In this article, we discuss the various types of environmental planning and management programs.
environmental planning types
There are various types of environmental planning, such as:
- City and urban development
- Legislative and administrative framework
- Infrastructural development
- Landscape ecological planning
- Ecological urban planning
- Environmental planning information dissemination
What is Environmental Planning?
Environmental planning is a branch of planning that focuses on the environment.
Environmental planning is generally done by an Environmental Planner and focuses on environmental concerns, environmental assessment, environmental policy, and land use, policy framework, and design.
The biotic and abiotic factors/components that surround us are referred to as the environment.
It includes air and its quality, water and its quality (surface or groundwater), micro and macro-climatic conditions, soil, flora (forests and animals), agricultural areas and their connection with the built environment, and so on.
Environmental planning prioritises not just the environment, but also the difficulties and problems that come with it.
This is frequently due to the interaction of the natural and constructed environments. A person who specialises in environmental planning is called an Environmental Planner.
Importance of environmental planning
Today, more than ever before, Environmental Planning is required. The influence on the environment is enormous due to the various character of our cities and settlements, as well as more complexity in terms of technology and development.
Cities and communities have sprang up and thrived around rivers, water bodies, and coastlines, the majority of which have a detrimental influence on environmental quality.
This is still going on, but it has resulted in a lot of area being allocated to development rather than the environment.
Furthermore, cities are outgrowing their boundaries with little compromise in the urban environment due to enormous pressures of economic development.
Cities by the ocean or river are losing marshes, mangroves, and woodlands, to name a few impacts.
In the sake of growth, metropolitan areas also lose other vital natural assets, rendering these settlements vulnerable to floods, storm surges, cyclones, and sea-level rise.
Various ecosystems make up the environment, and these ecosystems are home to a broad range of plants and wildlife.
When ecosystems are disrupted, they not only generate ecological imbalances, but they also have an influence on the functioning of adjacent ecosystems and the natural environment.
As a consequence of the economy’s growth, many planning initiatives emerge, yet they overlook environmental concerns.
Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) and Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) are being prepared as a result of this. Ecosystem valuation is a method of assessing a habitat’s ecosystem services in terms of its societal value.
Solid waste management is a big concern in today’s cities, and it has a direct influence on public health. Lack of landfill site design can result in air pollution and soil contamination.
Also, as leachate passes through the soil, it changes the soil’s properties and pollutes the groundwater, putting people’s health at risk from water-borne illnesses.
Not only at the micro-scale, but also at the macro-scale, environmental change has an impact on the micro-scale. These are issues that have to do with the environment.
Changes in the physical properties of the atmosphere, as well as changes in air quality, are brought about by them. Climate change is the key factor behind the changes and irregularities.
Changes in rainfall patterns, a number of sunny days, heat waves, and other factors can all be found in different parts of the world.
Climate change is not a new phenomenon, yet despite substantial evidence, many experts continue to reject that the world’s climate is changing.
The loss of shock-absorbing features within cities, such as wetlands and mangroves, has been relatively rapid due to rapid urbanisation in the 19th and 20th centuries, which has led to intense events such as flooding.
Role and Responsibilities of Environmental Planners
The role of an environmental planner is to plan and manage development projects and events that demand extra environmental care.
Their job also entails project planning, which necessitates a high level of competence in all aspects, including the environment.
Despite the fact that they are involved in development planning, their duties and responsibilities may vary from project to project.
Feasibility studies, site planning, and a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Constraints (SWOT) analysis may be included in this study, followed by forecasts and suggestions.
Some essential functions include land-use planning, public health planning, solid waste management, sanitation plans, performing environmental impact assessments (EIA), verifying compliance with disaster management plans, preparing environmental impact statements (EIS), and conducting plan reviews.
Depending on the purpose and scope of the project, environmental management and monitoring, energy, environmental design, landscape management, and park and recreation facilities planning may also be part of the work.
All of this is done for the people’s benefit, and one of the key jobs for these planners is stakeholder consultation. Businesses are also conscious of the need for environmental education and environmental awareness.
Senior environmental planners and scientists have around a decade of experience and operate in top and well-known environmental planner positions such as project manager and department head.
Role in framing Environmental Laws
Environmental planners are also involved in the creation of environmental legislation and regulations.
Environmental assessment (to understand and check environmental consequences), rehabilitation programmes, environmental quality, and certification are all governed by such regulations.
Compliance with the norms and regulations is not only the duty of the planners; it is a joint obligation of all project participants.
To create such laws, environmental planners, engineers, environmental scientists, regulatory agencies, and government departments collaborate.