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  • Delays, stoppages and appeals: An empirical evaluation of the adverse impacts of environmental citizen suits in the New South Wales land and environment court
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2018-01-10
    Andrew Macintosh, Phillip Gibbons, Judith Jones, Amy Constable, Deb Wilkinson

    Environmental impact assessment (EIA) promotes considered and participatory decision-making, which can delay development and, at times, lead to projects being temporarily halted or permanently discontinued. Over the past decade, governments in a number of jurisdictions have proposed ‘streamlining’ reforms to eliminate perceived causes of unnecessary delays and stoppages. A target of these reforms has been environmental citizen suits (ECS): legal or merits-review proceedings initiated by private parties to uphold public environmental rights or interests for predominantly public purposes in order to generate public environmental benefits. This article reports the results of an empirical analysis of delays and stoppages attributable to ECSs in the NSW Land & Environment Court over the period 2008 to 2015. Key findings include: 109 finalised ECSs were identified over the period; 33 of the determined ECSs were successful (broadly defined); in 27 of the 33 successful ECSs, the activity that was the subject of the proceedings was subsequently approved or otherwise allowed to proceed; and the median major project delay caused by ECSs was 4.4 months. The results suggest the claims ECSs significantly hinder economic growth by delaying and stopping development are largely baseless. ECSs were relatively uncommon, rarely stopped development, and rarely caused major project delays.

    更新日期:2018-01-12
  • Assessing direct and indirect emissions of greenhouse gases in road transportation, taking into account the role of uncertainty in the emissions inventory
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-12-27
    Alessandra La Notte, Stefania Tonin, Greti Lucaroni

    Greenhouse gas (GHG) concentration in the atmosphere has increased since the beginning of the industrial era, with dramatic effects on climate change. Transportation is one of the main sources of GHGs, with more than two-thirds of transport-related GHG emissions attributable to road vehicles. Any policy that aims to reduce GHG emissions needs robust measuring methods that guarantee the quality and reliability of primary data and estimates. However, these estimates are subject to uncertainty, both at the stage of compiling accounting tables and at the stage of using this information to formulate a specific policy question.This paper considers how to reduce uncertainty in estimating GHG emissions from road transportation, with specific reference to a regional emissions inventory in Italy. We propose the application of a use-chain model that can tackle uncertainty in measuring GHG emissions by enhancing the quality of the emissions data registry in the inventory. This new metric, which we call emission value at risk (VaR), draws from methodologies and concepts employed in the insurance and financial sectors. Moreover, additional assessments are performed, integrating the inventory data with those available in the regional energy balance and disaggregated sectoral economic dataset. The results show that a sound accounting method enables uncertainty in emission data to be taken into account, thus improving the design of appropriate strategies to reduce GHG emissions.

    更新日期:2017-12-27
  • Life cycle assessment of an energy-economy nexus: The case of Israel and South Korea
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-12-15
    Hojin Yu, David Pearlmutter, Moshe Schwartz

    Israel and South Korea have both achieved rapid economic growth since their post-war establishment, and among the common challenges that the two countries have faced is a conspicuous lack of domestic oil supplies. Although this chronic energy scarcity has not impeded the economic trajectory of either country, it has influenced their industrial structures in strikingly different ways – with Korea nevertheless developing a vast energy-intensive manufacturing sector, while Israel has largely relied on its service sector to support a growing consumer society. While different in industrial structure, however, the two economies have been connected by intensive trade relations, meaning that energy is consumed in one country for the production of goods used in the other. In order to examine the economic and environmental implications of the two economies' structural divergence and bilateral trade relations, we use economic input-output analysis to track the life cycle (LC) energy consumption of passenger cars – a product which has significant environmental impact due to energy consumption in both its production and use stages – which were manufactured in Korea and exported to Israel during the period of 1997–2011. Our findings show that while most of the LC energy consumption of the vehicles occurs in Israel where the vehicle operation takes place, this does not mean that Israel's “avoided energy” by importing the Korean cars is insignificant. The embodied energy of vehicles traded in 2011 reached 3179 TJ, exceeding the amount of energy used by Israel's entire on-site building construction sector over the same period. If the Israeli economy had hypothetically developed its own auto manufacturing industry including secondary suppliers to meet domestic demand as well as exports – as was done in Korea – the energy consumption in those industries would be equivalent to about half of the current energy use by Israel's entire industrial sector.

    更新日期:2017-12-16
  • 更新日期:2017-12-14
  • On legitimacy in impact assessment: An epistemologically-based conceptualisation
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-12-01
    Alan Bond, Jenny Pope, Francois Retief, Angus Morrison-Saunders

    Impact assessment (IA) is carried out as an ex ante process to inform decision-making. It includes requirements for engagement with stakeholders (including the public) regarding actions proposed by a proponent. A key issue with the various stakeholders involved is the perceived legitimacy of the IA, which can have implications both for the reputation of the proponent, and the likelihood of conflict over the decision. But the understanding of legitimacy in the IA literature has changed over time in line with an ontological shift from positivism (that scientifically generated information leads to better informed decisions) to the post-positivist acknowledgement of the limitations of scientific method whereby assumptions must be subject to transparency, deliberation and openness. This has led to an epistemological shift towards greater subjectivism which, we suggest, has created new opportunities (which have been realised in political decision-making) to subvert knowledge through the increased use of the Internet and social media. To address the potential for such subversion of legitimacy, we seek to conceptualise legitimacy in the IA context through framing IA around a critical realist ontology and a reliabilist virtue epistemology. This allows us to identify ‘knowledge legitimacy’ as an equally important component of IA legitimacy along with organisational legitimacy. We conceptualise knowledge legitimacy through literature review drawing on rich understandings of knowledge from IA and other fields of research in order to develop a four-dimensional typology. This includes the dimensions of: knowledge accuracy; knowledge restriction; knowledge diffusion; and knowledge spectrum. This is the first theoretically grounded attempt to understand legitimacy in IA. It is hoped that it will provoke discussion in the IA community to further advance theoretical understandings of IA and legitimacy of practice.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Assessing changes in eco-productivity of wastewater treatment plants: The role of costs, pollutant removal efficiency, and greenhouse gas emissions
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-12-06
    Germán Gémar, Trinidad Gómez, María Molinos-Senante, Rafael Caballero, Ramón Sala-Garrido

    Improving eco-efficiency of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) has been identified as being essential for achieving urban sustainability. Several previous papers have evaluated the eco-efficiency of WWTPs using data envelopment analysis (DEA) models. However, those models provided only a static assessment in that they ignored possible fluctuations over time within each plant. To overcome this temporal limitation, this paper evaluates dynamic eco-efficiency (changes in eco-productivity over time) of WWTPs using the dynamic weighted Russell directional distance model (WRDDM). This approach allows one to obtain an eco-productivity change index for each major component of the WRDDM model (costs, pollutants removal, and greenhouse gas emissions). Our results illustrate that although eco-productivity improved in half of the WWTPs we assessed, there was still potential for improving some eco-efficiency components. Moreover, operational costs and greenhouse gases emissions were the main drivers reducing eco-productivity. This paper demonstrates the importance of evaluating change in eco-productivity over time and in identifying the drivers associated with those changes, both of which can be used to support decision-making focused on the sustainability of WWTPs.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Exploring pluralism – Different stakeholder views of the expected and realised value of strategic environmental assessment (SEA)
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-12-07
    Lydia Cape, Francois Retief, Paul Lochner, Thomas Fischer, Alan Bond

    This paper explores the concept of pluralism by evaluating different stakeholder views on the expected and realised value of strategic environmental assessment (SEA). The research followed a single embedded case study approach (of a national-level SEA for renewable energy planning in South Africa) and engaged with four different stakeholder groups, namely government, industry, conservation groups, and interested and affected parties (IAPs). A total of 21 different value expectations (VEs) across all four stakeholder groups were identified. However, stakeholder groups contrast significantly in terms of VEs, with government concerned more with process and mandate; industry with cost, efficiency and certainty; conservation groups with data and technical aspects; and the IAPs with local scale issues. In terms of realisation of VEs the results suggest that SEA does provide opportunities for learning; focussing project level EIA and providing spatial guidance on the location of projects. However, SEA was less successful in realising integration of decision making and alignment of policy within government. Recognition and better understanding of the pluralistic nature of expected and realised VEs could potentially improve the legitimacy of SEA processes and methodologies if they are designed and implemented to accommodate pluralism.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Quantitative-qualitative assessments of environmental causal networks to support the DPSIR framework in the decision-making process
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-12-08
    Fernando Ramos-Quintana, M. Laura Ortíz-Hernández, Enrique Sánchez-Salinas, Esmeralda Úrsula-Vázquez, José Antonio Guerrero, Montserrat Zamorano

    The DPSIR framework helps to identify and situate stressors, drivers and pressure variables within a dynamic environmental process composed of cause-effect relations. However, an important aspect related to its structural deficiency implies the use of unidirectional causalities between variables. In this work, we extend the capacities of the DPSIR framework by addressing three important points. Firstly, causal networks are built instead of unidirectional causalities, the former based on paths represented by sequences of cause-effect relations between involved variables. These paths are derived from the population growth as a driving force variable, along with CO2 emissions, waste, water and loss of vegetation cover as pressure variables. Trends of these paths are combined to determine and quantitatively assess a global environmental state trend whose impacts on the environment require corrective management actions as a response. Secondly, quantitative assessments of environmental trends are transformed into fuzzy-qualitative data to facilitate their interpretation. Thirdly, a method based on weighted environmental management actions is presented to decision-makers who aspire to change current path trends in order to approach desirable scenarios similar to those put forth by the OECD outlook towards 2030. The results obtained applying this framework to the State of Morelos, México, show that it can be a useful support tool in the selection and monitoring of management actions capable of reaching favorable environmental trends.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • A comparative method of air emission impact assessment for building construction activities
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-30
    Malindu Sandanayake, Guomin Zhang, Sujeeva Setunge

    Different construction activities may indicate distinct environmental impacts due to their uniqueness. Ability to assess and compare the environmental impacts from different construction activities can aid the process of minimising emissions at different building construction processes. The study presents a comparative impact assessment methodology to evaluate environmental impacts at different activities during the building construction stage. Significant impact related construction activities for five major impact categories namely global warming potential (GWP 100), acidification potential (AP), Eutrophication potential (EP), Photochemical oxidation formation potential (POFP) and Human toxicity potential (HTP) are compared from the global, regional and local perspectives. A case study of a residential building in Australia is used to demonstrate the application of the functions of the developed method. The results of the case study indicated that the method can be effectively used to compare environmental impacts of different construction activities at different geographical perspectives considered. The method can be used by designers and contractors in comparing impacts of various construction activities to identify the most emission effective construction processes.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Stakeholders' manipulation of Environmental Impact Assessment
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-10-12
    Álvaro Enríquez-de-Salamanca

    Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a process where several stakeholders take part, each with different interests, making bias unavoidable and a major cause of concern, but there is a big difference between inherent stakeholders' bias and manipulation, an illegitimate attempt to alter decisions for spurious interests. Although manipulation has usually been attributed to developers, any stakeholder may try to use it for self-benefit. In this paper we analyse manipulation possibilities, and how they can be used by stakeholders. While bias is unavoidable and should be reduced, understood and managed in EIA, manipulation is unacceptable and must be excluded.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Strategic Environmental Assessment, key issues of its effectiveness. The results of the Speedy Project
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-10-12
    Donato Di Ludovico, Valter Fabietti

    This paper describes the results of the European Speedy Project, concerning the application of cross-border SEA, a research that had two main objectives. The first has been the definition of cooperation modalities between various public body as well as private entity through the realization of a digital platform. The aims of this innovative platform include sharing of multidisciplinary knowledge, the training, the participation, etc. The second objective has been to draft a proposal for revision of Directive 2001/42/EC based on the criticalities of implementation in individual Member States emerged during the development of the project. This revision has taken, in the final research report, the form of problem areas and suggestions for amending the Directive. A particularly important result, in addition to those related to platform implementation and the SEA Directive revision, is the e-learning section of the same platform. The continuous training provision of the e-learning system, as well as providing a valuable support for professional upgrading, can provide a useful link between the experiences developed by territorial authorities or individual professionals and the construction of a disciplinary and technical corpus that meet new challenges arising from the changes in society and the evolution of the environmental system.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Evaluating EIA systems' effectiveness: A state of the art
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-10-19
    John J. Loomis, Maurício Dziedzic

    Analyzing the effectiveness of environmental impact assessment (EIA) is an important theme in EIA literature. Over the course of its development, the manifold term “effectiveness” has been delineated into four dimensions: Procedural, substantive, transactive, and normative. The present state of the art review covers not only studies about these concepts, but also the methods used to test them. It analyzes trends in 64 studies over a 20-year period. It is observed that results oriented research is more common than process oriented, but given the links between results and processes, procedural effectiveness remains the lens through which policy solutions are analyzed. Future research is recommended comparing developing and developed countries as well as studies focusing on subnational EIA systems. Serious gaps in the literature remain, such as developing methods to evaluate the direct impact of EIA on decision-making and how to integrate the pluralism found in the EIA process for sustainable ends. Reliance on perceptual survey and interview methods is common for substantive and normative effectiveness studies. The least studied dimension, transactive dimension, requires more study, specifically the cost efficiency of EIA. Promisingly, multidimensional studies are becoming more common that highlight linkages among these dimensions, although the nature of these linkages must be tested with more case studies

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • A methodological framework of eco-efficiency based on fuzzy logic and Life Cycle Assessment applied to a Mexican SME
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-11-01
    Alfredo García Besné, David Luna, Abraham Cobos, David Lameiras, Hugo Ortiz-Moreno, Leonor Patricia Güereca

    In this paper an eco-efficiency analysis methodology that takes into account Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and fuzzy logic is presented. It consists of four stages: (1) perform LCA and basic cost analysis, (2) normalize the environmental and economic impact categories results, (3) integrate economic and environmental impact categories by means of a fuzzy treatment and (4) obtaining the fuzzy eco-efficiency index. The result is a preference hierarchy that indicates an order of scenarios according to their degree of eco-efficiency. The methodology proposed is applied to a Mexican SME: a plastic products manufacturer. Six different supplier locations of polypropylene were considered: United States of America (transporting by land and by water), China, Singapore, Europe, and United Arab Emirates. The robustness of the methodological framework was tested by means of a comparative analysis with a decision surface graph, an eco-efficiency index, and random runs to prove their variability. Results show that USA is the most preferable supplier location when polypropylene is transported by land. The comparative analysis with the random series results and the decision surface graph, allowed to corroborate the stability of the fuzzy preference orders and to identify clusters of scenarios with an equally eco-efficient performance. Thus, the robustness of the methodology proposed was validated.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • A contribution to the conceptualisation of quality in impact assessment
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-10-25
    A. Bond, F. Retief, B. Cave, M. Fundingsland, P.N. Duinker, R. Verheem, A.L. Brown

    Quality is much sought after in, and a basic foundation for, good impact assessment (IA). However, the term is rarely defined, has an uncertain relationship with IA effectiveness, and it means different things to different stakeholders, which can lead to debates over the legitimacy associated with an IA process. Thus, IA quality needs conceptualising to position research and practice within broader understandings. This paper contributes to this conceptualisation by identifying nine dimensions of quality through a process of literature review drawing on three fields of study in which quality and quality management have already been debated and conceptualised: education; health care; and business. This approach sidesteps the plural views on quality existing within the field of IA itself which might otherwise bias the identification of quality dimensions. We therefore propose that the dimensions of IA quality are: Efficiency; Optimacy; Conformance; Legitimacy; Equity; Capacity Maintenance; Transformative Capacity; and Quality Management. A literature review of IA research and practice confirms the relevance of the identified quality dimensions to IA. We identify, to an extent, the relationship between quality and effectiveness. Quality aligns with procedural and transactive effectiveness, partly aligns with normative effectiveness and is distinct from, but helps to deliver, substantive effectiveness.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Strategic health assessment for large scale industry development activities: An introduction
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-11-01
    Patrick Harris, Francesca Viliani

    Attention to the determinants of health and health equity in impact assessment remains under-utilised at the project, Environmental Impact Assessment, level. Determinants focussed health impact assessment has developed at an upstream, policy level, but tends to assess draft proposals rather than form the basis of policies and plans. Project level health (risk) impact assessment tends to focus on a project by project basis, and generally eschews a broad model of health. One answer to this ‘health and impact assessment’ problem is to shift attention to the strategic level, in a similar manner to, and learning from, the development of Strategic Environmental Assessment and its theoretical and practical derivatives. In this article we explain the need for this shift both conceptually and practically by navigating the literature. Our analysis derives specifically from developing the Strategic Health Impact Assessment section of new international industry HIA guidance, coupled with work in and around health impact assessment and policy analysis for the past decade. We develop characteristics of conducting strategic health assessments for multiple industry development activities at the supra national, national or regional level. Our intended audience are public administrators, industry planners and financial sector investors. A particular focus is low and middle income countries, now seen by industry as emerging markets.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Impacts of environmental exposure on thermal and mycological characteristics of insulation wools
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-11-01
    Nicolas Dujardin, Vincent Feuillet, David Garon, Laurent Ibos, Mario Marchetti, Laurent Peiffer, Didier Pottier, Virginie Séguin, Dominique Theile

    Fieldwork was conducted on 138 energy efficient buildings, to check if building site practices induced exposure to weather of thermal insulation. In nearly 80% of cases, insulation was exposed to weather due to insufficient protection. Therefore insulating wools were exposed, divided into three parts (control, exposure under shelter, exposure to weather). After the exposure period these samples were submitted to thermal conductivity measurements and infrared spectroscopy. A numerical study was carried out to evaluate the influence of weather conditions on thermal performance. Identifications of molds were realized by direct cultures of each sample. Mycological analyses provided the most significant results, showing a significant effect of exposure condition, with possible consequences in human health (toxinogenic, allergenic or pathogenic species) and material properties (cellulolytic species). Infrared spectrometry also showed some changes in sensitivity to water. These results show the interest to study in more detail the variations in the sensitivity, to moisture and mold, of insulation material throughout its ageing on site, and the interactions with the practices of the building process.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Systemising gender integration with rural stakeholders' sustainability impact assessments: A case study with three low-input upgrading strategies
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-11-01
    F. Graef, L.E.A. Hernandez, H.J. König, G. Uckert, M.T. Mnimbo

    Participatory action research across food value chains (FVC) can help stabilise the food security of subsistence farmers by implementing upgrading strategies (UPS). These strategies can be assessed ex-ante and ex-post for their potential social, ecological and economic sustainability impacts. UPS implementation, however, often entails gender-specific changes and challenges in a farmer's social life, economy and environment that either were not perceived and anticipated beforehand or are not followed up during UPS implementation. Before and during their implementation, therefore, UPS need to be entirely understood and assessed by both genders in terms of their potential social, ecological and economic sustainability impacts. This article conceptualises a systematic framework for integrating gender in sustainability impact assessments and presents gender-based assessment differences in three low-input UPS in Tanzanian FVC. We conducted ex-ante and ex-post impact assessments using nine food security criteria developed earlier by the authors following the Framework of Participatory Impact Assessment (FoPIA). Sustainability impact assessments—to a greater extent than expected—differed to various extents between the genders for a) different food security criteria, b) different sustainability dimensions (economic, social, and environmental), c) different points in time (T0, T1) of assessments, d) different implemented UPS, and e) different members within the groups of female and/or male stakeholders. The results demonstrate the substantial importance of integrating female-male segregated assessments and perceptions before and while implementing food-securing UPS. We anticipate that integrating these assessments and perceptions as regular components will lead to better gendered social learning for both scientists and stakeholders and a holistic understanding of complex local food systems.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Index system of urban resource and environment carrying capacity based on ecological civilization
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-11-14
    Mo Zhang, Yiming Liu, Jing Wu, Tiantian Wang

    ‘Ecological Civilization’ is a Chinese characteristic concept. It is an important pathway for China to achieve sustainable development and has become a key strategy to address China's serious resource and environmental issues. To solve the disparity between resources and the environment, an index system of urban resource and environment carrying capacity (URECC) based on ecological civilization should be established. This study explored the new connotations of URECC, and constructed an evaluation index system that contains 18 indicators selected from water carrying capacity, land carrying capacity, atmospheric environmental carrying capacity, energy carrying capacity, and environmental carrying capacity of solid waste. The index system fully embodies the supporting and restraining function to resources and environment for human development and reflects the dynamic change of URECC. We used URECC of Tianjin from 2007 to 2015 as a case study. The results reveal that the index system is not only able to reflect the current status of URECC, but also reflects the changes of increment to the original carrying capacity, so that economic and social development can be constrained within URECC. It provides a reference for future research on the carrying capacity index system of the city, and also has important practical significance to guide the sustainable development of the city.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Including health in environmental impact assessments of three mega transport projects in Sydney, Australia: A critical, institutional, analysis
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-10-12
    Patrick Harris, Emily Riley, Peter Sainsbury, Jennifer Kent, Fran Baum

    This article details how health impacts came to be assessed in three mega, billion dollar, transport infrastructure projects, two road tunnels and one light rail, in Sydney Australia. The known health impacts of transport decisions include environmental, behavioural and social factors. EIA practice prioritises environmental risks, and there has been scant attention to understanding why this is persistently the case. Here we provide a critical theory lens, using critical realist methodology, to analyse empirical data collected through interviews and documents for the three cases. Our analysis focusses on EIA practice within its institutional context, building on ‘new institutional’ approaches to policy analysis that emphasise actors (the stakeholders involved in the EIA), structures (the ‘rules of the game’ that influence practice in systems), and power. We find that the various actors engaged in the EIAs principally to address particular goals that were pre-determined by the system in which they worked or belonged. Structurally, each EIA was undertaken as a compliance process relatively late in the planning process. Considering project options was not part of the EIA's purpose. Resources to undertake the EIAs were provided by those funding the projects (“the proponents”) and determined the types of issues to be considered. The full range of links between transport and health were not identified. Concerning power, health impacts were considered through inter-professional technical negotiation. The inability to engage in the fundamental options driving projects meant impacted communities questioned the validity of the EIA, and the health assessment within this. Our institutional analysis provides important knowledge about how the EIAs preferenced a focus on specific health risks to the detriment of the known broader determinants that shape the health impacts of transport.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Use of significance thresholds to integrate cumulative effects into project-level socio-economic impact assessment in Canada
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-07-29
    Chris Joseph, Taylor Zeeg, David Angus, Anna Usborne, Erin Mutrie

    A longstanding critique of project-level environmental assessment is that it is weak at addressing cumulative effects, and because of this many argue that cumulative effects are best managed at a regional scale. However, in the absence of regional management it is important that project-level assessment supports cumulative effects management as best as possible. In this paper we present case study socio-economic impact assessments of liquefied natural gas development on Aboriginal groups on Canada's west coast. The case studies use an analytical structure modified from typical Canadian practice including unambiguous and non-arbitrary significance thresholds grounded in stakeholder values to focus baselines, impact assessment, and significance determination on cumulative effects. This approach is found to be more capable of informing decision-makers on cumulative effects as well as more rigorous and transparent than typical assessments. Much of this approach is not conceptually new, but at least in western Canada such an approach is not typically used or meaningfully implemented by practitioners. As such, the case studies serve to illustrate how practice can bolster project-level assessment.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Towards a framework for the assessment of saltwater intrusion in coastal aquifers
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-08-17
    G. Rachid, M. El-Fadel, M. Abou Najm, I. Alameddine
    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Digital archives, big data and image-based culturomics for social impact assessment: Opportunities and challenges
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-08-20
    Kate Sherren, John R. Parkins, Michael Smit, Mona Holmlund, Yan Chen

    Social impact assessment (SIA) is well-established but uses conventional approaches that have become less effective in recent decades, particularly in relation to declining survey response rates and a lack of youth engagement. Images from digital archives and social media sources are poised to advance the research and practice of SIA by transcending text-based methods with insights into changing landscapes, and human engagement with them. This viewpoint describes progress, challenges and cautions toward the development of such tools (defined as culturomics), using hydroelectricity cases to illustrate potential approaches. These tools build on foundational work in a range of disciplines, including the humanities and computer science. We describe necessary advances in machine learning, image digitization, and data aggregation and visualization techniques, as well as ways to ensure that such tools are carefully tested, applied and interpreted. Challenges include the automation, acquisition and management of datasets, and using these tools appropriately and equitably. Critically, culturomics of any kind must not be used as a replacement for engagement with people, but as complementary to inclusive stakeholder engagement.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Analysis of the decision-support function of policy assessment in real-world policy making in the field of poverty and social inequalities. Case study on migrant integration policies in the Brussels-Capital Region
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-06
    Gille Feyaerts, Murielle Deguerry, Patrick Deboosere, Myriam De Spiegelaere

    Despite its high potential to support decision-making, the role of policy assessment in real-world policy making in the field of poverty and social inequalities remains largely questioned. In this study, we analyse policy assessment's role in a context of real-world policymaking, by means of a case study on a legislative proposal on integration policy for immigrant newcomers in the Brussels-Capital Region, for which we evaluate the potential effects on poverty and social inequalities. We first analyse the policy process surrounding the policy proposal – a process that is often treated as a black box within policy assessment research. Understanding the factors that influence and determine the decision-making process, enables us to gain insight into the potential decision-support function(s). Second, we develop an approach to policy assessment that aims to fully exploit its potential to contribute to the functions of both instrumental and conceptual learning. For this purpose, we propose to introduce the approach of realist evaluation and to focus on evaluating the underlying policy intervention theory from the perspective of poverty and social inequalities. Finally, we illustrate this new approach and its added value by applying it to the legislative proposal on integration policy and analyse its contribution to policy-oriented learning.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Healthcare Building Sustainability Assessment tool - Sustainable Effective Design criteria in the Portuguese context
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-06
    Maria de Fátima Castro, Ricardo Mateus, Luís Bragança

    Tools and methods to improve current practices and quality in the healthcare building sector are necessary to support decision-making at different building life cycle phases. Furthermore, Healthcare Building Sustainability Assessment (HBSA) Methods are based on criteria organised into different levels, such as categories and indicators. These criteria highlight aspects of significant importance when designing and operating a sustainable healthcare building. To bring more objectivity to the sustainability assessments, the standardisation bodies (CEN and ISO) proposed core indicators that should be used in the evaluation of the environmental, societal and economic performances of buildings. Nevertheless, relying on state of the art analysis, it is possible to conclude that there are aspects of major importance for the operation of healthcare buildings that are not considered in the HBSA methods. Thus, the aim of this paper is to discuss the context of sustainability assessment methods in the field of healthcare buildings and to present a proposal for the incorporation of Sustainable-Effective Design (SED) criteria in a new HBSA method. The used research method is innovative since in the development of the list of sustainability criteria it considers the opinion of main healthcare buildings' stakeholders, the existing healthcare assessment methods and the ISO and CEN standardisation works in the field of the methods to assess the sustainability of construction works. As a result, the proposed method is composed of fifty-two sustainability indicators that cover the different dimensions of the sustainability concept to support decision making during the design of a new or retrofitted healthcare building in urban areas.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Assessing the social sustainability contribution of an infrastructure project under conditions of uncertainty
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-07
    Leonardo A. Sierra, Víctor Yepes, Eugenio Pellicer

    Assessing the viability of a public infrastructure includes economic, technical and environmental aspects; however, on many occasions, the social aspects are not always adequately considered. This article proposes a procedure to estimate the social sustainability of infrastructure projects under conditions of uncertainty, based on a multicriteria deterministic method. The variability of the method inputs is contributed by the decision-makers. Uncertain inputs are treated through uniform and beta PERT distributions. The Monte Carlo method is used to propagate uncertainty in the method. A case study of a road infrastructure improvement in El Salvador is used to illustrate this treatment. The main results determine the variability of the short and long-term social improvement indices by infrastructure and the probability of the position in the prioritization of the alternatives. The proposed mechanism improves the reliability of the decision making early in infrastructure projects, taking their social contribution into account. The results can complement environmental and economic sustainability assessments.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Adapting social impact assessment to address a project's human rights impacts and risks
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-08
    Ana Maria Esteves, Gabriela Factor, Frank Vanclay, Nora Götzmann, Sergio Moreira

    We address the weaknesses inherent in the social risk assessments undertaken for business, especially in the extractive industries. In contrast to the conventional approach that considers consequence to the company rather than to impacted communities, conformance with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights requires that consequence to affected communities has precedence. In order for social risks to be properly assessed, we consider that: companies need to know and understand the human rights impacts of their activities; contemporary approaches to project impact and risk assessment need to be adapted to consider human rights; and environmental impact assessment (EIA) and social impact assessment (SIA) methods need to be adapted to give greater attention to impacts on human rights. Using an example from the mining, oil and gas sector, we provide a method that differentiates social risks from business risks, and we position impact assessment as an instrument that actively facilitates the improved identification, analysis and management of social risks. Practical adaptations to SIA activities and risk assessment processes are provided. Taking human rights impacts into account and using the dimensions of gravity, extent, vulnerability and remediability, we nominate criteria to assess the significance of negative social impacts.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Including biodiversity in life cycle assessment – State of the art, gaps and research needs
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-08
    Lisa Winter, Annekatrin Lehmann, Natalia Finogenova, Matthias Finkbeiner

    Purpose For over 20 years the feasibility of including man-made impacts on biodiversity in the context of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) has been explored. However, a comprehensive biodiversity impact assessment has so far not been performed. The aim of this study is to analyse how biodiversity is currently viewed in LCA, to highlight limitations and gaps and to provide recommendations for further research. Method Firstly, biodiversity indicators are examined according to the level of biodiversity they assess (genetic, species, ecosystem) and to their usefulness for LCA. Secondly, relevant pressures on biodiversity that should be included in LCA are identified and available models (in and outside of an LCA context) for their assessment are discussed. Thirdly, existing impact assessment models are analysed in order to determine whether and how well pressures are already integrated into LCA. Finally, suggestions on how to include relevant pressures and impacts on biodiversity in LCA are provided and the necessary changes in each LCA phase that must follow are discussed. Results The analysis of 119 indicators shows that 4% of indicators represent genetic diversity, 40% species diversity and 35% ecosystem diversity. 21% of the indicators consider further biodiversity-related topics. Out of the indicator sample, 42 indicators are deemed useful as impact indicators in LCA. Even though some identified pressures are already included in LCA with regard to their impacts on biodiversity (e.g. land use, carbon dioxide emissions etc.), other proven pressures on biodiversity have not yet been considered (e.g. noise, artificial light). Conclusion Further research is required to devise new options (e.g. impact assessment models) for integrating biodiversity into LCA. The final goal is to cover all levels of biodiversity and include all missing pressures in LCA. Tentative approaches to achieve this goal are outlined.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • The attractive concept of simplicity in environmental impact assessment: Perceptions of outcomes in southeastern Brazil
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-15
    Alberto Fonseca, Sander Elias Rodrigues

    Pressures are mounting for the simplification of environmental impact assessment (EIA). This phenomenon is drawing increasing scholarly attention, but studies have not gone far beyond speculating what could happen as a result of recently implemented or proposed regulatory changes. This paper takes a more longitudinal look at simplified EIAs. The main objective was to analyze the perceived outcomes of a number of simplified EIA processes, using Brazil as the empirical context. More specifically, this paper aimed at understanding: 1) how simplified EIAs have been conceptualized and implemented in southeastern Brazil; and 2) how developers and civil servants in that region perceive the outcomes of simplified EIAs. This study adopted a sequential mixed method research approach. Data was collected through literature reviews, 261 telephone-based interviews and 10 face-to-face interviews. Degrees of EIA simplification can vary significantly within and across jurisdictions. In any case, simplification is often framed as a win-win solution to EIA ineffectiveness, through which regulatory and procedural changes are made to ease the process, while, at the same time, maintaining or providing better environmental protection. This approach is more frequently applied to potentially low-impact processes. Chi-square tests of the data collected through telephone interviews in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais indicated that developers tend to perceive EIA processes as difficult and slow regardless of how simplified it is. Most civil servants, who were directly involved in the implementation of simplified EIAs in state environmental agencies, argued that simplified EIAs are driven mostly by environmental agencies, as these institutions have long been unable to cope with an ever-increasing load of license applications. Policy outcomes of simplified EIAs in the territory are not sufficiently monitored by state agencies. Civil servants revealed concerns about the potential long term effects of EIA simplification on the ground, as they have had limited resources for audits and inspections.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Life cycle impact assessment of home energy management systems (HEMS) using dynamic emissions factors for electricity in Finland
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-19
    Jean-Nicolas Louis, Eva Pongrácz

    Decarbonising the European economy is a long-term goal in which the residential sector will play a significant role. Smart buildings for energy management are one means of decarbonisation, by reducing energy consumption and related emissions. This study investigated the environmental impacts of smart house automation using life cycle impact assessment. The ReCiPe method was selected for use, in combination with dynamic emissions factors for electricity in Finland. The results indicated that a high level of technology deployment may be counter-effective, due to high electricity consumption by the sensor network, automation system and computing devices. The results also indicated that number of inhabitants per household directly affected the environmental impacts of home automation. A single-person household saw its environmental impacts increase by 15%, while those of a five-person household increased by 3% in the worst-case scenario. The manufacturing phase contributed the major share of environmental impacts, exceeding the use phase in multiple categories. These findings indicate that finding the sweet spot in which technology can promote decarbonisation will be crucial to achieving the goal of a low‑carbon economy.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Land take and the effectiveness of project screening in Environmental Impact Assessment: Findings from an empirical study
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-09-22
    Davide Geneletti, Alessandro Biasiolli, Angus Morrison-Saunders
    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • 更新日期:2017-12-14
  • High speed rail comparative strategic assessments in EU member states
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-06-08
    Sofia Carvalho, Maria Partidario, William Sheate

    This paper explores the role and capacity of strategic level assessments in addressing the strategic dimension of High Speed Rail (HSR) proposals and influencing decision-making processes. The overall research objective was to find out to what extent opportunities for strategic thinking are being undertaken in HSR. Three different cases of high speed rail were compared – High Speed Rail 2 (HS2) in the UK, High Speed Rail Network (RFAV) in Portugal and European Gauge Railway Line Kaunas in the Lithuanian-Latvian Border (Rail Baltica 2). Strategic environmental assessment (SEA) effectiveness literature was reviewed to draw on criteria that could establish a comparative framework to explain how environmental and sustainability assessments were undertaken in the three aforementioned European high speed rail case studies. Research results allow us to conclude that an SEA or a sustainability assessment/appraisal (SA) will be most beneficial if developed before any HSR project to first determine if HSR is really necessary and strategically justifiable to the achievement of both environmental and sustainability objectives. Results achieved suggest that even though the SEA and SA in the three cases studied can be said to have influenced the planning process mostly at project-level decisions, it also shows a missed opportunity to contribute to developing a high level strategy for HSR that addresses several strategic issues, assessing options before they are undertaken.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Fragmentary provisions for uncertainty disclosure and consideration in EA legislation, regulations and guidelines and the need for improvement
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-06-08
    Olena Pavlyuk, Bram F. Noble, Jill A.E. Blakley, Jochen A.G. Jaeger

    The consideration and disclosure of uncertainties is fundamental to a credible EA process, but little is known about the nature and type of requirements and guidance available to proponents, practitioners and decision makers about how to deal with uncertainties. This paper examines the provisions for considering and disclosing uncertainties in EA. Methods are based on a comparative review of uncertainty provisions in EA legislation, regulations and guidance documents under Canadian federal, provincial and territorial jurisdictions. Results show 10 types of provisions applied at different stages of the EA process with considerable jurisdictional variability and incoherence. The most common provision was that decision makers can request that project proponents provide more information, followed by the preparation of contingency plans, and that practitioners document their assumptions about data reliability. Most of these provisions were found in guidelines, versus legislation or regulations; and most addressed impact management, with very few provisions for addressing uncertainty during EA review and decision making. Current practices of uncertainty (non)disclosure and (non)consideration in EA can be explained, in part, by the superficial nature and limited extent of the requirements and guidance made available to EA practitioners, proponents, and decision makers. The existing requirements placed on proponents and practitioners to disclose and consider uncertainties are necessary, but insufficient. Stronger, more coherent and transparent requirements for those tasked with EA review and decision making to consider uncertainty information when disclosed, and the development of practical guidance on how to do so, are needed.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Evaluation of the environmental impact assessment system and implementation in Myanmar: Its significance in oil and gas industry
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-06-09
    Thiri Shwesin Aung

    Myanmar's political and economic transformation and drastic expansion of foreign direct investment in natural resource sector necessitate systematic safeguards to mitigate impacts from its development activities. Myanmar promulgated the first national EIA law and procedure only recently, in 2016, and the country's institutional and financial capacity is extremely limited to implement effective EIA. This article evaluates Myanmar's EIA system against a set of evaluative criteria developed by Wood (1995) and modified by Annandle (2001). The evaluation was based on the review of the literature, investigation of EIA legislative and administrative framework, and several other sources of data and information. Opinions of professionals from international and government agencies, and researchers are also solicited. The paper then evaluates the rate of EIA disclosure in O&G sector and whether EIA in Myanmar is significance in mitigating the impact of O&G operations on the environment. The review of EIA system indicates that Myanmar generally has sound legal and administrative framework for EIA, however, its practical implementation reveals several major challenges and weaknesses. The presence of more than one standard EIA procedure and lack of inter-departmental coordination and consultation are also major concerns. Overall, the quality of EIA reports and the level of disclosure in O&G sector is higher than that of other sectors in Myanmar. Through the analysis, the paper summarizes the fundamental challenges faced by companies and government, opportunities and good practices in implementing EIA systems and propose recommendations to strengthen EIA performance. The findings of this study expect to contribute to strengthening EIA system and performance in Myanmar and other developing countries, especially in Southeast Asia.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Community participation in Health Impact Assessment. A scoping review of the literature
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-06-23
    Lea den Broeder, Ellen Uiters, Wim ten Have, Annemarie Wagemakers, Albertine Jantine Schuit

    Currently, the engagement of local communities in Health Impact Assessment is becoming more and more important. A scoping review was performed to take stock of visions, methods and experiences in this field. A combined Scopus and Medline search yielded 100 articles in scientific journals. The final selection consisted of 43 papers, including case studies, evaluation studies, reviews, and opinion papers. After analysis, consultation of four experts was performed to check preliminary study outcomes. A grey literature web search was performed to check and complement the results. Results show that community participation is generally considered a core element in HIA. Views as expressed in the papers concern, firstly, the need for and value of local knowledge, secondly, the adherence to or application of democratic values and, thirdly, empowerment of communities. Three categories of methods are used in relation to community participation, often in combination: methods to facilitate knowledge elicitation, to ensure the inclusion of communities in the HIA process, and to build community capacity to participate in policy development. However, the theoretical or practical underpinning of the choice for specific methods is mostly not presented. The experiences described in the papers mainly focus on the access to local knowledge and its usability as a source of evidence in the HIA process. Described effects of community participation are (improved) relations between communities and local agencies, policy makers and professionals and the empowerment of community members. Although these effects are ascribed to community participation, many papers do not provide support for this conclusion beyond the retrospective perception of participants. Expert consultation and additional analysis of the grey literature supported the results derived from the scientific literature and provided more in-depth knowledge. In the grey literature theoretical frameworks, methods and tools for community participation in HIA were more extensively reported as compared to the scientific literature. We conclude that the visions, methods and experiences concerning community participation show that a participative approach may contribute to better, context specific knowledge. It appears that participative HIA has health promotion potential as it helps develop responsive policies. To accomplish this, HIA should, firstly, be better embedded in broader health promotion programmes. Secondly, the methods and approaches for community participation applied in HIA should be theory-informed and well described. The grey literature offers entry points. Finally, more robust and systematic evaluation and research is needed to assess the impact of HIAs on communities and policies.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Assessing the urban carbon footprint: An overview
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-08-09
    Mariarosaria Lombardi, Elisabetta Laiola, Caterina Tricase, Roberto Rana
    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Quantifying impact reduction due to avoidance, minimization and restoration for a natural gas pipeline in the Peruvian Andes
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-06-27
    C.T. Sahley, B. Vildoso, C. Casaretto, P. Taborga, K. Ledesma, R. Linares-Palomino, G. Mamani, F. Dallmeier, A. Alonso

    We present monitoring methods and quantitative biodiversity data to document components of the mitigation hierarchy. We estimated avoidance, minimization, restoration and impact reduction in quality hectares for the 25 m wide right of way of a 408 km natural gas buried pipeline that crosses 14 Ecological Landscape Units (ELUs) in the tropical Andes of Peru. We found that applying the mitigation hierarchy as part of a comprehensive biodiversity action plan substantially reduced impacts on biodiversity in all habitats studied. Avoidance and right of way minimization contributed to significant impact reduction. We quantified impact reduction during construction and operation on the right of way of the pipeline over a five-year period and found that restoration was the greatest contributor to reducing impacts. We documented that most ELUs have a positive restoration trajectory. We also documented how monitoring over large scale spatial scales, in combination with site-specific monitoring, generated data for management to determine restoration priorities and impact mitigation. A biodiversity action plan that incorporated the mitigation hierarchy and a science-based biodiversity monitoring and assessment program contributed to biodiversity management of the project and played an important role in minimizing and managing impacts.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • An integrated modelling framework to assess long-term impacts of water management strategies steering soil subsidence in peatlands
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-06-27
    H.A. van Hardeveld, P.P.J. Driessen, P.P. Schot, M.J. Wassen

    Around the world many peatlands are managed unsustainably. Drainage of the peat causes soil subsidence and a range of negative societal impacts. Integrated strategies are required to ensure more sustainable long-term settings, based on impact assessment models that simulate the interrelated dynamics of water management and soil subsidence, and determine the spatial and temporal range of societal impacts. This paper presents an integrated modelling framework that meets these requirements. We used the framework to assess the impacts of a range of water management strategies in Dutch peatlands. Average soil subsidence rates were shown to range from 0.6 to 4.5 mm·y− 1, resulting in marked differences in societal impacts that affect stakeholders unequally. Moreover, the impacts on real estate damage and water system maintenance revealed inverse trends that result in increasingly unbalanced cost-benefit ratios. The generated insights led the regional water authority to change their current water management strategy, preventing unsustainable future developments. We find the results relevant for improving stakeholders' awareness of long-term impacts of management strategies, and making negotiation processes on goals, means, and possible future pathways more transparent.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Mapping environmental sensitivity: A systematic online approach to support environmental assessment and planning
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-07-03
    Ainhoa González Del Campo

    Environmental sensitivity analysis provides a framework for systematically and objectively determining the potential for significant environmental impacts. The higher the natural or acquired sensitivity of the receiving environment, the less capable it is to cope with human-induced change. Given that sensitivity is context- and spatially-specific, Geographic Information Systems have been applied to develop an operational Webtool to analyse it. The Webtool enables a rapid and replicable spatial examination of environmental sensitivities and potential for land-use conflicts that supports Strategic Environmental Assessment and, ultimately, informed planning and decision-making. The novelty is on the provision of an online geoprocessing Widget that enables creation of context-specific maps. Pilot testing the Webtool in land-use and renewable energy planning through stakeholder engagement has validated its applicability. Stakeholders confirmed that it enables replicating and, in some cases, improving in-house SEA mapping processes while saving time and effort. However, its full reliance on publicly available spatial datasets renders completeness and resolution issues. The Webtool provides a critical starting-point for sectoral planning discussions and for developing plan/programme alternatives that avoid or minimise potentially incompatible or unsustainable zonings, while promoting consistency and transparency in impact assessment.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Building rehabilitation versus demolition and new construction: Economic and environmental assessment
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-07-10
    Mª. Desirée Alba-Rodríguez, Alejandro Martínez-Rocamora, Patricia González-Vallejo, Antonio Ferreira-Sánchez, Madelyn Marrero

    Since the end of the twentieth century, discussion on dwelling rehabilitation versus its demolition and new construction has been steadily increasing in intensity, which is especially due to the necessity for the regeneration of urban centres. However, rehabilitation is not always considered the most economical solution, and demolition and new construction may constitute a better option. In the present work, a multi-family building in Seville, Spain, is used as a case study. After having suffered damage from a construction failure, it is assessed for its complete rehabilitation. Defective maintenance has worsened the bad condition of the building. A model is proposed, from the project budget perspective, that allows the environmental (Ecological Footprint indicator) and the economic (project's bill of quantities) assessment of the recovery of the dwelling. In the case study, the rehabilitation Ecological Footprint and the project cost are 0.06 gha/m2 of floor area (457.22 EUR/m2) and 0.14 gha/m2 (576.33 EUR/m2) for a new building on the same plot, respectively. It can be deduced that, even with a severely damaged building, the repair and retrofit work incurs a lower economic and environmental impact than that of the total replacement with a new construction.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Health impact assessment in environmental impact assessment in China: Status, practice and problems
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-07-13
    I-Shin Chang, Qimanguli Yilihamu, Jing Wu, Huilei Wu, Bo Nan

    In China, the environmental impact assessment (EIA) system has gradually developed into an integrated evaluation system, owing to continuous improvement on institutional framework, system infrastructure, technical methods and professionals training, since EIA was first introduced in 1979. Though health impact assessment (HIA) is a part of the EIA system, the development of HIA is so slow as to remain at the early developing stage. This research aims to understand the extent and main issues concerning “health considerations” under the context of EIA, in China. Through case study on 42 environmental impact statements, the results demonstrate that HIA was not implemented in most of the cases, and health issues were not even mentioned in more than half of these cases. Where HIA was implemented, various problems were revealed through this study, including lacks of systematic approaching tools, insufficient supporting data on health effects, ineffective public participation, limited health considerations on biophysics, and so forth. Nevertheless, these problems can be attributed to lacks of legal supports, systematic evaluation methods, knowledge on evaluation technologies, and professional training institutions for HIA in China. In order to improve HIA methodologies, technologies, and management, to perfect HIA evaluation system, and to enhance public participation system within HIA, some recommendations from institutional, technical, administrative, and managerial aspects were then proposed in this study.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • 更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Environmental impact of electricity relocation: A quasi-natural experiment from interregional electricity transmission
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-07-24
    Jianglong Li, Boqiang Lin

    Pollutants such as sulfur would concentrate in the source regions and thus the localized impacts are more obvious. Local balance of electricity by transporting coal has resulted in dense concentration of coal-fired power plants in load centers and caused severe environmental problems. Electricity relocation through interregional transmission is another choice for energy transportation to achieve electricity balance across regions and pollution mitigation. Using interregional electricity transmission (IRET) lines in China as a quasi-natural experiment, this paper assesses the environmental impact of electricity relocation. In the assessment, the grid organization of “province as executor” in China is considered because it affects the sphere of IRET's influence on pollution mitigation. Here we show the environmental benefits of electricity relocation. We find that, electricity relocation through interregional transmission leads to the growth rate of sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission decreasing 7% in landing areas and Sichuan province benefits most from electricity relocation. It is interesting that there is no significant increase of SO2 emission growth rate in sending areas compared to counterfactuals if there had no IRET due to more integration of clean energy and improved emission efficiency in sending areas. Placebo study and robustness check show that the results are quite convincing. Therefore, IRET provides an appealing choice for China's environmental control in eastern region, and it is not necessarily at the cost of pollution in western region. The methodology can be applied to assess the environmental impacts of other program or policy elsewhere.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Environmental risk assessment for invasive alien species: A case study of apple snails affecting ecosystem services in Europe
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-04-03
    Gianni Gilioli, Gritta Schrader, Nils Carlsson, Ellen van Donk, Casper H.A. van Leeuwen, Pablo R. Martín, Sara Pasquali, Montserrat Vilà, Sybren Vos

    The assessment of the risk posed by invasive alien species (IAS) to the environment is a component of increasing importance for Pest Risk Analysis. Standardized and comprehensive procedures to assess their impacts on ecosystem services have been developed only recently. The invasive apple snails (Pomacea canaliculata and P. maculata) are used as a case study to demonstrate the application of an innovative procedure assessing the potential impact of these species on shallow freshwater ecosystems with aquatic macrophytes in Europe. The apple snail, Pomacea maculata, recently established in the Ebro delta in Spain resulting in a serious threat to rice production and wetlands, having also a high risk to spread to other European wetlands. Here, the population abundance of apple snails is regarded as the main driver of ecosystem change. The effects of ecosystem resistance, resilience and pest management on snail population abundance are estimated for the short (5 years) and the long (30 years) term. Expert judgment was used to evaluate the impacts on selected ecosystem services in a worst-case scenario. Our study shows that the combined effects of apple snails are estimated to have profound effects on the ecosystem services provided by shallow, macrophyte-dominated ecosystems in Europe. This case study illustrates that quantitative estimates of environmental impacts from different IAS are feasible and useful for decision-makers and invasive species managers that have to balance costs of control efforts against environmental and economic impacts of invasive species.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • Large Energy Projects and Community Benefits Agreements - Some experience from the UK
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-04-04
    John Glasson

    Large projects are often controversial projects, with wide ranging implications for host localities. Energy projects, including windfarms, nuclear power stations, and the more recent cases of fracking and nuclear waste geological disposal, provide particularly high profile cases. In response to concern there has been the emergence of a whole family of new procedures, processes and methods for their assessment and management, including the advent of Community Benefit Agreements (CBAs). This article examines some of the critical issues around the increasing use of such agreements, including: their justification, relationship to the planning process, scale of benefits (which can be very large), types of benefits, and their management and distribution. The focus is on emerging UK practice in relation to energy projects, but there will also be reference to some relevant practice elsewhere—especially in the EU and North America.

    更新日期:2017-12-14
  • The impact of municipal budgets and land-use management on the hazardous waste production of Malaga municipalities
    Environ. Impact Assess. Rev. (IF 3.094) Pub Date : 2017-04-05
    Ismael P. Soler, German Gemar, Alberto Jimenez-Madrid

    Economic development and the search for competitiveness have become key issues in regions' economic success. However, despite the direct relationship between economic and environmental management, few land-use plans consider the latter aspect, and city managers delegate the responsibility for environmental impacts to state legislation and private initiatives. This myopic search for competitiveness has meant that a holistic view of environmental issues is often not integrated into municipal decision-making processes. Therefore, this study's objective was to determine the relevant direct and indirect relationships of land management and budgetary procedures of municipalities with overall production levels of hazardous waste. To this end, a primary tourist region, Málaga, was examined in terms of how this waste's environmental impacts can affect the region's vital tourism sector. This research used principal component analysis, regression by ordinary least squares, cluster analysis in two stages and a means test to compare the data for the Province of Malaga's subregions. The results confirm a positive relationship between municipal expenditure and waste production and highlight the environmental benefits of land use involving environmentally non-aggressive crops. The results also reveal a negative relationship between waste production and financial assets and a direct relationship between unproductive land and the production of hazardous waste. The findings also highlight the necessity of raising awareness about the need for collaboration between different agents, especially in the development of inter-municipal strategies.

    更新日期:2017-12-08
Some contents have been Reproduced with permission of the American Chemical Society.
Some contents have been Reproduced by permission of The Royal Society of Chemistry.
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