The Law of Ukraine “On Environmental Impact Assessment” entered into force
On May 23, 2017, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the Law on Environmental Impact Assessment, which enters into force on December 18, 2017.
This law prescribes the basic organizational and legal principles of environmental impact assessment of planned activities. Planned activity of an entity means planned activity for construction, expansion, reconstruction, re-equipment or dismantling (liquidation) of an enterprise or other intervention in the natural environment, taking into account the possible negative impact on the environment. That is, in other words, the environmental impact assessment is carried out before the decision to carry out planned activities by the entities through submitting to the authorized local authority a written letter with the intention to carry out planned activities. Environmental impacts from planned activities mean the impact of economic activities on human health, the state of flora, fauna, air, soil, water resources, landscape and historical and architectural monuments.
The question is, does this apply to absolutely all business entities in our country? According to Article 3 of the Law of Ukraine “On Environmental Impact Assessment”, the scope of the law extends to economic entities of the first and second categories, which can have a significant negative impact on the environment.
The first category includes: gas and oil refining complexes; thermal power plants (with a capacity of more than 50 megawatts) and nuclear power plants, nuclear reactors; non-ferrous and ferrous metallurgy enterprises; enterprises of the chemical industry (biological-chemical, pharmaceutical, biotechnical production, production of mineral fertilizers, varnishes, paints, polymeric materials and other substances); handling of hazardous, household and other wastes (their storage, processing, utilization); construction of airfields, highways, railways, river ports; groundwater abstraction; oil and gas production from the continental shelf; quarry construction and mining; enterprises for the production of asbestos and asbestos-containing materials; wastewater treatment facilities; gradual and sanitary felling of forest and reserve funds, respectively; construction of transmission lines.
The second category of economic activities of environmental impact assessment includes: forestry and agricultural enterprises; deep drilling for the disposal of radioactive waste or for water supply; enterprises for processing of mineral raw materials, production and processing of metal; enterprises of food, textile, paper, leather and wood-processing industries; infrastructure projects (construction of tram tracks, pipelines, hydraulic structures, subway lines).
In accordance with the requirements of current environmental legislation, if during the implementation of the activities or project design, the entity may negatively effect on the environment, it must inform residents on the possible impact to the environment from its planned or already carried out activities. The residents can be informed by printing announcement in the media via the Internet resources of the local authority in the Unified Register of Environmental Impact Assessment. If residents have objections or suggestions regarding the environmental impact of the planned activities, they can express them in the manner prescribed by law through public hearings. The environmental impact assessment report and all information related to the planned activities should be freely available to the local people.
To conduct an environmental impact assessment, the entity must send a notification of planned activities to the local authority, which is responsible to review the information provided and making proposals for possible environmental impact, and, of course, providing an opinion on environmental impact assessment. The entity drafts a report on the environmental impact, considering feedback, comments and suggestions from the residents and the local authority.
MCL specialists will help you with environmental impact assessment, preparation of all necessary documentation, development of alternatives for the implementation of planned activities in conditions of high risks and threats to the environment.