Chapter 12.2 to 12.5: Natural Resources and the Environment
The regulatory framework for the use and protection of Cambodia’s vast natural resources has grown considerably in recent years. This framework is expected to continue to expand in the future as this sector receives financial support from external aid. This section outlines the regulatory regime currently in place. Keep in mind that because of the technical and complex nature of regulations in this area, implementation and enforcement can be inconsistent.
6. Environmental Impact Assessments
Environmental impact assessments (“EIAs”) are required for some projects depending on their nature, size, activity etc., as specified in the Sub-Decree on the Implementation of Environmental Impact Assessment Process, enacted in 1999. The exact nature and format of the assessments are also set out in this Sub-Decree.
Investors whose projects are subject to an EIA are required to submit a preliminary EIA report and pre-feasibility study report to the MOE. For projects that may have severe environmental impacts, full EIA reports and feasibility study reports must also be submitted to the MOE. The approval of the MOE on the preliminary and full EIA reports must be obtained before commencing the project.
These investors are required to pay a service fee for examining the EIA report and monitoring the implementation of the project, and pay a contribution to the Environment Endowment Fund.
The MOE, as a matter of practice, rather than law, has been requiring newly licensed investment companies to enter into a contract with that Ministry. The contract requires the investor to state that it will comply with environmental regulations, will act to safeguard the environment and will immediately remedy any negative environmental impact caused by the investing company.
7. Water Pollution Control
The Sub-Decree on Water Pollution Control was enacted on 6 April 1999 to control water pollution and to suppress and reduce public water pollution. The Sub-Decree sets out the standards of liquid waste that can be discharged. The Sub-Decree determines some pollution sources that need to obtain authorization from the MOE prior to the discharge of liquid waste or the transportation of liquid waste from certain industries. The Sub-Decree also prohibits the dumping of waste products or dangerous substances that will cause water poisoning.
8. Solid Waste Management
The management of solid waste is governed by the Sub-Decree on Waste Management, dated 27 April 1999. The import of waste into Cambodia is specifically prohibited by the Sub-Decree. Pursuant to this Sub-Decree, authorization from the MOE is required for the transport or construction of hazardous waste disposal or storage sites; investment in hazardous waste treatment or incineration; investment in establishing waste disposal, waste incineration, waste storage or waste reprocessing sites. This Sub-Decree also requires that hazardous waste be disposed of and stored safely in accordance with accepted technical standards.
9. Noise and Air Pollution
The control of air pollution and noise nuisance is addressed in the Sub-Decree on Air Pollution and Noise Nuisance Control dated 10 July 2000. This Sub-Decree specifies the permitted level of pollutants and noise. The Sub-Decree prohibits the import, use or manufacture of motor vehicles and machineries that emit pollutants or noise beyond the permitted level. Pursuant to this Sub-Decree, the emission of pollutants and noise from immovable sources requires the authorization of the MOE.
10. Natural Protected Areas
Twenty-three natural protected areas were established by the Royal Decree on the Management of Natural Protected Areas dated 1 November 1993. These natural protected areas are classified under four major categories: national parks, wildlife sanctuaries, protected landscapes and multiple use areas. Subsequently, three additional natural protected areas have been classified by separate regulations. The Department of Nature Conservation and Protection of the MOE is responsible for overseeing the protected areas with the cooperation of the relevant ministries and authorities including; the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries (“MAFF”), the MOWRM, the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning, and Construction (“MLMUPC”), the Ministry of Tourism, the MRD and the provincial/municipal authorities.
11. International Treaties
Cambodia is a member of a number of treaties in relation to environmental protection. Some main environmental protection treaties that Cambodia has ratified to date include;
- the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer;
- the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer;
- the International Convention on Climate Change;
- the Kyoto Protocol to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change;
- the Convention on Biological Diversity;
- the Cartagena Protocol on Bio-Safety to the Convention on Biological diversity;
- the ASEAN Agreement on Trans-Boundary Haze Pollution;
- the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants;
- the Basel Convention on the Control of Trans-Boundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal;
- the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, Especially as Waterfowl Habitat;
- the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora;
- the Agreement on the Establishment of the Global Green Growth Institute; and
- Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Chapter 13 : Contract Law and Enforcement
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