The Department of Environment has proposed that at least one tree be planted for every 80 square meters of land to ensure that residential and commercial construction sites have at least 10% of their area under tree cover.
The ministry issued a draft notice on the “Building Construction Environment Management Regulations, 2022” on Feb. 28, seeking public suggestions and objections to the proposal within 60 days.
The regulation will apply to projects involving the construction of new construction projects and the expansion, renovation or repair of existing old buildings with a built-up area of more than 5,000 square meters.
”A minimum of one tree per 80 m². land should be planted and tended to ensure at least 10 percent of the plot area is under tree cover. Existing trees will be counted for this purpose,” the draft notice states.
He said topsoil should only be removed to a maximum depth of 20cm from areas proposed for buildings, roads, paved areas and external services. It should be stored appropriately in designated areas and reapplied when planting the proposed vegetation on the site.
The ministry said no construction is permitted on wetlands and water bodies and groundwater cannot be used during the construction phase of the project except with prior approval from the Central Ground. Water Authority.
”Rooftop and off-roof rainwater harvesting plan should be designed and implemented to capture at least ‘one-day volume of precipitation and runoff’ from the roof and off-roof areas so as to prevent a possible groundwater contamination”, the notification mentioned.
At least 20% of open spaces must be permeable. Using grass cobbles, cobblestone blocks with at least 50% openness would also be considered a previous surface, he said.
“A dual plumbing system should be in place – one for the supply of fresh water for drinking, cooking and bathing etc, and another for the supply of treated water for rinsing. Only treated water should be used for rinsing,’ he said.
The ministry had set up a committee of experts on January 29 last year to review and recommend regulations for building and township construction projects.
The panel found it necessary to put in place standardized, results-based and quantifiable environmental regulations to provide a transparent approach and encourage the ease of doing business.
He also found it necessary to expand the oversight mechanism through third-party audits, encourage green certifications, and leverage the presence of regulators at different levels of governance while retaining overall oversight of the regulatory framework with central government.
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