Environmental Authorisations are required for a range of activities listed in the National Environmental Management Act. Almost all projects requiring Environmental Authorisation require the developer to appoint an external Environmental Control Officer (ECO).
The primary function of the ECO is to ensure that the conditions of authorisation are implemented on-site and that the conditions of the approved Environmental Management Programme (EMPr) are applied by both the developer and the contractor. The EMPr is a document compiled to guide the developer in managing and reducing the environmental impact of the envisaged work.
Generally, the ECO’s appointment covers the following three phases:
- Pre-construction Phase:
During the Pre-construction Phase, the ECO reviews all relevant documentation and compiles a checklist for auditing purposes.
- Construction Phase:
For the duration of the Construction Phase, the ECO conducts routine audits of the construction site and reports on the performance of the project to the project team and relevant authorities. This reporting contains a written and photographic account, including any transgressions to the conditions of authorisation. The routine monitoring of the site also provides an opportunity for the ECO to provide guidance and assistance to the developer and contractor, to rectify transgressions on-site, to recommend methods to prevent future transgressions and in general to assist in the effective management of environmental concerns.
- Post-construction Phase:
During the Post-construction Phase of development, the ECO reports on the rehabilitation on-site to ensure the developer meets the conditions of authorisation. Once completed, the ECO compiles a close-out audit report, which is submitted to the developer and competent authorities, outlining compliance to the conditions of approval.
Acer Africa (Pty) Ltd, a member of the MBB Services International group of companies has provided this service on a wide spectrum of developments ranging from new agricultural enterprises, roads, electrical, commercial, and residential developments. Photos of some of our environmental compliance monitoring projects are shown below.
Contact us should you require more information around environmental compliance.
This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied upon as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your professional adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)