Roadmap for strengthening environmental audit in Tanzania introduced by National Environmental Management Council and Centre for Science and Environment

  • India-based think tank Centre for Science and Environment (CSE),in association with National Environmental Management Council (NEMC), releases technical manual on Strengthening Environmental Audit in Tanzania 
  • Dr. Samuel G. Mafwenga, Director General, NEMC and Nivit Kumar Yadav, Director, Industrial Pollution Programme, CSE unveil the manual at an event in Dar es Salaam 

Dar es Salaam, October 16, 2023:Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a global think tank based in New Delhi, India,in association with the National Environmental Management Council (NEMC), Tanzania released a technical report on strengthening environmental audit in Tanzania at a report release-cum-training programme here today. 

An environmental audit is a series of activities undertaken with respect to the operations of a facility or an organisation to evaluate its environmental performance. This is in recognition of the fact that the environment is an important parameter for consideration in any decision-making in the national interest. 

Speaking at the event, Nivit Yadav said: “An effective way of addressing environmental issues of any facility is through systematic environmental management programmes, including undertaking of environmentalself-audits. These audits are considered as a methodological examination, involving analyses, tests and confirmations of a facility’s procedures and practices with a goal of verifying whether they comply with environmental and legal requirements.” 

Officially releasing the manual, Dr. Samuel Mafwenga said: “The Council has observed that the received self-audit reports are in different formats, lack important information, and in some cases they do not reflect the actual status of the operating facility. To add to that, these reports do not adequately cover the information included in the Environmental Management Plan developed during the environmental impact assessment (EIA). This technical manual is intended to streamline the processes associated with undertaking and review of the environmental audits. The submitted self-audit reports need to be clear, and should be capable of identifying and correcting non-compliances and supporting improvement programmes. 

Dr Mafwenga added: “This manual is an outcome of collaborative efforts between CSE and NEMC. I would like to extend my appreciation to CSE for the technical support they have provided to NEMC in the development of this manual, which was needed to help standardize environmental self-audit in our country.” 

While preparing this manual, officials from CSE and NEMC reviewed several annual audit reports from different sectors and came to the conclusion that reporting was either insufficient or improper. Says Yadav: “The audit reports were weak in providing necessary information for enforcement. They had only one year’s data, which means the performance of the industry could not be compared with the previous year. The reports had irrelevant information which had already been covered in the EIA reports. While there was enough qualitative information,the reports lacked quantitative data.” 

Yadav added that the NEMC should hand-hold industries, consultants and auditors using manuals and guidelinesfor ensuring better quality of audit reports. 

Key highlights of the roadmap: What the NEMC can do

  • Prepare a technical manual detailing the format and information required in an environmental audit report.
  • Make water audit mandatory for water-intensive industries.
  • Prepare and introduce self-audit guidelines for industries to ensure that they collect relevant data which will assist regulators during audit.
  • Set up a committee of sector-specific experts who can technically review the audit reports and provide suggestions for improving the environmental performance of the industries.
  • Introduce a strategy to upload audit reports on the NEMC website – this transparency would help initiate public participation and feedback as well as assess the performance of an industry in terms of public health.

Speaking at the event, Dr Menan Jangu, Director, NEMC said: “Apart from being of immense use for project proponents and experts in conducting self-audits, this technical manual would also be useful for the Council and other regulatory bodies to review submitted documents.” 

To know more about the manual and the collaboration between NEMC and CSE, please contact: Nivit Kumar Yadav,, +91 11 99680 23535.