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Background of the Project  

The National Environmental Management Action Plan (NEMAP) was begun in 1992, and published with Cabinet endorsement in 1996. It is the first national document to assess the full range of environmental problems in Bangladesh, and its assessment was based on wide public consultation. Some 270 recommendations emerged from the NEMAP. High level of air pollution in localized urban areas and along the major city roads, poor vehicle maintenance and enforcement mechanisms were identified as major causes of concern in Bangladesh. No analytical framework or implementable strategy was developed in the NEMAP document for addressing environmental problems of concern and its broad based recommendations did not take into account of costs and benefits, or institutional constraints, for their implementation.

In response, between Sept. 1996 and June 1997, as part of Economic and Sector Work (ESW) for setting environmental priorities, the World Bank engaged in a systematic participatory process with sixteen line agencies to better identify and rank priority environmental actions. This was done using both an environmental economic cost-benefit analytical framework and an environmental expenditure review of all government investment projects in the capital budget. As a result of this process, a much clearer and prioritized action plan for addressing environmental issues was framed. This action plan was issued by the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh (GoB) as the NEMAP Implementation Framework. This new framework is now being used to coordinate the environmental activities of different donor agencies and to track the progress in implementing prioritized objectives of NEMAP.

The main components of the implementation framework are the following:
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Policy formulation: MoEF/DoE and other sectoral line agencies whose operations would have impact on the natural environment;

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Integration of the environmental policy with overall development policy: The Planning Commission, the National Environmental Council (chaired by the Prime Minister), and the Executive Committee of the National Environmental Council (comprising the Secretaries of key ministries);

» Advocacy: DoE, NGOs, and the media; and,
» Monitoring and enforcement (including the control of air pollution): DoE through the implementation of cost-effective EIA and other policy/regulatory mechanisms.

:: © Air Quality Management Project 2004 ::