• It is the spirit and not the form of law that keeps justice alive.
    Earl Warren

THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT ASSESSMENT REGULATION

Similar to the regulation preceding it, the New Regulation governs the administrative and technical procedures/principles related to the environmental impact assessment process (“EIA”) carried out in order to determine the positive and negative impacts of a given project to the environment. Under the New Regulation, same as the abolished one, projects listed in Annex 1 are automatically required to submit an EIA application file and an EIA report, while others, listed in Annex 2, may be subject to EIA if they are located in “sensitive areas” or if their review reveals potentially significant impacts. The New Regulation has amended the projects listed in Annex 1 and Annex 2 and accordingly, a number of construction projects including shopping malls (equal to or over 50,000m² with closed car parks), residential complexes (over 500 units), and golf courses are classified under Annex 2. Due to the new categorization, these projects are exempt from the requirement to automatically prepare an EIA application file and an EIA report and will be subject to a selection and elimination criteria and submit a project presentation file instead. Small-size hydro-electric plants with installed capacity of 1-10 MWm are now listed under Annex 2 while the previous regulation had a different threshold for such plants (1-25 MWm). Additionally, the New Regulation characterizes wind plants and solar plants listed in Annex 1 based on installed capacity, instead of number of turbines and coverage area set forth in the older regulation.
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