environmental impact assessment (EIA)

  

Definition

Detailed study based on environmental assessment (EA) to determine the type and level of effects an existing facility is having, or a proposed project would have, on its natural environment. Its objectives include (1) to help decide if the effects are acceptable or have to be reduced for continuation of the facility or proceeding with the proposed project, (2) to design/implement appropriate monitoring, mitigation, and management measures, (3) propose acceptable alternatives, and (4) to prepare an environmental impact report (EIR). The adequacy of an EIA is based on the extent to which the environmental impacts can be identified, evaluated, and mitigated. An EIA is a standard requirement where international agencies (such as World Bank) are involved, and is critically important for projects requiring a major change in land use or those which are to be located in environmentally sensitive areas.

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