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Practice and performance of environmental impact assessment in Bangladesh : an ex-post evaluation of Meghnaghat power plant project
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Sm Zobaidul KabirSm Zobaidul Kabir
EIA (environmental impact assessment) was formally introduced in Bangladesh in 1995 to assess and manage the potential impacts of development projects. As an environmental management tool, the performance of EIA does not end up with the preparation of a good EIA report only. The proponent is required to address the potential impacts during the implementation of the project. While there is ample research on ex-ante evaluation of EIA performance, ex-post review of EIA performance is largely absent in Bangladesh. This research aims to fill this gap. Using a case study method, this empirical research indicates that the performance of EIA at the post-EIS stage is not satisfactory. Deficiencies include inadequate implementation of mitigation measures, inadequate monitoring and community participation. Also, the attitude of project proponents towards environmental issues and the role of environmental agency influence the implementation of mitigation measures. This paper suggests that the performance of EIA in Bangladesh can be improved by adequate participation of the community, a strong commitment by the proponent, and adequate oversight by the environmental agency and donor agencies. The findings of this paper will be useful to academics, policy makers and development practitioners in Bangladesh and elsewhere.