Regional Guidelines on Public Participation in Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)

Draft for Consultation and Comment
Version 22 August 2016

11.2 Level of public participation expected

  1. In many projects, the project proponent will want the local community to have a sense of ownership in the project and to be invested in its success. The specific level of potential public participation in monitoring a given project will depend on what is appropriate for the particular project circumstances, and may range from ensuring the public is informed, through establishing independent monitoring arrangements that citizens can access (Inform and Consult Levels), to collaborative project monitoring councils that are overseen jointly by project officials and community representatives (Involve and Collaborate Levels). The public can report on any environmental incidents, pollution violations, etc. to relevant authorities through established grievance redress mechanisms.
  1. For larger projects that could have significant impacts, including those with long construction periods (months or years), some sort of formal Community Consultation Committee should meet on a regular basis. The PAP should be well represented in such a Community Consultation Committee and the PAP should be allowed to choose their own representatives. CSOs should also be represented. The project proponent should also be represented, to allow comments and complaints to be dealt with quickly. As with all aspects of an EMMP, any such mechanisms should be properly budgeted. A Community Consultation Committee should involve and collaborate (and maybe even empower) the PAP and stakeholders so that problems and issues are dealt with quickly and efficiently.
  1. While enforcement actions are decisions of the relevant government ministries, the PAP and other stakeholders must have clear access to complaint mechanisms. Such complaint mechanisms must be independent and free from reprisal.
  1. Prior to Construction

    The project proponent should maintain the Public Participation Plan during the pre-construction and construction phases. The project proponent and any construction contractors should arrange a meeting with the PAP before any construction works begin on site. This meeting should provide the details of the proposed construction schedule and any relevant information (e.g. site specific EMMP and Public Participation Plan). Details should be provided on issues like the number of trucks and construction vehicles, the number of works, the hours of construction, how long the construction period will last, and the possible impacts to the PAP.

  1. Construction

    The project proponent should implement the detailed Public Participation Plan during the construction phase. This should provide details of any mechanisms for liaising with the local community (such as a Community Consultation Committee) and for grievance redress.

  1. Operation

    The operational phase will last the life of the project and shall have its own EMMP. This EMMP will include the details for the management of the environmental and social impacts of the project during normal operations. During the operational phase, regular monitoring will be required of any pollutants and waste produced by the project’s operation. This could be air pollution, noise pollution, visual pollution, or water pollution. The waste could be recyclable waste, general garbage, or even toxic or hazardous waste.

  1. Decommissioning and Rehabilitation

    The decommissioning phase of a project generally involves deconstruction, waste disposal and site rehabilitation. Depending on the nature of the project, this may require a dedicated EMMP. Public participation during this phase should also involve opportunities for the PAP and other stakeholders to contribute to plans for the rehabilitation and future of the site.