OPEARs webinar 2 question by Kate Flood

Should consideration of ES become mandatory when doing Environmental Impact Assessments?


Ilse Gejzendorffer: The short answer is yes. The question is only who makes it obligatory to do this, by whom. So for instance the World Bank has been really good at trying to mature its Environmental Impact Assessment and its relevance and credibility for biodiversity is really improving. So yes if they could include an ecosystem services approach which would also help them to connect better to the impacts on local actors then I think that would definitely be a great leap forward. The problem is the World Bank is not the only player in financing dams around the globe and other financial institutions may have less restrictive environmental impact assessments. So if we are talking from a European perspective then, maybe yes. I think if in any case you can include better linkages between social and ecological aspects, then this can only go forward. But I’m always a bit hesitant in saying who has to say who that it has to be included. I prefer that, if possible, especially private and financial sectors, themselves increasingly acknowledge the benefit of sustainable development and act accordingly, rather than making things obligatory and having to set up a whole set of governance rules and top down administrative structures. 

Posted on: 22 Sep 2017 - 17:36