Environmentalists write to MPs, urge withdrawal of EIA notification 2020

As many as 124 city environmentalists, civil activists and Mumbai’s local groups have written to all the 785 members of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha demanding immediate withdrawal of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) draft 2020.

EIA is the process of study proposed for evaluating likely environmental impact of a proposed project. It makes the scientific estimate of impacts of a projects (like irrigational dam and mine) on the environment. It's a process, where the view of people are taken into consideration before granting any final approval to any development project or activity.

The new EIA 2020 draft has been proposed with an aim of making processes more transparent and expedient.

However the draft proposes the removal of several activities from purview of public consultation, thus being a breach of the entire corrigendum.

"In the 2020 draft of EIA, a number of guidelines have been manipulated. Directives highlighting the importance of having a dialogue between the public and government have been removed. Also a number of industries have also been exempted from taking environmental clearance," social activist Lara Jesani told FPJ.

The social activists also fear, being the financial capital, there is a high chance that the ecology of Mumbai might fall prey to the industrial projects if the EIA notification is not withdrawn.

"Mumbai is a coastal city, also if the ecology is not being taken care of the city, it might get submerged by 2050. So there's a dire need to oppose the draft," stated Jesani.

"Thus we have written to all 785 MPs and try to make them understand the importance of the situation. They are the ones who have the power to oppose the draft to oppose the move in the people's house" she added.

Meanwhile on Tuesday, state minister of tourism and guardian minister of Mumbai have written to Prakash Javadekar, raising objection on the on the EIA draft.

"I have written to the Hon’ble Minister of Environment, Forests & Climate Change @PrakashJavdekar ji, where I have raised my objections on the Draft EIA notification" tweeted Aaditya.

"The notification in its present form fails to align with the Paris agreement and poses great threat to our goal of achieving sustainable growth" said the letter.

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