Posted by: Hendra Siry | 3 July, 2010

Environment Permits May Get Quick OK

If a draft Environment Ministry regulation passes Presidential muster, a new permit application integrating 10 mandatory licenses will get companies up-and-running in less than 30 days, says an official. Businesses currently wait at least 45 days to get ten environment-related licenses that must be secured before companies can begin operation.

A government regulation is now being drafted to implement a section of the 2009 law on the environment that streamlines the license application process with a single permit. “We will try to speed the process so applicants need only 30 days to get an environmental license,” Environment Ministry representative Rosa Vivien Ratnawati said Friday. The ten mandatory licenses issued by the Environment Ministry regulate disposal of liquid waste into water or water sources, use of waste water for land applications, temporary storage of hazardous water, collecting hazardous waste, processing hazardous waste, disposal of liquid to sea and other areas.

Environmental permit applications will be rejected if there is no response within 30 days, according to the draft regulation. “We are still formulating an appeal mechanism if a proposed environmental permit is rejected,” Rosa said. The new regulation is expected to take effect this year. The law on the environment stipulates that an environmental permit may be used as requirement for obtaining or maintaining a business license. Under the law, project developers must first obtain an environmental impact analysis document (Amdal) within 75 days to obtain an environmental permit. Currently, companies are required only to have an Amdal to obtain business permits, though thousands of existing companies are believed to have no Amdals.

The draft regulation stipulates that environmental permits should be issued by the Environment Ministry, Governors, regents or mayors depending on the scale of a project and the location of the companies. The Environment Minister is responsible for issuing permits to companies operating in more than one province or to businesses dealing with security affairs.

Rosa said that the Environment Ministry would issue a decree specifying detailed criteria for withdrawing environment permits to ensure that the process is not arbitrary. The draft regulation’s terms and conditions will be complete next week and then discussed with other sectors, said Deputy Minister for Compliance Illyas Asaad.

“We must be careful with environmental permits since we don’t want to make the process more expensive for companies. We will involve all stakeholders and discuss the proposal before it is submitted to the President for approval,” Illyas added. Corporate compliance with environmental law is still low and adds to environmental damage, and air and water quality continues to decline due to a recent sharp increase in natural disasters, the ministry said previously.

Source: The Jakarta Post – July 3, 2010
By Adianto P. Simamora


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