A web portal was launched for online submission of applications for Environment Clearance by State Environment Impact Assessment Authorities for Category ‘B’ projects. The web portal has been launched across the country and nineteen states have joined it instantly. Launching the portal, the Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Prakash Javadekar said that the new portal is a “landmark” and online processes have raised the levels of transparency and accountability. Shri Javadekar also added that the online submission of applications will ensure that monitoring is carried out more effectively and on a real time basis and thus, status on the pendency is available clearly. The online submission of applications will also speed up clearance processes, while maintaining the rigours of Environment Clearance process.
Speaking on the occasion, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Ashok Lavasa said that the joining of 19 states is a significant step forward in the process of Environment Clearance. Shri Lavasa also said that with this step, Environment Clearances for Category ‘B’ projects have been put online. Now, the Ministry is targeting to bring all the clearances required and Hazardous Substances Management Rules online.
Last year, the Ministry had launched the online application system for Environmental Clearance for Category Á’ projects. While applications for Category Á’ projects come to the Ministry for approval, applications under Category ‘B’ projects do not come to the Ministry and are dealt with at the State level itself. Based on the experiences of increased transparency, expeditious disposal without compromising upon the rigour of Environment Clearance, the process has encouraged the Ministry to go in for a similar system at the State level.
An interactive session was conducted over Video Conferencing with representatives of State Environment Assessment Committees (SEACs) and State Environment Impact Assessment Authorities (SEIAA) from nine states. The nine states include Maharashtra, Gujarat, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Manipur and Punjab.
The launch of web portal today comes a day after the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, launched the Digital India Week yesterday.