Does the NCEA itself prepare ESIA and SEA reports for projects, plans, programmes or policies?

No. When requested, we give independent advice to competent authorities on the necessity of ESIA or SEA. We advice on scoping for ESIA or SEA and/or review the resulting reports. ESIA and SEA studies are carried out by consultancy companies.

Does the NCEA carry out independent reviews for all ESIAs and SEAs?

No. The size of our workforce is insufficient to advice on scoping for all ESIAs and SEAs or review the subsequent reports. Aside from our limited capacity, we do not want to take on the role of local EA authorities. Our assistance is limited to review ESIAs of controversial and complex projects. For SEA, the scope is mainly on regional plans and programmes and on sector strategies, for example national oil & gas development plans.

Does the NCEA prepare ESIA laws and regulations?

No. We review actual laws and regulations and can help you to evaluate their effectiveness. We can provide guidelines or check lists on how to improve the laws and regulations. If there are no environmental laws and regulations, governments have to ask special task forces or consultants to prepare a draft which we can then review.

Can the NCEA contribute to the realisation of an ESIA or a SEA?

No. We have no funds for this. In case you cannot provide funds yourself, you may contact environmental programmes of international development cooperation, development banks or environmental organisations, to see whether they have funds available.

To which standards will the NCEA refer and what if there are no standards?

First of all we will always look at national legislation and regulations applicable to the country in which the initiative takes place. Secondly, we refer to standard World Bank (and other development banks) guidelines and Operational Policies. When sector specific guidelines are available (e.g. for hydropower dams, from the International Commission on Large Dams or the World Commission on Dams) they will be referred to. Finally we use the advisory reports prepared by the NCEA for similar projects.

Does the NCEA provide training activities?

Yes. Within existing programmes or separately requested by eligible partners, the NCEA provides training sessions and workshops. We may provide training in collaboration with other institutes and/or consultants. The focus of our input is the link to EA components. For example:

  • ESIA/SEA procedure: screening, scoping, public participation, review
  • SEA introduction
  • SEA system development
  • ESIA/SEA related to sector/themes such as oil and gas.

The inclusion of members of local ministries or local experts in working groups is part of the on-the-job training. Furthermore, we also provide training-of-trainers.

Who pays for the independent review or capacity building support by the NCEA?

In countries eligible for Dutch development cooperation our ESIA/SEA assistance is free of charge to:

  • Competent authorities, if independent advice is required;
  • Government agencies, NGOs and academia requiring capacity development. 

In other cases, support may be given on a non-profit basis.