Furthering Environmental Impact Assessment
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Furthering Environmental Impact Assessment

Towards a Seamless Connection between EIA and EMS

Edited by Anastássios Perdicoúlis, Bridget Durning and Lisa Palframan

The environmental impact of development projects is currently studied and mitigated from two distinct perspectives: before and after project implementation, with environmental impact assessment (EIA) and environmental management systems (EMS) being the main instruments on the respective sides. This double perspective creates a discontinuity in the way environmental impacts are analysed, an issue that has been noted by both academics and practitioners. This book gathers and presents both theoretical and actual examples to link EIA with EMS and explores ways to overcome difficulties and provide innovative solutions.
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Epilogue

Extract

Epilogue The intent of the book is to collect, present, and critically analyse the effective management of environmental (and other types of) impacts throughout the life of projects – as much in an analytic or theoretical way, as through practice. This effort comes to strengthen the relatively slow evolution of the core idea. The way forward may still have to be discovered, as there are many options worth exploring. As in most innovative work, paving the way forward needs hard work and special qualities. Before anything else, it needs good preparation, which points to studying across the fields – in this case, at least EIA and EMS. It also needs good and brave ideas, which points towards creativity and the confidence to support any ‘unusual’ hypotheses. More experimentation is also necessary, similar to the ways described here, or perhaps exploring complementary patterns and issues. And, finally, paving the way forward also needs effective communication and dissemination, which points to networking and publications. The panorama of the impact continuum appears to have an interesting combination of traits regarding human resources. For a start, there is the classic duel between academics and practitioners – as should be expected. Then there is a special separation: that of the EIA camp versus the EMS camp, which appears to traverse training and practice: each project involves further but related groups of staff within different stages of the project life cycle – for example, those involved in project planning and those who operate the project once constructed. And then...

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