In a notification dated January 27, 1994 (as subsequently amended), the Ministry of Environment & Forests has made the environmental clearance for 29 categories of developmental projects mandatory. On April 10, 1997, as per amendment No. SO 318 (E), public hearing has been made statutory for all developmental projects covered by this notification.
While reviewing the progress of cases which were accorded environmental clearance prior to the January 27, 1994 Notification, it has been observed that a large number of projects have not commenced construction or other operations. Some of the main reasons for non-commencement of projects or very slow progress are :
It has been noted that certain projects which were environmentally appraised even as early as April 1980 have not commenced construction activities. There may have been significant changes during these years which would have implications on the environment and ecology of the area. After careful consideration, the Ministry has decided that the environmental clearances issued prior to 1994 will not be valid in the case of projects where work did not commence before August 08, 1998. In all such cases, fresh environmental clearance would be required if these come in the 29 categories listed in the EIA Notification. Projects which are not listed in Schedule-I of the EIA Notification will not require environmental clearance. A fresh environmental clearance should be obtained for all those projects which fall in the category mentioned above.