The Environmental Assessment (EA) is a technical analysis carried out according to the applicable Romanian environmental legislation in order to identify the causes and consequences of past, present and estimated cumulative negative impacts generated by an activity upon the environmental factors of a property. The purpose of the study is to develop an independent professional opinion about the environmental condition of the respective property. In case the identified environmental impact is significant, this study is completed with a risk assessment.
An Environmental Assessment is necessary to obtain the Environmental Permit or its renewal, or to decide on the environmental obligations, if there are changes of company ownership, if the activity of a company ceases or a company is dissolved, etc.
According to the legal requirements (Ministerial Order no. 184/1997 for the approval of the procedure for carrying out environmental assessments), the environmental assessment is carried out in compliance with explicit requirements, which differ depending on the type of assessment:
- Phase I EA involves the collection of relevant data and information, without intrusive investigations, in order to assess the potential or actual environmental impact of the site under investigation;
- Phase II EA consists of physical, chemical and/or biological sampling and analysis to quantify the extent of pollution.
Environmental Assessment – Regulations
The following regulations in force concerning environmental protection must be taken into account when preparing an Environmental Assessment:
- Government Emergency Ordinance no. 195/2005 on environmental protection, approved with its modifications and completions by Law no. 265/2006, with its subsequent modifications and completions;
- Ministry Order no. 184/1997 approving the Procedure for elaborating environmental assessments;
- Ministry Order no. 1798/2007 approving the Procedure for issuing the environmental permit;
Types of Environmental Assessments
According to the legal requirements, the Environmental Assessment is prepared in compliance with explicit requirements, which differ depending on the type of assessment.
The Phase I Environmental Assessment is an environmental study consisting of data collection and documentation (without taking samples or performing analyses of environmental factors); the study shall include all the technical analysis elements for the considered environmental aspects that are necessary in assessing the extent of the real or potential environmental impact of a certain site.
The Phase II Environmental Assessment consists in investigations of a site to quantify the pollution magnitude, by collecting samples and performing physical, chemical or biological analyses of the environmental factors. If possible, it is recommended to collect a sample from a neighbouring area that is not affected by pollution, in order to establish a benchmark with which to compare the results of the samples collected from the polluted area. A Phase II Environmental Assessment can be carried-out as follows:
- the competent environmental authorities request a Phase II Environmental Assessment if a Phase I Environmental Assessment indicates there is a potentially significant pollution on a site;
- the competent environmental authorities decide that there can be significant pollution on the site in question and a Phase II Environmental Assessment must be carried out at the same time as the phase I environmental assessment.
Within the permitting procedure, AUDITECO can also develop other documentations required of the activity holder during the environmental permitting procedure, namely: a) presentation and declaration form, requested from the activity holder in the initial stage of the permitting procedure; b) risk assessment study, requested after the completion of the Phase II Environmental Assessment, if the environmental authority deems it necessary, etc.
According to the Order of the Minister of Environment, Waters and Forests no. 1134/2020 on the approval of the conditions for the elaboration of environmental studies, the criteria for the certification of natural and legal persons, AUDITECO is certified to carry out these types of environmental studies, according to certificate no. 219/05.05.2022.