EPD reports to ACE on recommendations of review on optimisation of EIAO process

     The Environmental Protection Department (EPD) has submitted a paper to the Advisory Council on the Environment (ACE) on the results of the review on the optimisation of the environmental impact assessment (EIA) process stipulated under the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (EIAO) for reporting at the ACE meeting on March 20.

     A spokesman for the EPD said today (February 27) that the department conducted a public engagement exercise from March to June last year to solicit views from stakeholders and members of the public on the overall approach and scope under the EIA process review. In addition to consulting the ACE, the EPD also held three online meetings with professional institutes, key project proponents and relevant organisations, and organised four online public forums.

     The spokesman said, "The views received during the public engagement exercise were generally positive and constructive. Taking into account the comments and suggestions collected, the EPD briefed the Legislative Council (LegCo) Panel on Environmental Affairs on the progress of the review on the EIA process on December 12 last year, and recommended four major enhancement initiatives, including establishing a Centralised Environmental Database (CED), updating the list of designated projects (DPs) under the EIAO, updating the requirements for technical assessments, and facilitating direct application for environmental permit. The CED was officially launched on December 19 last year and is open to project proponents, consultants and the public for viewing."

     After soliciting comments from the ACE, the EPD will submit the proposed amendments of DPs lists under the EIAO and the revised Technical Memorandum on Environmental Impact Assessment Process (EIAO-TM) to the LegCo in the second quarter of 2023 for negative vetting. Moreover, the EPD will arrange workshops to introduce the CED and explain to stakeholders and relevant professional bodies the revised assessment methodology related to the EIAO-TM.

     The paper submitted by the EPD to the ACE has been uploaded to the following websites for public viewing:

     The ACE website: www.eeb.gov.hk/en/boards_committees/advisory_council/ace-meetings-2023.html
     The EPD's EIAO website: www.epd.gov.hk/eia

Ends/Monday, February 27, 2023
Issued at HKT 15:00