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OP 4.01, Annex C - Environmental Management Plan

These policies were prepared for use by World Bank staff and are not necessarily a complete treatment of the subject.
OP 4.01 - Annex C
January, 1999

1.  A project's environmental management plan (EMP) consists of the set of mitigation, monitoring, and institutional measures to be taken during implementation and operation to eliminate adverse environmental and social impacts, offset them, or reduce them to acceptable levels. The plan also includes the actions needed to implement these measures.1  Management plans are essential elements of EA reports for Category A projects; for many Category B projects, the EA may result in a management plan only.  To prepare a management plan, the borrower and its EA design team (a) identify the set of responses to potentially adverse impacts; (b) determine requirements for ensuring that those responses are made effectively and in a timely manner; and (c) describe the means for meeting those requirements.2  More specifically, the EMP includes the following components.


2.  The EMP identifies feasible and cost-effective measures that may reduce potentially significant adverse environmental impacts to acceptable levels.  The plan includes compensatory measures if mitigation measures are not feasible, cost-effective, or sufficient.  Specifically, the EMP

(a)  identifies and summarizes all anticipated significant adverse environmental impacts (including those involving indigenous people or involuntary resettlement);

(b)  describes--with technical details--each mitigation measure, including the type of impact to which it relates and the conditions under which it is required (e.g., continuously or in the event of contingencies), together with designs, equipment descriptions, and operating procedures, as appropriate;

(c)  estimates any potential environmental impacts of these measures; and

(d)  provides linkage with any other mitigation plans (e.g., for involuntary resettlement, indigenous peoples, or cultural property) required for the project.


3.  Environmental monitoring during project implementation provides information about key environmental aspects of the project, particularly the environmental impacts of the project and the effectiveness of mitigation measures.  Such information enables the borrower and the Bank to evaluate the success of mitigation as part of project supervision, and allows corrective action to be taken when needed.  Therefore, the EMP identifies monitoring objectives and specifies the type of monitoring, with linkages to the impacts assessed in the EA report and the mitigation measures described in the EMP.  Specifically, the monitoring section of the EMP provides(a) a specific description, and technical details, of monitoring measures, including the parameters to be measured, methods to be used, sampling locations, frequency of measurements, detection limits (where appropriate), and definition of thresholds that will signal the need for corrective actions; and (b) monitoring and reporting procedures to (i) ensure early detection of conditions that necessitate particular mitigation measures, and (ii) furnish information on the progress and results of mitigation.
Capacity Development and Training

4.  To support timely and effective implementation of environmental project components and mitigation measures, the EMP draws on the EA's assessment of the existence, role, and capability of environmental units on site or at the agency and ministry level.3  If necessary, the EMP recommends the establishment or expansion of such units, and the training of staff, to allow implementation of EA recommendations.  Specifically, the EMP provides a specific description of institutional arrangements--who is responsible for carrying out the mitigatory and monitoring measures (e.g., for operation, supervision, enforcement, monitoring of implementation, remedial action, financing, reporting, and staff training). To strengthen environmental management capability in the agencies responsible for implementation, most EMPs cover one or more of the following additional topics: (a) technical assistance programs, (b) procurement of equipment and supplies, and (c) organizational changes.
Implementation Schedule and Cost Estimates

5.  For all three aspects (mitigation, monitoring, and capacity development), the EMP provides (a) an implementation schedule for measures that must be carried out as part of the project, showing phasing and coordination with overall project implementation plans; and (b) the capital and recurrent cost estimates and sources of funds for implementing the EMP.  These figures are also integrated into the total project cost tables.
Integration of EMP with Project

6.  The borrower's decision to proceed with a project, and the Bank's decision to support it, are predicated in part on the expectation that the EMP will be executed effectively. Consequently, the Bank expects the plan to be specific in its description of the individual mitigation and monitoring measures and its assignment of institutional responsibilities, and it must be integrated into the project's overall planning, design, budget, and implementation. Such integration is achieved by establishing the EMP within the project so that the plan will receive funding and supervision along with the other components.


  1. The management plan is sometimes known as an "action plan."  The EMP may be presented as two or three separate plans covering mitigation, monitoring, and institutional aspects, depending on borrowing country requirements.
  2. For projects involving rehabilitation, upgrading, expansion, or privatization of existing facilities, remediation of existing environmental problems may be more important than mitigation and monitoring of expected impacts.  For such projects, the management plan focuses on cost-effective measures to remediate and manage these problems.
  3. For projects having significant environmental implications, it is particularly important that there be in the implementing ministry or agency an in-house environmental unit with adequate budget and professional staffing strong in expertise relevant to the project (for projects involving dams and reservoirs, see BP 4.01, Annex B).
OP 4.01 - Environmental Assessment

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