The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) wants the government to offer a single-window environmental clearance for all projects, to fast-track this procedure. “Consolidate all green clearances – environment, forest, coastal and wildlife – so that decisions can be taken understanding the overall impact of projects,” stated the Delhi-based organisation in its Environment and Development Agenda released here on Wednesday, on the eve of World Environment Day on June 5. The body insisted that instead of several regulators, the government should opt for an independent body to grant these clearances. At present, any project wanting the approval of the Union ministry of environment and forest and Climate Change has to knock on the doors of various authorities constituted by the government, making it a lengthy process. Every project has to go through clearance under the Environment Protection Act, 1986.
Then, depending upon the area the project falls under, it has to go through either coastal or forest or wildlife clearance, each of which has separate set of rules to give clearances. After this, consent to operate under the Air Act and the Water Act is required from the State Pollution Control Board.