Governance Newsletter
Editor's Note May 2017

chandra_bhushanDear Friends,

I hope our newsletter is keeping you well updated about developments on environmental governance and helping you build informed opinion and decisions at your end.

In March this year, the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC) issued a notification, giving a one-time opportunity to project proponents operating without environment clearances to apply for the same within six months of the notification. While it is not ideal and fundamentally wrong to grant clearance after a project has started, the notification has laid down checks and balances to prevent misuse of the opportunity. This remains our top story of the issue.

MoEF&CC is also planning reforms to expedite forest clearances to projects. We are tracking the developments on these reforms and will keep you posted. In another significant development, the National Tiger Conservation Authority has issued an order to deny forest rights inside critical tiger habitats. The order has come under the scanner for its legality, and raises questions about the lack of political will to explore the possibility of co-existence of humans with wildlife.

On a brighter side, the solid waste management sector is seeing positive results in India, with commitment from a majority of states to segregate waste at source. However, equal emphasis is needed on decentralized waste processing and reuse, which can significantly reduce the costs of waste management and the need for large landfills.

At Centre for Science and Environment, we have drafted comprehensive guidelines for companies to report their performance on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). The guidelines have been developed to serve as a responsible and uniform reporting standard for all companies to improve accountability and transparency in CSR spending. We would appreciate your suggestions and feedback on these guidelines.

Also included in this newsletter are articles and updates on mining, forest governance, environment in courts, news and information on CSE’s training programmes. I would encourage you to participate in our training programmes and invite others too. I hope you will enjoy reading this issue of the newsletter and send your valuable feedback to us.
- Chandra Bhushan