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‘EIA reports must precede projects’

Worried that most projects are without Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), the Lagos State Government has vowed to make EIA report a must for projects in the state. Commissioner for the Environment, Dr. Babatunde Adejare disclosed this at a Stakeholders’ Engagement on Environmental Impact Assessment for Dredging and Land Reclamation Projects in Lagos State held in Ikorodu and Eti-Osa East local councils.

Adejare, who was represented by the Director, Environmental Management, Mr. Sherif Savage, stated that EIA as a decision making tool which provide decision makers the necessary information to satisfactorily assess both the environmental and social effects of a proposed project must be prioritised.

According to him, “Environmental Impact Assessment ensures the potential Impacts of a proposed project are identified and measures for mitigation proffered before the commencement of the project”He stressed that community members must be involved in the making of EIA since it is a vital part of project implementation process.

Adejare therefore enjoined communities to have interest in any proposed project brought to their domain and demand for EIA on such projects to forestall untoward consequences. The Commissioner further debunked some misconceptions that EIA is a money making venture for government, waste of time and resources. Adejare maintained that the relevant stakeholders in environmental impact assessment process are the appropriate regulators/regulatory agencies, project host community/communities, community leaders and people affected by the project.

Also an environment consultant, Mr. Ayo Tella has described Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), as a vital part of project implementation process, thereby making EIA report a priority for execution of projects.

Speaking on the theme, “Enhancing public Participation in EIA Process”, Tella, urged the stakeholders to ensure that communities are consulted before projects are cited in their environs.

According to him, the community consultation “is a Platform to inform/ educate and create awareness amongst community members about the Project, its benefit and negative impacts.”

Originally published in The Guardian

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