EIA / SEA procedure on a round table with the media

Roundtable with media: "EIA / SEA procedures - analysis, recommendations and best examples of their implementation”

Tirana, 13.06.2018 - The country's socio-economic development requires continuous development of community-based projects, as well as facilitating the delivery of these services. Designing a project is the work of architects, engineers or designers. Applying it is required to consider where and how you will use the resources for it. But environmental issues accompany various projects and are one of the most important parts of the project implementation process. This requires that you definitely use natural resources steadily and with as few disposable, destructive or polluting actions as possible. For this it is very important to take into account during the project development all the negative impacts of the project on the environment and on this evidence become a well-planned plan for mitigation measures for reducing or avoiding adverse environmental impacts. From current practices, projects from time to time do not accurately account for their impacts and do not include measures to mitigate / avoid their impacts. This process has faced the community's response to protest or oppose community projects and requirements to participate in public consultations / discussions and further in the decision-making process for these projects.

Raising their awareness and knowledge of public transparency and public participation in consultations on various projects and the role of media in these activities by promoting meetings and discussion opportunities between public authorities, investors and the community was the main theme of the training session that CO-SEED project team in Albania has organized for and with media representatives in the premises of Hotel Mondial on 13.06.2018. The CO-SEED project team in Albania, composed by INCA and two civil society organizationsMillieukontakt and EDEN Center that have won grants from the CO-SEED project, conducted this training to create a communication bridge and engage the media in the information, discussion and decision-making process communities in the development of various projects that have an impact on the environment by providing not only a conversation about the recognition of EIA and SEA concepts and their development processes, but also the means by which to consult and evaluate the EIA study or SEA and the consultation process for them.

Training focused on the importance of journalists and media - visual and written - in raising public awareness to take an active part in planning and developing projects and creating a media where the public can find its ways of information and communication on engaging in the processes of Environmental Impact Assessment and Strategic Environmental Assessment, created the opportunity to inform participants on issues of EIA and SEA, which public authorities are responsible for them and what are the legal and institutional framework obligations engage the public in these processes, how information can be used to increase the public's interest in participation, and what is offered to journalists to understand how an EIA or SEA study has been conducted and what they can relate to through articles and chronicles they prepare for this process. CSOs gave participants examples of their work during project development by providing their findings and recommendations on the shortcomings of the institutional legal framework, avoiding the procedures outlined in the legal framework, and the incorrect way of communicating responsible institutions to the public.

All journalists expressed interest in the topic and made a productive discussion about media engagement for presenting environmental issues in their editions, newspapers, or social media. They requested details from the information process and the legal framework that obliges / invites the media in this process and expressed their stance on the cases presented.

At the end of the training, the project team presented the Manual on Best Global Practices for Successful Cooperation between Civil Society Organizations, Public Authorities and Private Companies in Environmental Impact Assessment Decision-making and Strategic Environmental Assessments.