapter 3, the methods by which the consultation process in EA will be made more effective are identified, as are the ways in which they will be implemented. Chapter 4 discusses ways in which the class environmental assessment process will be promoted and clarified. A class EA guideline is proposed to provide clear requirements for this significant component of the EA program. The focus of chapter 5 is how more timely and effective EA Board hearings will be achieved. A variety of initiatives are proposed to reduce hearing cost and length. Chapter 6 explains how EA decisions by the Ministry of Environment and Energy will be made in a more open and accountable way and how the consideration of environmental effects will be broadened. As well, responsibilities for protecting the environment after the completion of a project will be made more clear. Chapter 7 provides a summary on how the individual EA process will be improved and chapter 8 shows how the effectiveness of EA reform will be monitored. Appendix A provides a glossary of EA terms which are used in this report and Appendix B presents a comprehensive list of the EA reform documents the ministry intends to produce.
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