Environmental impacts of mining: to identify and evaluate environmental impact assessment regulations and environmental management systems

A mine project may cause extensive environmental damage, and as a result of several recent accidents connected to mining the mining industry has been given a lot of attention in an environmental context. Two of the most important tools for the environmental work are the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), which is a legal requirement, and the voluntary tool Environmental Management System (EMS). In this thesis the application of the two environmental tools have been studied in two European countries, Romania and Sweden, with a focus on the mining industry. Sweden is a member of the European Union (EU) and Romania has applied for a membership.

Despite EIA being demanded by law in most countries there are no general definitions of the processes or the report. Member countries of the EU must implement the EC Directive on EIA, but countries which are not members have their own legislation concerning EIA. Member countries can also choose different ways of applying the directive on national level. The result is that the environmental legislation is different from country to country in Europe. The differences between Romania and Sweden are however not as large in the requirements of the laws as in the practice of it. The different traditions of the countries and Romania being in a period of transition from national law to EU law are probably among the largest reasons for the differences.

Author: Persson, Jennie

Source: LuleƄ University of Technology

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