27 June 2017
SEA for water planning in Ethiopia
The Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity is the biggest sectoral ministry in Ethiopia. It makes many investments, and without adequate planning, environmental and social concerns are not always well accounted for. The Environment and Climate Change Directorate therefore plans to integrate SEA in the new water policy that is to be developed in the coming months. To get support for this idea, ECCD needs to raise awareness on the importance of SEA for water planning. Therefore it organised a 3-day SEA seminar for water policy makers, and asked the NCEA to facilitate it. The conclusion? The need for SEA is widely felt, and the new water policy will be formulated in an SEA inclusive process.
27 June 2017
Strengthening Zambia’s ESIA and SEA system
Zambia wants to strengthen its ESIA and SEA system. But how to do this? WWF Zambia and the Zambia Environmental Management Agency both asked the help of the NCEA in diagnosing needs and ways forward. An exploratory mission was carried out, looking into legal and technical aspects. Meetings took place with both parties separately but also jointly, and with multiple government stakeholders and CSOs. WWF Netherlands is now considering which of the resulting recommendations it will finance, as part of the Shared Resources, Joint Solutions programme.
27 June 2017
SEA for landscape approach in Burkina Faso and Mali
How can SEA help to achieve sustainable livelihoods in the White Volta basin in Burkina Faso? And how can it be applied to transboundary management by Mali and Burkina Faso of the Sourou river basin (north of the Black Volta)? With these questions in mind, a meeting took place between Burkinabe and Malinese authorities, NGOs and the NCEA (in the framework of the Shared Resources, Joint Solutions programme). Livelihoods in the White Volta basin are affected by a dam and mining, while management of the Black Volta is influenced by migration from conflict-ridden northern Mali. Both are complex situations in which SEA can contribute to application of the landscape approach to sustainable development.
27 June 2017
Article: capacity development on ESIA in Central Africa (PAANEEAC)
How can capacity for ESIA in developing countries be increased, and contribute to governance of investment decisions? In the past, research has shown that ‘donor-induced’ capacity development programmes often do not work. A new article, co-authored by three NCEA technical secretaries and published in the Journal of Developing Societies, explores the question with the PAANEEAC programme in mind. This programme (2008-2013), in which the NCEA acted as coach and technical advisor, has contributed to improvements in national ESIA systems in Central Africa. An important factor in its success, the article argues, was that PAANEEAC managed to create platforms where stakeholders met with the common objective to improve ESIA systems.
21 June 2017
Cartoons supporting stakeholder discussions on SEA for Delta plan Myanmar
A picture says more than a thousand words. This was certainly true for the cartoons made by two artists as part of the Integrated Ayeyarwady Delta Strategy and SEA process. During a series of workshops in June, to which the NCEA also contributed, these cartoons helped participants from various backgrounds to understand the planning process. This helps them to make more meaningful contributions to the process, ultimately leading to a better Strategy and SEA with greater ownership and acceptance from stakeholders.
21 June 2017
Stabilising Jamuna-Padma-Meghna river to reclaim land in Bangladesh
The Assam earthquake in 1950 caused the Jamuna-Padma-Meghna river to fill up with sediments. As a result, the river’s width has roughly doubled and a large amount of land is lost to the water. A River Stabilisation Plan is now being developed to secure the riverbanks from erosion and to reclaim land through river training works.
For a plan of this magnitude, a strategic environmental and social assessment (SESA) is of crucial importance. This SESA was initiated by the Asian Development Bank. It is a first-of-its-kind in Bangladesh and can become an example for future investments. The NCEA has been asked to review the SESA, and visited the study area.
13 June 2017
NCEA chairman Rudy Rabbinge receives Rachel Carson Award
Professor Rudy Rabbinge, chairman of the NCEA’s international department, has received the Rachel Carson Lifetime Achievement Award 2017. The jury explained that Professor Rabbinge’s vision on society as well as his academic contributions have a great impact on people and environment worldwide. He is the founder of production ecology, which combines a reduction of pesticide and fertilizer use with a significant yield increase. According to the judges, Professor Rabbinge’s work not only has important societal impact today, but also has great potential to help respond to agricultural challenges in the future.