Ghana

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EIA profile

Updated to: 25 February 2015

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EIA background

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Country contact on EIA

Contact details for the country contact on EIA.

Environmental Protection Agency
P.O. Box, M326
Location: 91 Starlets Road
Accra, Ghana
Tel: (233-21) 664697/8, 667524, 663499, 662465
Fax: 233-21-662690
Email: epaed@africaonline.com.gh, support@epaghana.org

History of EIA

Brief description of the history of the EIA system in the country, including when it was introduced and any major milestones in its development.

In 1973, the Environmental Protection Council was established in Ghana. It was the first governing body on environmental management in Africa. In 1985 the Investment Code included a requirement for EIA. In the following years, EIAs were conducted voluntarily. In 1994, Ghana enacted the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Act, which established EIA legally. The EPA then became the main EIA authority. The EPA published and formally launched the EIA procedures of Ghana in July 1995. These regulations were amended in 1999 and 2002. As part of the Ghana Environmental Assessment Capacity Development Programme, environmental assessment sector-specific guidelines have been developed for eight sectors.

Year of introduction of EIA legislation

NB: this field is only meant for the world map. It is a hidden cell that is not published on the website. If available, mention the year when detailed national EIA regulations were issued. If such regulations do not exist and if EIA practice is base

1994

Legal framework for EIA

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Framework/Enabling law

Name of first enabling legislation that sets a framework for EIA.

Environmental Protection Act

Approving authority of enabling law

Authority that approved the enabling law for EIA.

Parliament and the President.

First national detailed regulation for EIA

First national detailed regulation (procedural requirements) through which EIA was operationalized.

The EPA published EIA procedures in 1995. In 1999, the Environmental Assessment Regulations (LI 1652) were promulgated, providing a detailed legal basis for the previously published EIA procedures.

Approving authority of first national detailed regulation for EIA

The authority that approved the first national detailed regulation (procedural requirements) through which EIA was operationalized.

The EA regulations were approved by the Minister responsible for the environment.

Recent updates and additions to the EIA legislation

Revisions of the EIA provisions in the enabling law or the national detailed EIA regulation (procedural requirements) are named. The year is listed, and the main changes since the first regulation are mentioned, if available. Also, additional EIA-re

In 2002, the EA regulations of 1999 have been amended (LI 1703) on fees and charges for processing the EIA applications.The EIA regulations are currently being reviewed (in 2013).

Guidelines

Any government issued guidelines on EIA (general, or sectoral) are listed here, as well as the authority that issued each. Describe the legal status of the guidelines.

  • Ghana EIA procedures issued by the EPA  in 1995 provide guidance for project types, holding of public forums, EIA review, permits and post certification monitoring
  • The EPA has issued:  EIA in Ghana; a guide, 1996.
  • Ghana's mining and environment guidelines, 1994, also contain instructions for EIA
  • Forestry and wood sector EIA guidelines have been issued in 2002.
  • In 2012, 7 sector specific EA guidelines have been developed to facilitate the conduct of EIA for the following sectors: tourism, energy (volume 1 and volume 2), health, manufacturing industry, transportation industry, agriculture and general construction. Also, EIA guidelines have been drafted for the mining sector. They still need to be accepted by stakeholders before they will also be published.
  • Public consultation guidance has been drafted in 2013.

Objective of EIA

The objective of EIA as stated in the above described legal basis.

The regulation states that the goal of EIA is achieving sustainable development and fulfilling the objectives of international agreements.

Scope of EIA application

Describes which types of activities require EIA (public and/or private activities; national and/or foreign initiated project; or all such projects)

EPA may request a full EIA for any activity which has the potential to cause significant impacts on the environment. This applies to governmental and private projects, as well as to national and foreign projects.

Schedule 1 and 2 of the Environmental Assessment Regulations provides a list of projects requiring some form/level of assessment. Schedule 1 projects are required to register and obtain an environmental permit. Schedule 2 projects are required to undertake a full EIA before an environmental permit is issued by the EPA

Exemptions from EIA application

Describes any (groups of) activities identified in the regulation that are exempted from the requirement to do EIA (e.g. military or emergency activities).

No specified

Institutional setting for EIA

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Central EIA authority

Is there a central authority in charge of implementing EIA? Is it independent or linked to a higher body (e.g ministry)? What are its tasks related to EIA?

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates both EIA and environmental permitting. The function of the EPA with respect to EIA is, as determined in the Environmental Protection Agency Act 490 i of 1994: “To ensure compliance with any laid down environmental impact assessment procedures in the planning and execution of development projects, including compliance in respect of existing projects”.

The Environmental Protection Council (EPC) was established in 1974 and was changed into the EPA in 1994 through the Environmental Protection Act, which also established the legal framework for EIA.

The EPA head quarter in Accra consists of several divisions, which are further sub-divided into departments. The Environmental Assessment and Audit Department of the Environmental Compliance and Enforcement division is mainly responsible for those EIA – related functions.

Other key (governmental) parties involved in EIA, and their roles

Lists other key parties (e.g. a review commission, knowledge institute) that have a role in many or all EIAs.

Cross-sectoral EIA Technical Review Committees are set up at national level and in all the 10 regions to support the EPA in the EIA process.

Mandate for exemption of EIA obligation

Describes if there is a legal mandate for a competent authority to make exemptions of EIA obligation. And if yes, under which conditions (e.g. national security, disasters or no conditions/when deemed necessary).

Not specified

(De)centralisation of EIA mandates

Describes if EIA mandates are (de)centralised. Vertical decentralization refers to the extent to which the responsibility for EIA processes are delegated by the central government to the provincial or local authorities. Sectoral or horizontal decen

EPA has 10 regional EPA offices which serve as field operators of the Agency. In relation to EIA, they have the mandate at regional level for screening and regional review of EIA's (eg. Accra municipal EPA receives around 250 applications per year of which around 10% require full EIA). There are cross-sectoral EIA Technical Review Committees set up in all the 10 regions to support the EPA offices in screening and reviewing of EA applications and reports. The committees make recommendations after the review and submit it to the headquarters for quality assurance and approval. Permit schedules are prepared and approved at national level. Regional EPAs also have a role in compliance monitoring, approval of annual environmental reports and verification of environmental management plans. EIAs for large-scale projects and high priority projects are under the responsibility of the Environmental Assessment and Audit Department of the EPA though. Regional EPA offices are then mainly involved in the EIA process through public participation and monitoring activities.

For several sectors, the Environmental Assessment and Audit department discharges its functions by liaising with other divisions within the EPA.

EIA procedure

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Overview EIA procedure

Characterizes the overall EIA procedure. If relevant, interesting aspects of the EIA procedure are mentioned such as: which procedural steps are part of the EIA procedure? How are they linked to each other? Are there different levels of assessment di

As a first step of the EIA procedure in Ghana, a screening decision has to be taken on whether no environmental assessment, a preliminary environmental assessment of a full environmental assessment is necessary to obtain an environmental permit. Thereafter, scoping is required which results in a scoping report. The assessment process, the review of the draft of the EIA report and the decision-making process on the issuance of the environmental permit follow. Compliance monitoring is being conducted after the permit has been issued. 24 months after the issuance of the permit the provisional environmental permit is replaced by an environmental certificate, if the permit conditions have been complied with. Public participation is required during the screening, scoping, assessment and the review stage.

Documents that play an important role during the EIA process are the following: EIA registration document (screening), screening report, possibly Preliminary Environmental Report (screening), scoping report (incl. Terms of Reference), EIS, review report, enviornmental permit, EMP, Annual Environmental Report(s), Environmental Certificate.

Screening

Screening requirement and authority

Describes if a formal screening decision required, and if so, which authority is responsible for this decision. Is this decision published?

Screening is a required step in the Ghanaian EIA procedures. The EPA makes the screening decision with the assistance of a cross sectoral technical review committee particularly for schedule 1 projects.

Screening process

Describes the screening process: steps in screening, the stakeholders involved and outcomes of the process, status of screening advice of different stakeholders, etc. Also describes any prescribed methods for screening. If preliminary EIA's / light EIA's / Initial Environmental Evaluations (IEE) are done in this country and which criteria determine whether a preliminary or a full EIA is requested

The Environmental Assessment Regulations (1999) contain positive lists that specify the projects subject to EIA. Schedule I of the regulation lists the activities that require registration and an environmental permit, and may also require a preliminary or a full EIA. The list specifies minimum thresholds. Schedule II lists the activities that require a full EIA, this list also specifies minimum thresholds. EPA may request a full EIA after review of the preliminary EIA. EPA can also request a full EIA for any activity that is not listed.

A proponent has to submit a registration form or environmental screening form to the EPA for all activities listed in Schedule I and II. The EPA then decides on the need for further study of the activities and on the level of detail of the study. For Schedule I activities, EPA may request a preliminary or full EIA, it may also request a full EIA after review of the preliminary EIA. For all activities in Schedule II the EPA will require a full EIA. Furthermore, the EPA may accept the proposed activities directly if no EIA is deemed necessary, or reject proposed activities outright. The screening decision is issued in a report.

Provision for sensitive areas

Are specific requirements formulated for environmentally sensitive areas? (e.g. no minimum thresholds, full EIA instead of partial EIA)

Schedule V of the EIA regulation defines environmentally sensitive areas. This list has been substituted in 2006 by a list of 8 types of Environmentally Sensitive Areas. All activities in these areas require an EIA.

Contents of the starting document

Describes the required content of the starting document (if any) that the proponent should submit to the competent authority for EIA screening. Mentions if the starting document is published.

The EPA has developed an online system for proponents to submit application for EIAs. The screening documentation submitted by the proponent should contain information on:

  • Details on the proposed activity (including a description of waste generation);
  • The proposed location ( location, zoning, site description, land cover and topography);
  • Infrastructure and utilities;
  • Environmental impacts (air quality, biological resources, cultural resources, water quality and hydrology, noise, other impacts);
  • Health and safety impacts;
  • Management of impacts (air quality, biological resources, cultural resources, water quality and hydrology, noise others);
  • Alternatives to the establishment of the activity;
  • List of stakeholders consulted (including evidence).

The preliminary EIA should complement the information already submitted in the screening document, in particular, it should contain a more detailed description of the effects on the environment.
 

Timeline Screening

Maximum number of (working) days allowed between submission of the starting document and the screening decision.

EPA makes the screening decision within a maximum of 25 days.

Scoping

Scoping requirement

Is a formal scoping step required as part of the EIA process?

Scoping is a required step, resulting in an approved Terms of Reference for the EIA.

Scoping process

Describes who carries main responsibility to undertake scoping and what the roles and responsibilities of the involved parties during the process are. Specifically, is there independent formulation and/or review of the scoping document, approval of the scoping document? Are any methods prescribed, e.g. participation, checklists. What guidance is provided?

The proponent has to produce a scoping report, which includes a Terms of Reference for the EIA. During scoping, the proponent should consult with affected parties. Furthermore, the proponent should also give notice of the proposed undertaking to the relevant Ministries, government departments and organisations and the relevant Metropolitan, Municipal or District Assembly. The scoping report is made available for the general public. The EPA reviews the Scoping report with the help of a Technical Review Committee and has to approve the report before the EIA can proceed.

Contents of the scoping document

Explains if there are there specific requirements for the content of the scoping document, and if so, what these are.

The scoping report contains a description of any issues raised during the consultation process, and how these will be addressed in the EIA. The scoping document should contain a draft Terms of Reference. The EIA regulation stipulates that this ToR contain:

  • a description of the activity;
  • the need for the activity;
  • alternatives (including a 'no-build' alternative, and site-alternatives);
  • site selection;
  • the current environmental, social and economic situation;
  • potential impacts;
  • the potential impact on health;
  • mitigation measures;
  • monitoring;
  • contingency plans;
  • public consultation;
  • illustrative materials;
  • an Environmental Management Plan;
  • financial compensation for possible damage; and
  • transboundary impacts.

 

Timeline scoping

Number of (working) days for the decision on approval of the scoping document by the competent authority.

The EPA reviews the Terms of Reference within 25 days.

Assessment and reporting

Assessment process

Steps and roles of stakeholders in the assessment and status of the input of the stakeholders. Also sets out methods for assessment of the environmental impacts of the activity, if prescribed, and whether the assessment covers environmental, social, economic and/or transboundary effects.

There are no methodological requirements, but the regulation does require that the assessment covers potential positive and negative impacts on environmental, social, economic and cultural aspects and in relation to the different phases of development of the activity and transboundary impacts.

Contents of the EIA report

Explains what should be contained in the EIA report. Specifies if a potential Environmental Management Plan is part of the EIA report or if it is a separate document that contributes to the EIA process.

The EIA report has to contain information on direct and indirect impacts of the undertaking on the environment at the pre-construction, construction, operation, decommissioning and post-decommissioning phases, including:

  • Concentrations of pollutants in the environment;
  • Direct ecological changes;
  • Alteration in the ecological processes;
  • Consequences such as direct destruction of existing habitats;
  • Noise and vibration levels;
  • Odour;
  • Traffic generation and potential increase of road accidents;
  • Changes in social, cultural and economic patterns;
  • Health impact;
  • If relevant, reclamation plans (for extractive industry and mining)

The Environmental Assessment reports (both preliminary EIA and EIA report) are required to be easily understandable and must contain a non-technical summary.

Review

Review process

Overview of the review process, including: steps in the process and roles of the stakeholders, status of the input of the stakeholders. Is the process open to public? Review method: internal review, external review, panel/commission (permanent or temporary), are the review results documented? Are the review criteria general or case by case? Are the review results documented? Is a potential review

The EIS draft report is reviewed by the EPA, assisted by cross-sectoral technical committees at the regional and at the national level. EPA uses an 'instructions for reviewing EIA reports' document. The review should result in a summary of strengths and weaknesses of the report, needs for further study (if any), any impact monitoring required and any terms and conditions that should apply if approval is granted.

The EPA and Committee make the decision whether a revision of the EIA report is required or whether approval can be issued by the EPA. Then the EIA report may be finalized.

 

Review expertise

Describes if the EIA is checked by external parties, and if so to what extent these represent required disciplines/expertise. Also sets out if measures have been taken to ensure that reviewers are impartial?

Through the review committee relevant expertise from within government (e.g. officials of the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and other government agencies) can be involved in review. In certain cases the EPA may request for review support from external/international accredited EIA institutions in the review of EIA reports.

Timeline Review

Number of (working) days for review of the EIA by the competent authority.

The draft EIA report is reviewed in a maximum of 50 days.

Decision-making

Integration of EIA into decision-making

Describes what kind of decision-making processes the EIA is intended to support. We look specifically at the decision on EIA approval, and how this relates to envirionmental approval for the project, and other project approval decisions (permits) needed before a project can proceed. This category describes which decisions are influenced by EIA and how they are linked to each other.

In Ghana, EIA is linked to the environmental permitting system. The decision on the environmental permit is made by the EPA and should be based on the preliminary EIA or full EIA. There is no detailed information available in the regulations on the considerations/criteria on which this environmental permit decision is based. There are, however, specific criteria for reviewing EIA reports, which can lead to three decisions: EIS is acceptable and permit is recommended, revision required or additional information required. There is thus limited separation between the EIA report approval decision and the decision on the issuance of the environmental permit.

To ensure compliance with the environmental permit, the permit is linked to an environmental certificate. The environmental permit is seen as a provisional license, which needs to be replaced by an environmental certificate.

EIA is also linked to the planning permit process, water abstraction and use permits, Energy Commission Permits and National Petroleum Licenses, Mining licenses etc.    

Competent authority

Describes which authority/authorities is/are responsible for each of the main decision-making processes on EIA (EIA approval, environmental approval and/or project approval). It is explained if those decisions are taken by the same or different authorities.

The EPA is the competent authority for all consent decisions in the EIA process. The Agency takes the decision on the EIA report approval, but also on the environmental permit decision. In general, the Executive Director of the EPA is responsible for the decision on the environmental permit and its conditions. He can, however, delegate his mandate to the director of the Environmental Assessment and Audit department. Finally, the decision on the issuance of an environmental certificate is also taken by the EPA.

Decision documents

Mentions if the decision (on EIA approval and/or environmental approval) is linked to certain documents (e.g. environmental management plan, permit conditions) in order to facilitate the management of environmental risks during project implementation. Also describes if commitments of the proponent are incorporated into legally binding instruments.

The environmental permit comes with conditions. These are strongly based on the statements made in the EIA report and the EMP.

Decision justification

Sets out requirements for justification of the consideration of the EIA information in decision-making (on EIA approval, environmental approval and/or project approval).

Not specified

Decision publication

Does the decision (on EIA approval, environmental approval and/or project approval) have to be published? Also, is the decision justification published as well?

The EPA publishes a notice for every environmental permit that has been issued. This is done within 3 months of the date of the issuance of the permit.

Timeline decision-making

Maximum number of (working) days available to the competent authority to make the EIA based decision (EIA approval, environmental clearance and/or project approval).

After finalization of the EIA report the Environmental Permit should be issued within a maximum of 15 days. The whole application process should not take more than 90 days (at the responsible agencies' part). This timeline does not apply when public hearings are held or where only a preliminary EIA is required. Nor does it apply to the period taken to prepare and submit an EIA report. 
 

Monitoring, Compliance and Enforcement

Compliance monitoring

Is compliance monitoring required to check if the project is implemented as described in the EIA documents and/or if mitigation of environmental impacts complies with applicable standards and other measures set out in the EIA documents? Who is responsible for ensuring compliance? How does this authority ensure compliance (for example, through inspections)? And what requirements are there for the p

Monitoring is required. The EPA has established Field Offices and headoffice departments that undertake compliance monitoring, evaluation and enforcement of conditions.

The monitoring regimes and parameters are defined in permitting schedules on a case by case basis. Firstly self-compliance is expected from the proponent. In general, the proponent is required to submit a (provisional) Environmental Management Plan to the EPA within 18 months of the commencement of the activities and thereafter every three years. The Environmental Management Plan shall set out steps that are intended to manage any significant impacts that may result from the operation of the undertaking. Moreover, an Annual Environmental Report should be submitted to the EPA after 12 months and every 12 months thereafter. These deliverables have to be approved by the EPA.

Within 24 months after commencing the activity, the proponent should send evidence to the EPA that the activity is in line with the conditions written in the EIA. The proponent then obtains an Environmental Certificate, if the first Annual Environmental Report has been submitted.

External monitoring

Are there monitoring requirements that involve external parties, such as citizen monitoring (for example, through a complaints procedure), or third party auditing?

There are no legal provisions for external monitoring. However, this has been prescribed for certain complex projects such as the West African Gas Pipeline Project.
 

Non-compliance penalties

Are there penalties that the authority responsible for compliance can apply if environmental conditions are not met? What are these? (for example, fines, suspension of license)

The EPA may revoke an environmental permit / environmental certificate if the holder of the environmental permit / environmental certificate

  • fails to obtain any other required authorization in relation to his undertaking before the commencement of operation;
  • is in breach of any provision of any regulations relating to EIA;
  • fails to make the required payments addressed in the EIA regulations on the due date;
  • acts in breach of any conditions to which his environmental permit or environmental certificate is subject; or
  • fails to comply with the mitigations commitments in his EIS or Environmental Management Plan

Furthermore, the EPA may suspend an environmental permit or environmental certificate if fundamental changes in the environment occur due to natural causes before or during the project implementation. Complaints of aggrieved people can further trigger the suspension of an environmental permit or environmental certificate.

EIA evaluation

Are there any requirements to monitor if the impacts in reality are as they were predicted in the EIA, with the purpose of evaluating the EIA itself and improving future EIA practice?

There are no legal provisions for incorporating experiences and lessons learned during the EIA process into existing processes.

Payment system

Is the proponent required to pay a fee when applying for an EIA? Is this fee linked to a permitting fee, or separate? If yes, when is this paid and to whom (to the agency that issues the license or to a central agency)?

The Environmental Assessment Regulations LI 1652 (1999) stipulate that the proponent should pay for the application for the environmental permit and for the environmental certificate. Amendment 1703 presents the details of the payment system for EIA.  Proponents are required to pay non refundable processing fees upon submission of environmental assessment applications. Upon approval of the application the proponent is then invoiced to pay a permit fee.

Public participation

Public participation requirements for EIA process stages

Describes for which of the EIA process stages public participation is required.

Public concerns are key criteria for the screening decision (LI 1652). For a full EIA, the affected and interested parties should be consulted at every stage of the EIA process. The public may make comments on the scoping report, make field visits, may comment on the draft EIA report and, if a public hearing is deemed necessary, be involved in the public hearing.

Public participation arrangements

Relevant information regarding the arrangements for public participation are provided here (e.g. who is responsible for it, who is consulted, does the legislation mention consultation or participation, for which project should consultations be held, are public hearings held etc.)

During scoping, the Proponent is directed to advertise the project in at least one national newspaper and a local newspaper. The proponent should consult with affected parties. The public may also express their view to the managing director of the proposed activity and the executive director of EPA.

In the course of gathering data for the assessment, a public information program has to be initiated by the proponent aiming to fully inform the local residents about the potential impacts of the undertaking.

The draft EIS is has to be published for 21 days so that the public can express their concerns. During the review process, EPA can decide to hold a public hearing in the following cases:

  • The expected environmental impacts are considered extensive and far reaching;
  • There is great adverse public reaction to a proposal; and/or
  • There will be relocation or dislocation of communities.

The EPA will then appoint a panel of three to five persons to gather information on the public concerns and how these could be addressed. At least two-thirds of the panel members must be residents of the geographic area where the activity will be undertaken.

The stakeholders to be involved are: the general public, relevant public agencies, organizations, NGOs, Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies and local communities.

 

EIA regulations 1999

Public participation guidance

Has any guidance on participation been provided?

A draft for public consultation guidance has been completed in 2013.

Access to information

Which of the information that is generated in the EIA process is available to the public? Specifically, which reports and decision statements?

The intention of the proponent to initiate the proposed activity, the scoping report, the (draft) EIA and the decision of the EPA on the environmental permit, should all be available to the public.

Information dissemination

How can the public receive the information that is publicly available? Are there public announcement on the proceedings? How/where are these published? Is information made available locally? Is information sent on request? etc.

When a full EIA report has been prepared, the proponent publishes a notice for at least 21 days in at least a national and a local newspaper. No specific language requirements are made in the regulations for reporting but consultation is conducted in the local language.

The decision on the environmental permit is published in the Gazette and through mass media.

Timeline for public comments

The number of (working) days available for the public to make comments on the EIA decision document.

A 21 day period for public disclosure is required. In case a public hearing is held, the panel shall make recommendations in writing to the EPA within a period of not less than 15 days from the date it starts hearing representations.

Costs for public

Are there any specified costs public parties will incur if they partake in EIA?(e.g. costs for the receiving report, costs of losing an appeal, etc. Costs associated with travel to meetings or such are not included here)

Not specified. The costs for any notices on public participation shall be borne by the proponent

Public comments

What options do the public have to provide their comments. Should comments be written, or may they also be verbal? To which agency should they provide their submissions?

Not specified

Public comments in decision-making

Do the EIA and/or project approval decisions have to be justified on the basis of public participation results? Do legal texts indicate how public participation results should be used and to which decision-making processses they should contribute?

Not specified

Legal recourse

Possibilities for appeal

What are the legal recourse options to challenge EIA decisions are provided for within the legal framework?

A person aggrieved by a decision or action of the EPA may submit a complaint in writing to the Minister within 14 days. As an "aggrieved person" is not further defined in the regulations LI 1652, this could mean the proponent, the public/non-governmental organizations or private parties. This implies that:

  • When a proponent is dissatisfied with an unfavorable decision by the EPA at any stage of the process, there is a right of appeal. The Minister responsible for environment appoints a board to hear the appeal and take a final decision on the proposed undertaking.
  • In cases where a public hearing is held because adverse public reaction appeared upon a notice of the draft EIA, the public also has the right to submit a complaint against the decision by the EPA to issue an Environmental Permit.

 

Decisions that can be appealed

Which EIA decisions can be appealed?

Any decision by EPA

Who can appeal

Who can make an appeal (in other words, has legal standing)?

Any party who feels aggrieved

EIA practice

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Annual no. of EIAs

Gives an estimation for the number of full EIAs that are produced annually in this country.

Applications for permits and certificates increased from 515 in 2002 to 1555 in 2005 and to 2105 in 2008. Estimated no of full EIAs per year is about 50

Central EIA database

Is there a central database or library where information on EIAs is kept (i.e. where all EIAs are registered and/or copies are archived). If so, what is kept there and is this information publicly accessible?

There is no EIA database, but first steps have been taken in the framework of the decentralization to have on-line application forms, computerization of the EIA permitting system in every region.

Copies of all EISs are kept in the EPA library.

 

Practice reviews

Any EIA practice review studies that have been done (by governmental agencies or others) are listed here. Where relevant, links to studies are included, and the main conclusions of the studies are summarised.

Several studies have taken place that have looked specifically at EIA practice and regulation in Ghana:

  • EIA in developing countries: the case of Ghana, by S. Appiah-Opoku. In EIA Review 21 (2001) 59-71.
  • UNECA 's EIA review of Ghana, 2004
  • Review of EIA in selected African countries, Economic Commission of Africa, 2005.
  • Ghana: country environmental analysis, World Bank, 2006.
  • Piloting the Use of Ghanaian systems to address environmental issues in the proposed world Bank-Assisted Ghana Energy Development and Access Project; safeguards diagnostic review, The World Bank 2006.
  • Sonderegger G., 2012. Explaining EIA performance in the water sector in Ghana. The role of capacities of the main actors. Master Thesis, University of Utrecht.
  • Van der Leest B., 2012. EIA system performance explained by actor capacities. A comparative study of EIA on gold mining in Ghana. Master Thesis, University of Utrecht.
  • Betey C.B. & Godfred E., 2013. Environmental Impact Assessment and Sustainable Development in Africa: A critical review. Environment and Natural Resources Research. Vol 3 No. 2, 37-51.

Accreditation of consultants

Is there and accreditation system operational in the country to certify consultants to do EIAs?

There is no accredicted system to certify consultants. The EPA has a list of all consultants trained by the Agency.

There is the so-called Akoben initiative, which refers to an initiative which aims to improve the monitoring system following the EIA, rating companies on their environmental performance to implement the environmental management system (EMS) and making this information available on a publicly available website. This innovative approach is expected to improve compliance. The software has been developed by a consultant and has been subject of a public review. It is now being installed by EPA for wide application. More information on the AKOBEN programme can be found here.

Professional bodies

Professional bodies relevant to EIA practice in the country, such as EIA Associations, Environmental Expert Associations, etc are listed here.

The local affiliate of the International Association of Impact Assessment was formed in 1997 and formally registered in 1999. Is has a membership of over 80 with 25 members actively involved with its activities.  

Non-governmental EIA guidance

Lists any EIA manuals and good practice publications (including checklists, case studies) that have been published by parties other than government.

No information 

Capacity development

Ongoing training programmes (including professional and academic training) and major training events held in the past (with focus on recent events) are mentioned here.

In order to improve and strenghthen EIA and SEA, EPA undertook the Ghana Environmental Assessment Capacity Development Project (GEACaP) Phase I 1999-2001. As a follow-up the Ghana Environmental Assessment Support project was implemented from 2006-2008, with the final goal to “use Environmental Assessment (EA) as an effective instrument to achieve sustainable growth, development and poverty reduction” in relation to the National Development Policy Framework and the Millennium Development Goals (MDG), World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) recommendations (Johannesburg Plan of Implementation) and NEPAD (New Partnership for Africa’s Development).

Periodic training workshops have been organized for various groups at the EPA Training School.

In 2008, the NCEA has conducted an EIA mapping exercise in Ghana to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the EIA system.

EIA links

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Links to laws/regulation

Any relevant links to laws or regulations are included here.

Other relevant links on EIA

Any other relevant links (for example to country specific guidance documents) are included here.