Shortcomings in Institutional Frameworks
Existing institutional frameworks for environmental planning and management do work. Their present form reflects their historical development, and they evolve continually. Changes needed now are incremental rather than fundamental.
Current institutional shortcomings include: inconsistencies between countries and states; intervention in EIA by other government sectors; inadequate integration between environmental planning, including EIA, and ongoing environmental management, including monitoring and pollution control; inadequate mechanisms for enforcing environmental regulations; poor mechanisms for incorporating science in EIA; inadequate testing of impact predictions; inadequate audit of environmental management processes; no generally accessible repository of information on previous impact predictions; limited formal public involvement in EIA processes; inadequate frameworks for regional environmental planning; inadequate frameworks for integrating economic and non-economic considerations in development planning; and the lack of a coherent framework for environmental planning and management in overseas aid and trade.
Electoral concern over environmental issues is producing pressure for rapid change, and most of the above shortcomings are currently being addressed. Critical to the success of these initiatives, however, will be the ability of government agencies in different areas and sectors to cooperate rather than compete.
As a kind of case study, this chapter also includes an essay on a recurring institutional problem which may be described as “humungous development syndrome”.
KeywordsInstitutional Framework Environmental Impact Assessment Environmental Impact Assessment Environmental Legislation Environmental Audit
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