500 academics, scientists wrote to environment ministry to withdraw draft EIA notification

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New Delhi: Over 500 academics, scientists and researchers from various educational institutions across the country have urged the Ministry of Environment to withdraw the controversial draft EIA notification and strengthen the existing EIA 2006 notification with a new proposal.
Since the notification was released in March, the ministry has received suggestions through about 17 lakh e-mails, including several objections.
In yet another letter, the signatories of 130 institutions listed their concerns about the draft Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) notification, which has been beset by controversies since its release, and the withdrawal of it from the ministry. Said because it can adversely affect the environment. Dilute the extraction process.
Institutions and universities that have written to the ministry include the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), the National Center for Biological Sciences (NCBS) and the Wild Institute. Huh. Of India (WII)
The controversial notification has drawn strong criticism and protests from students, citizens, activists, environmentalists across the country for “abolishing environmental safeguards to promote ease of doing business”.
“This cross-institutional collaboration initiated by PhD students from various institutions was supported by 105 faculties, former faculties and senior scientists, as well as more than 400 PhD scholars, post-doctoral research fellows, independent researchers and other research students, Those who have all signed the letter in their personal capacities, ”a press note issued by the signatories stated.
The letter stated that the validity of ex post facto environmental clearance is a significant dilution of the EIA process.
It also expresses concern over the reclassification of many highly polluting industries and projects, so as to completely exempt from proper environmental assessment.
This calls for an improved and inclusive public consultation processes in environmental decision making and effective post-clearance monitoring mechanisms.
“While much noise is made about iconic species such as tigers, turtles and elephants and even resentment about individual animals, the truth is that in large-scale development projects of large scale, Biodiversity has the greatest negative impact on ecosystems and people.
Karthik Shankar, Associate Professor at IISc, Bengaluru, who is one of the signatories to the letter, said, “This notification opens the door to projects that can severely impact the environment and still provide for the people.” The real benefits are few. ” .
IIT-Bombay PhD scholar Ayaz Ahmed said, “The EIA process is supposed to regulate polluting industries and other development projects and reduce their impact on the environment. But instead, the draft proposes reducing environmental regulations Is. Strong environmental regulations. ”
The EIA notification was issued by the Ministry on 23 March with public views and suggestions till 23 August.

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