In addition to updating instructions on how to participate in spatial planning and environmental permits proceedings, the changes in the environmental impact assessment procedures are explained.
The texts on how to take part in the creation of state and local government special plans are completely new. “For large-scale objects, such as high- voltage power lines, roads, ports and wind parks, there is a new decision-making procedure in the new Planning Act," says Siim Vahtrus, an environmental lawyer at EELC. "Since these decisions concern both the local people as well as the general public, we included in the guidelines explanations on how to participate in these planning procedures."
Possibilities to participate in the proceedings of national, county-wide, comprehensive and detailed spatial plans have in general remained the same, therefore, the updated guidelines point out the most important changes in these proceedings. Also, the changes in the requirements of environmental impact assessment are explained.
The guidelines were additionally updated according to the information and feedback gathered during public seminars that took place in all 15 counties of Estonia. „Meeting local people and communities gave us a good practical overview of the real-life issues concerning the participation in environmental matters,“ says Siim Vahtrus. „As we hope the guidelines help people find the answers to their questions concerning complicated proceedings, the personal meeting of our audience has been a valuable experience and good feedback to our work.“
Guidelines for Participation (in Estonian):
The project was financed by Environmental Investment Centre (KIK)