Ecological Impact Assessment; Conceptual Approach for Better Outcomes

Document Type: Original Research Paper

Authors

1 Department of Environmental Science, Faculty of Science, Silpakorn University, Nakorn Pathom, Thailand

2 Monitoring and Evaluation Office, Thailand Greenhouse Gas Management Organization (Public Organization), Bangkok , Thailand

Abstract

This study aims at evaluating the completeness of the content of the ecological part in
Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) and Environmental Impact Statements (EISs) on content review
basis. The requirements of the ecological content as stated in the of five sets of Thai’s EIA guidelines, namely
the specific guidelines for power plants, industrial projects, dams and harbors and the general guideline are
used as the basis for this research. The main findings are that the requirements of the content of the ecological
part in the guidelines differ from one guideline to another and the most different one is the specific guideline
for dam projects. Generally, ecosystem, habitat and species population are presented. The guideline specifies
the requirements for data presentation more clearly than those for ecological impact assessment. In addition,
thirty EISs of power plant projects are systematically reviewed and it is found that there are a number of
improper practices of ecological impact assessment process including insufficient baseline study, inconsistent
impact interpretation, and ignorance of ecological point of view in setting up mitigation measures and monitoring
programs. Ecological content in EIA guidelines and EISs can be shown in a logical sequence of events in order
to form an effective system of ecological impact assessment.

Keywords