HIGH LEVEL COMMITTEE ON GREEN LAWS

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SUMMARY

HIGH LEVEL COMMITTEE ON GREEN LAWS

  • Suo motu taken into notice by standing committee and scrapped all recommendations of High level committee on Green Laws(Mini Parliament).
  • The Subramaninan committee(HLC) changes are not good and go against the grain of procedures.
  • TSR Subramanian bureaucratic committeeà not an expert committee.
  • Suggestion for many new laws have been made by the HLC
  • One recommendation is all the laws should be combined and Environment Laws Management Act should be enacted so that all of these can be managed. But this new law is more about clearances and it wants to bring National and State level clearance authorities which is already there under Environment Protection Act. So there is no need.
  • Hierarchy of laws will lead to complication only and the current Environmental laws are enough to protect and conserve environment.
  • The HLC focuses of Forests but we should understand that there are many other species and ecosystems which are not forest related and critical For eg: Grasslands (Village common lands).
  • No mention at all of Wetlands as water security and Ground water is related to it.
  • The HLC has exceeded its jurisdiction as it has even given its opinion on Forest Rights Act,2006 and National Green Tribunal Act,2010.
  • What is required is improvement in Administration and not more courts.
  • The HLC talked about streamlining of Green Laws which is important but they suggested it to done through single window clearance which is not streamlining but dilution.
  • There has been lot of restriction and disapproval of public hearing clause of current laws which is essentially is dilution. Already there has been a lot of delay in organization of public hearings and it is for namesake and the delay in clearance is not because of public hearing but because of Bureaucratic redtapism.The Locals know about the place much more than others and hence their view is important.
  • HLC says only those forests having density of 70% or more will be considered as Green Forest but it is only 4% of India’s Forest area.
  • CAMPA provisions which are taken in detail have not been implemented and hence the delay leads to defeating of the purpose.
  • Not only environmentalists, the scientists working on air, water and soil should be included which brings out a scientific and critical analysis based report.
  • HLC report is more of Environment Clearances rather than Environment Governance.

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