Environment Protection Act, 2053 (1997)


Published: 1997

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Environment Protection Act, 2053 (1997) 1
Environment Protection Act, 2053 (1997)
Royal seal and date of publication
17 Magh 2053 (jan.30. 1997)

Act No 24 of the year 2053 (1997)
An Act Made to Provide for the Protection of Environment
Preamble :Whereas, it is expedient to make legal provisions in order to maintain clean
and healthy environment by minimizing, as far as posible, adverse impacts likely to be
caused from environmental degradation on human beings, wildlife, plants, nature and
physical objects; and to protect environment with proper use and management of
natural resources, taking into consideration that sustainable development could be
achieved from the inseparable inter-relationship betwe n the economic development
and environment protection;
Now, therefore, Parliament has made this Act in the tw nty fifty year of the reign of
His Majesty King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev.
1. Short Title and Commencement : (1) This Act may be called as the
Environment Protection Act, 2053 (1997 A.D.).
(2) This Act shall commence on such date, as Governm nt of
Nepal may, by a notification in the Nepal Gazette, appoint. ♣
2. Definitions : Unless the subject or context otherwise requires, in this Act;
(a) "Environment" means the interaction and inter-relationship among
the components of natural, cultural and social system , economic
and human activities and their components.
♣ Commenced from June 24, 1997 by the Notification published in Nepal Gazette on June 24, 19977.
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(b) "Pollution" means the activities that significantly degrade, damage
the environment or harm on the beneficial or useful purpose of the
environment, by changing the environment, directly or indirectly.
(c) "Protection" means the safety care maintenance, promotion,
management and proper utilization of the environment a d
national heritage.
(d) "Proposal" means a proposal prepared in regard to the carrying out
of such development work, physical activity that may bring about
change in the existing environmental conditions or any plan,
project or program which changes the land uses
(e) "Proponent" means a person, governmental, semi-governmental or
non-governmental agency or institution applying for approval of a
proposal and getting approval for the implementation of such a
proposal.
(f) "Initial Environmental Examination" means a report n analytical
study or evaluation to be prepared to ascertain as to whether, in
implementing a proposal, the proposal does have significant
adverse impacts on the environment or not, whether such impacts
could be avoided or mitigated by any means or not.
(g) "Environmental Impact Assessment" means a report on detailed
study and evaluation to be prepared to ascertain as to whether, in
implementing a proposal, the proposal does have significant
adverse impacts on the environment or not, whether such impacts
could be avoided or mitigated by any means or not.
(h) "Wastes" means the liquid, solid, gas, slurry, smoke, dust, radiated
element or substance or similar other materials disposed in a
manner to degrade the environment.
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(i) "Disposal" means the act of emission, storage, or disposal of
sound, heat or wastes.
(j) "Biological Diversity" means ecosystem diversity, species
diversity and genetic diversity.
(k) "National Heritage" means any such object, site, plant and animal
related with the environment available within Nepal as is likely to
be important to the human being from natural, cultura , historical
archaeological, scientific, spiritual, aesthetic or social point of
view.
(l) "Ministry" means the Ministry of Population and Environment of
Government of Nepal .
(m) "Prescribed" or "As prescribed" means prescribed or as prescribed
in the rules framed under this Act.
3. To carry Out Initial Environmental Examination or Environmental
Impact Assessment: A proponent shall have to carry out Initial
Environmental Examination and Environmental Impact Assessment of the
proposals as prescribed.
4. Prohibition on Implementation of Proposal Without Approval :
Upon the commencement of this Act, no one shall impe ent or cause to be
implemented a proposal without getting it approved from the concerned
agency or the Ministry.
5. To submit Proposal for Approval : A proponent who is desirous of
implementing any proposal shall have to submit such a proposal,
accompanied by the report on Initial Environmental Examination or
Environmental Impact Assessment of the proposal, to the concerned agency
for the approval of such a proposal.
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6. Approval for Implementation of a Proposal May be Given : (1) On
receipt of any proposal pursuant to Section 5, and while examining the
Initial Environmental Examination or Environmental Impact Assessment
report submitted with a proposal, if such a proposal does not appear to have
significant adverse impacts on the environment, the concerned agency shall
itself grant approval in respect of the proposal with the Initial
Environmental Examination, and shall forward the proposal along with its
opinion thereon to the Ministry, in respect of the Environmental Impact
Assessment report.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in Sub-section (1), in
case, while examining the Initial Environmental Examination report of the
proposal, it is found necessary also to carry out Environmental Impact
Assessment of such a proposal, the concerned agency may issue order to
carry out Environmental Impact Assessment of proposal, In case any
proponent, after having assessed environmental impacts pursuant to the
order so issued by the concerned agency, submits an Environmental Impact
assessment report for approval, the concerned agency shall carry our
necessary examination of such a proposal and forward the proposal along
with its opinion to the Ministry.
(3) In the event of receipt of the Environmental Impact
Assessment report with any proposal pursuant to Sub-section (1) or (2), the
Ministry shall arrange so that all the general public may copy the report, by
oneself, to render opinions and suggestions on the report.
(4) The Ministry may form a committee comprising also of
experts of the concerned agencies to render opinions and suggestions on the
Environmental Impact Assessment report received along with the proposal
pursuant to Sub-section (1) or (2).
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(5) If, on the basis of opinions and suggestions, if any, rendered
by the general public and also opinions and suggestions rendered by the
Committee, if any, formed pursuant to Sub-section (4), on the
Environmental Impact Assessment report received pursuant to Sub-section
(1) or (2), it does not appear that such a proposal m y have significant
adverse impacts on the environment, the Ministry shall grant approval to
the proponent to implement such a proposal.
(6) Notwithstanding any thing contained in Sub-section (1) or
(5), in case it appears form the Initial Environmental Examination or
Environmental Impact Assessment report that significant adverse impacts
to be caused on the environment while implementing the proposal can be
mitigated or controlled, the concerned agency or Ministry may grant
approval, with prescription of necessary terms, to the proponent to
implement the proposal.
(7) The period within which approval is to be granted to
implement the Initial Environmental Examination of the proposal and the
Environmental Impact Assessment report and other provisions thereon shall
be as prescribed.
7. Prevention and Control of Pollution : (1) Nobody shall create
pollution in such a manner as to cause significant adverse impacts on the
environment or likely to be hazardous to public life and people's health, or
dispose or cause to be disposed sound, heat radioactive rays and wastes
from any mechanical devices, industrial enterprises, or other places
contrary to the prescribed standards.
(2) If it appears that anyone has carried out any act contrary to Sub-
section (1) and caused significant adverse impacts on the environment, the
concerned agency may prescribe necessary terms in regard thereto or may
prohibit the carrying out of such an act.
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(3)If it appears that the use of any types of substance, fuel, tools or
device has caused or is likely to cause significant adverse impacts on the
environment, the Ministry may, by a notification inthe Nepal Gazette,
forbid the use of such substance, fuel, tools or device.
(4) Other provision relating to the prevention and control of
pollution shall be as prescribed.
8. Environment Inspector : (1) In order to effectively carry out or cause
to be carried out the acts of the mitigation, avoidance or control of pollution
or the acts required to be carried out in accordance with the Initial
Environmental Examination or the Environmental Impact Assessment
report, the Ministry may, by fulfilling the procedures prescribed by the
Public Service Commission, appoint Environmental Inspectors or designate
any employee to carry out functions of such Inspectors. The qualifications
for the Environment Inspectors shall be as prescribed.
(2) The functions, duties and powers of the Environme t Inspector
shall be as follows:-
(a) To inspect as to whether or not the acts of mitigat on,
avoidance or control of pollution have been carried out in
accordance with this Act or the Rules framed under this
Act.
(b) To inspect as to whether or not sound, heat or wastes have
been disposed or emitted from any place contrary to this
Act or the Rules framed under this Act.
(c) To examine and inspect as to whether or not the acts have
been carried out in accordance with the terms mentioned
while granting approval to implement a proposal.
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(d) To submit to the prescribed authority a report of the matters
found while inspecting pursuant to clauses (a), (b) and (c).
(3) In the course of inspection pursuant to clauses (a), (b) and (c) of
Sub-section (2), the Environment Inspector may, by giving a prior notice to
the concerned person, organization or proponent, inspect, examine or
investigate any house, land, building, factory, industry, vehicle, industrial
device, tools, machinery, animal, object, records, ocument or other
materials or goods.
(4) The concerned person, organization or proponent shall render
necessary assistance to the Environment Inspector in the course of
inspection pursuant to Sub-section (2) or (3).
(5) In case the concerned person or organization does not allow
inspecting while on inspection pursuant to sub- section (2) or (3), or
inhibits on the works while doing inspection, the Environment Inspector
may impose a fine of up to five thousand rupees on such person or
organization.
(6) One who is not satisfied with the punishment awarded by the
Environment Inspector pursuant to Sub-section (5) may file a complaint
with the prescribed authority, and the decision made by the prescribed
authority on such a complaint shall be final.
(7) Other functions, duties and powers of the Environment Inspector
shall be as prescribed.
9. Protection of National Heritage : (1) It shall be the duty of the
concerned agency to protect National Heritage.
(2) For the purpose of the protection of National Heritage, the
concerned agency shall be required to prepare and maintain an inventory
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and such an inventory shall also include the objects or places listed in the
World Heritage list available within Nepal.
(3) The objects, places, plants, animals etc. included in the inventory
referred to in Sub-section (2) shall be protected as prescribed.
10. Environment Protection Area : (1) Government of Nepal may, by a
notification in the Nepal Gazette, maintain any place within Nepal
containing natural heritage or aesthetic, rare wildlife, biological diversity,
plant, and places of historical and cultural importance, which are
considered extremely important from viewpoint of environment protection,
as an Environment Protection Area.
(2) The activities of any act as prescribed may be prohibited in the
Environment Protection Area pursuant to Sub-section (1).
11. Establishment of a laboratory : (1) Government of Nepal may
establish different laboratories as required or may prescribe any existing
laboratory to help in the activities related to environment protection and
pollution control.
(2) Other functions, duties and powers of the labortory established
or prescribed pursuant to Sub-section (1) shall be as prescribed.
12. To Allow Collection of Samples : In order to study, examine or analyze
the pollution, sound, heat and wastes to be or likely to be generated from
any industry, factory, machine, vehicle etc. the concerned person,
organization or proponent shall be required to allow the person or
institution authorized from the concerned agency to collect samples of such
objects or substances, as per necessity
13. Establishment and Operation of Environment Protection Fund :
(1) A fund named Environment Protection Fund shall be established for the
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protection of environment, prevention and control of pollution and
protection of the National Heritage.
(2) The following amounts shall be deposited in the Fund referred to
in Sub-section (1):
(a) Amount received from Government of Nepal
(b) Amount received from foreign governments or
international organizations.
(c) Amount received from other sources.
(3) The operation of the Environment Protection Fund shall be as
prescribed.
(4) The fund shall be audited by the Auditor General.
14. Power to Constitute Environment Protection Council: Government
of Nepal may, to provide policy guidance and suggestion to Government
of Nepal with regard to environment protection, and also to have
coordination among different agencies, constitute an Environment
Protection Council comprising of environment experts and representation
of the persons from recognized political parties at national level as well.
15. Concession and Facility May be Provided : In addition to the
concessions and facilities provided under the prevailing law, Government
of Nepal may, to encourage any industry, enterprise, technology or process
which causes positive impacts on environment protecti n, by publishing a
notification in the Nepal Gazette, provide additional concessions and
facilities as prescribed.
16. Committee May be Formed : (1) In order to accomplish the objectives
of this Act, the Ministry may form different committees consisting also of
experts in the relevant subject.
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(2) The functions, duties and powers of the committee formed
pursuant to Sub-section (1) shall be as prescribed by the Ministry.
17. Compensation May be Given : (1) In case, in consequence of he
creation or disposal of pollution, sound, heat or wastes by anybody contrary
to this Act or Rules or guidelines framed hereunder, any person or
organization happens to suffer any loss or damage, th person or
organization affected from such actions may, if he/s desires to have
compensation recovered from the person or institution or proponent doing
such act, make an application to the prescribed authority setting out the
details thereof.
(2) In case any application is filed pursuant to Sub-section (1), and
while doing examination by the prescribed authority of the application and
the state of situation of that place as well, if itis proved that the pollution,
sound, heat or wastes produced or disposed of by any person, organization
or proponent has caused adverse impacts on, and resulted in any loss or
damage to any person or organization, the prescribed authority shall cause
to be recovered the reasonable compensation from the person, organization
or proponent who has committed such acts to the concerned person or
organization.
18. Punishment: (1) In case any person carries out any act without getting a
proposal approved under Section 6 or any act contrary o the approved
proposal, the prescribed authority may stop such act immediately, and if
any person or organization has done such act, may according to the degree
of offence punish him/her with a fine up to one hundred thousand rupees.
(2) In case any person commits any other acts contrary his Act or
the Rules or guidelines framed hereunder, the prescribed authority may
require to stop such act immediately, and if any person or organization has
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done such act, punish him/her, according to the degree of the offence, with
a fine up to fifty thousand rupees.
19. Appeal: A person who is not satisfied with the decision or order made by
the prescribed authority may appeal to the concerned Appellate Court
within thirty five days from the date of the decision or order.
20. Procedures to be Followed : The prescribed authority shall, while carrying
out any act or action referred to in this Act, follow the procedures as
prescribed.
21. Delegation of Power : The Ministry may, as per necessity, delegate any
of the powers conferred on it pursuant to this Act to any agency of
Government of Nepal , the Environment Inspector or t any officer
employee.
22. This Act to Prevail : The maters set forth in this Act shall be governed
by this Act, and other matters shall be governed by the prevailing laws.
23. Power to Frame Guidelines : Government of Nepal may, subject to
this Act or the Rules framed hereunder, frame and implement necessary
guidelines; and it shall be the duty of all the coner ed to abide by such
guidelines.
24. Power to Frame Rules : (1) Government of Nepal may frame necessary
Rules for carrying out the objectives of this Act.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the powers conferred by
Sub-section (1), it may frame Rules in particular on the following matters:
a. Proposal
b. Conduction of Initial Environmental Examination or Environmental
Impact Assessment,
c. Sources, standards, prevention and control of polluti n,
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d. Biological diversity and the protection of National Heritage,
e. Water, air, noise, soil pollution,
f. Management and transportation etc. of wastes,
g. Operation of the Environment Conservation Fund,
h. Other necessary matters.