III. EXISTING INSTITUTIONS AND MEASURES FOR INTEGRATING ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERNS INTO DEVELOPMENT PLANNING AND DECISION-MAKING FOR SUVA CITY
G. Technical criteria, guidelines and standards for urban pollution control
1. Criteria and guidelines and standards under the Sustainable Development Act.
Air and water quality criteria and guidelines have been included the Sustainable Development Act in order to rectify the current lack of standards on which control measures can be based. The criteria, which are provided in annexes to the Act, are detailed and specific; for example, different water criteria have been allocated for different water uses (drinking water, recreational water and aquatic ecosystems).
Appropriate soil quality criteria and cleanup guidelines have yet to be fully established. The development of the criteria and any future need for the formulation of environmental quality standards and design will be undertaken by the Monitoring and Enforcement Unit that is to be established within the Department of the Environment under the Act. The minister is empowered under the Act to introduce regulations that set standards. The Monitoring and Enforcement Unit will also be responsible for carrying out monitoring programmes and overseeing self-regulation by relevant industries.
SCC will become more effective in its pollution control functions through the utilization of the criteria specified in the Act. SCC will have to observe, and to the extent of its authority, enforce those standards under its water and air quality management functions. However, most of the power will remain in the hands of the concerned national government institutions.
The Act will provide the opportunity for SCC to require the provision of industry waste reduction guidelines for manufacturing and processing businesses that do not have a Code of Environmental Practice. The guidelines could be enforced via the mechanism of issuing business licences which is controlled by SCC. That would be done in consultation with the National Waste Management Committee. The guidelines would specify the actions that would have to be taken to reduce waste or litter resulting from certain activities. They would also specify targets to be achieved as well as the submission of an audit report on the progress made with respect to the reduction in waste.