Are environmental impact statements imperfect
Chris J. Durden
drdn at mail.utexas.edu
Mon May 8 00:28:51 EDT 2000
Seems to me that an EIS survey can only show what is present, not what is
absent, without significantly destroying the habitat. I have been appalled
at the superficiality of most EIS reports I have seen.
Perhaps we need some mechanism for conservation organizational review of
At 09:28 7/05/00 -0400, you wrote:
>Doug raises the question about the reliability (and or veracity) of
>consultants performing environmental impact statements (or similar
>surveys) of land slated for development.
>We are in the process of validating (or invalidating) an EIS submitted
>for a 50A (20 Ha) plot of second growth woodland. The EIS was a
>travesty. It's not surprising that it might have overlooked a threatened
>species of Skipper (since the listing hadn't occurred yet and the
>skipper is only active for about two weeks in late summer), but they
>listed fewer than 20 trees, 20 breeding birds, no herps etc.
>It would be important, I think, if people become aware of EIS that are
>similarly flawed, to do a side by side comparison and publish it. Or
>perhaps we ought to collate these and do something big with it.
>I remember someone once saying that EIS were a deadly enemy because once
>completed they took on a life of their own and became official,
>regardless of the credentials of people who challenged them.
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