Global phenomena
Environmental Impact Assessment is a global concern. A formal process for Environmental Impact Assessment now exists in over 100 countries around the world.

Purpose of Environmental Impact Assessment
The design of development projects like highways, airports and power stations is greatly enhanced through the use of environmental impact assessment. It is a systematic process to identify, predict and evaluate the environmental effects of proposed actions and projects.

Preventing damage to the environment
This process is applied before major decisions and development commitments are made. The main objective is to prevent, reduce and off-set significant negative impacts on the environment. Through the application of Environmental Impact Assessment it is possible to provide better information to the decision-maker on the environmental consequences of proposed actions.

Highlights
This open educational resource includes three parts: a course module, a wiki and an instructional guide. Through the course module you will learn:

Why do we need Environmental Impact Assessment?
Who is responsible?
How to undertake such an assessment?
What are the costs and benefits of completing an assessment?

An online encyclopedia
The wiki provides you with access to an encyclopedia on Environmental Impact Assessment. It includes information on the relevant legislation in each country as well as case studies of the implementation of this form of assessment in different sectors and in different countries. This encyclopedia is constantly being updated by you – the community of learners and educators.

Instructional Guide
This learning resource was initially developed for international students enrolled in the Masters of Science Degree in Global Environment and Development Studies at Agder University College in Norway. It is available for use in similar programmes across the globe. You can adapt and use these materials in your own teaching programmes. There are sample assignments that you may build on and change.

Level
Designed for students in the tertiary education (graduate and post-graduate) and for professionals and practitioners.

Design and Technology
The course module was developed using Wordpress with a custom built plug-in to support the creation of multi-choice quizzes. It contains video interviews with the subject matter expert as well as narrated animations using Flash Video. The online encyclopedia was developed using Mediawiki. Compatibility has been tested with Explorer, Firefox and Safari.

Authors
Barry Sadler and Mary McCabe edited the original UNEP training manual. Ralph Horne and Ian Thomas from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University edited the course module.

Copyright License
Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 3.0

Project Title
Contribution to the UNU-Global Virtual University

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