Coordinators: David Blaha and Debra Zanewich
IAIA members can check out WAB on IAIAConnect.
Check out the latest happenings from the WAB below:
Large Infrastructure Projects: Integrating Sustainability and Managing Risks
Wednesday, February 15, 2017
Three speakers shared their experiences related to integrating sustainability and managing risks in large infrastructure projects:
Davis, Rachel and Daniel M. Franks. 2014. "Costs of Company-Community Conflict in the Extractive Sector." Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative Report No. 66. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Kennedy School.
U.S. Treasury Views on Environmental/Social Risk Management at the Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs)
Wednesday, January 11th , 2017
Dan Peters, Director of the Office of Development Results and Accountability at the U.S. Department of Treasury, discussed the Treasury Department's role in the review and approval of MDB projects as well as Treasury's engagement with the MDBs on their environmental and social risk management policies. He also highlighted some emerging trends and challenges, followed by an exchange of insight and views by WAB members. His presentation is available here.
Cumulative Impact Assessment of Hydropower Development in Pakistan: A Case Study in a Critical Habitat in the Jhelum-Poonch Rivers Watershed
Wednesday, November 2nd , 2016
Pablo Cardinale, Principal Environmental Specialist at the International Finance Corporation (IFC) presented on IFC's approach to management of cumulative impacts potentially resulting from multiple cascading hydropower in critical aquatic habitat due to the presence of the CE Kashmir Catfish and the EN Golden Mahaseer, and how a project's Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP) has been elevated to guide a Biodiversity Strategy to manage potential cumulative impacts at a landscape level. His presentation is available here and the Cumulative Impact Assessment report is available here.
IFC Good Practice Handbook – Cumulative Impact Assessment and Management: Guidance for the Private Sector in Emerging Markets:
The Environmental and Social Framework of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank
Wednesday Sep. 28, 2016
Dear WAB Members and Friends,
Happy Autumn and welcome to the 2016-17 season of WAB Events.
We are pleased to announce that the first meeting of the Washington Area Branch (WAB) current season will address:
The Environmental and Social Framework of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank
Wednesday September 28th (3:00-5:00pm),
in Room U12-250
MIGA, World Bank U Building, 1800 G Street, NW
The presentation will be made by Stephen F. Lintner who is serving as the Senior Environmental and Social Advisor to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. Stephen is a former President of the IAIA and was the Co-Chair of the Asia Day Forum held during our Annual Conference in Nagoya this May.
Although advance registration is not required for visitor’s entry to MIGA’s office (please bring valid government issued ID!), please RSVP by return email if you plan to attend so that we can prepare appropriately. We plan to broadcast the meeting live (but not record), so let us know if you need the WebEx access code.
Thank you for sharing this announcement with colleagues who may be interested in the topic.
We hope you will join us!
Will Knowland and Debra Zanewich
Climate Change and Impact Assessment, Wednesday May 4, 2016
For the first time in several years, the Washington Area Branch (WAB) returned to the key topic of Climate Change. Some three dozen IAIA-WAB members and friends participated in the two-hour session, which was convened at the offices of MIGA, and webcast to participants in several locations and countries. This meeting was a joint effort of WAB and the Climate Change Section, which, with 160 members, is IAIA’s on-going forum for IA practitioners to exchange expertise and knowledge on climate change across all areas of IA.
WAB, with IAIA and the World Bank, had organized a Special IAIA Symposium on Climate Change and Impact Assessment in November 2010. A year later, we devoted a session to updates from the Symposium and initial activities of IAIA’s Climate Change Section. But despite continued widespread interest, it has taken until now to again organize a session on the topic.
Meanwhile, the topic of climate change and impact assessment (CCIA) has become even more timely with recent Paris climate change agreement, and dedication of IAIA’s 2017 International Conference to the theme of Impact Assessment’s Contribution to The Global Efforts in Addressing Climate Change. In mid-May, just a week following our May 4th session, at IAIA 16 in Nagoya, Japan, the Climate Change Section would convene what has become an annual roundtable on the topic.
So the intention was to engage both the WAB membership and Washington-based development agencies, rekindle discussions begun at the Symposium in 2010, and begun building awareness and momentum for future efforts, including IAIA 17.
The First Announcement, Prospectus, Call for Session Proposals for IAIA 17 in Montreal is now posted on the web. See:
Impact Assessment’s Contribution to the Global Efforts in Addressing Climate Change
Le Centre Sheraton Montréal Hôtel
3-6 April 2017 http://conferences.iaia.org/2017/index.php
WAB members and friends are strongly encouraged to review the submission guidance and, if interested, submit proposals to IAIA. The deadline for Session Proposal submission is coming up quickly, June 30 of this year! The paper and poster abstract submission deadline will be the 31st of October.
Wes Fisher, of The Cadmus Group, and co-chair of IAIA’s Climate Change Section, provided the opening presentation, based on his report to the up-coming IAIA Climate Change Roundtable in Nagoya. He quickly reviewed the history of IAIA’s involvement in the topic over the past half dozen years, the increasingly central role that climate change is playing in considerations of planetary boundaries, and key issues that have emerged from on-going discussions within the Climate Change Section and the annual IAIA climate change roundtables. Climate change scientists and both governmental and private stakeholders are still relatively under-aware of the potential for EIA/SEA processes to contribute to addressing climate change challenges. So new and additional efforts are needed to reach out to and engage the climate science community and investment/risk managers. At the same time, effective applications of EIA/SEA and CEA tools and approaches to climate change decision-making processes need to be identified and highlighted, and opportunities for joint climate change and impact assessment need to be encouraged. (See IAIA CC and IA Follow-Up Next Steps, Draft, 15 April 2016, for discussion at IAIA-16).
With this background, brief presentations of recent experience and post-Paris strategies of their respective agencies were provided by:
Hilary Hoagland-Grey, IDB
Sameer Akbar, World Bank
Charles E. Di Leva, World Bank
Vladimir Stenek, IFC
Stephen Parsons, ExIm Bank
Douglas Mason, MCC
CCIA is integral to the thinking of each of these agencies, and several – IDB, World Bank, and IFC – are in the process of up-dating their environmental and/or climate change guidance. The World Bank has just, in mid-April, released its new Climate Action Plan, committing to major efforts on both mitigation and adaptation. ExIm’s efforts have focused on appropriate consideration of new coal-fired power plant investments. MCC works pro-actively with other federal agencies in screening activities for climate risks, while relying on its environmental and social assessment procedures and building climate change adaptation and mitigation into programs where possible.
Several members of WAB and the Climate Change Section have been considering the possibility of a follow-up symposium in Washington to the 2010 event. There was good discussion of the costs and resources that were needed for the 2010 event, and the need to assure that follow up and sponsorship efforts are addressed. There was general agreement that near-term efforts will necessarily focus on the IAIA ’17 conference.
Climate Change and Impact Assessment will surely continue to evolve as an interest of WAB/IAIA members. New tools and guidelines related to climate change will provide opportunities for future WAB presentations and Climate Change Session webinars. For now, some of the key references used or mentioned during the May 4th meeting are listed below.
IAIA CC and IA Follow-Up Next Steps, Draft, 15 April 2016, for discussion at IAIA-16
The Climate Change Symposia Proceedings:
IAIA CLIMATE CHANGE SYMPOSIUM, Washington, DC, USA / 15-16 November 2010 http://conferences.iaia.org/washingtonDC2010/
IAIA Climate Change Section – IAIA Connect
World Bank Group, Climate Change Knowledge Portal
World Bank Group, Climate Change Action Plan http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/infographic/2016/04/07/the-world-bank-group-climate-change-action-plan
WB CC & Safeguards Policy Review - Expert Focus Group, Mexico City, April 2013 https://consultations.worldbank.org/Data/hub/files/meetings/Safeguards_Focus_Group_ClimateChange_MexicoCity_Summary_Final.pdf
IFC Climate Implementation Plan (April 2016):
MCC’s initiatives in Climate Change:
USAID Environment and Global Climate Change
US Government Executive Orders and Policies
Another reference mentioned during the event is the IFC Good Practice Handbook – Cumulative Impact Assessment and Management: Guidance for the Private Sector in Emerging Markets:
7 January 2016
Challenges and Solutions of Addressing Environmental and Social Issues in the Wind Power Sector – Updates, Experience, and Revised EHS Guidelines
In addition to reviewing recent experience from on-going assessments of wind power projects in Central and South America, this two-hour session focused on lessons learned and advances in good industry practice, including key changes in the recently updated IFC’s Wind Energy EHS Guidelines, and the biological basis for bird and bat monitoring protocols.
Justin Pooley and Lori Anna Conzo summarized the changes made in the recently updated World Bank Group EHS Guidelines for Wind Energy in their presentation: EHS Guidelines Update - Wind Energy.
Lori Anna Conzo is a Senior Environmental Specialist and Biodiversity Focal Point in the Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) Department of the International Finance Corporation (IFC). As Biodiversity Focal Point, Lori works across the regions and sectors on biodiversity-related issues, with a focus on the infrastructures and renewable energy.
Justin Pooley is a Principal Specialist in IFC’s Environment, Social & Governance Department and the department’s global sector lead for power projects. Justin has worked on wind projects in multiple regions and was one of the core IFC team involved in updating the WBG Wind Energy EHS Guidelines in 2014-15.
Marianela González reviewed the field experience and results of field monitoring of bird and bat impacts of several wind power projects in Central America in her presentation: Bird and Bat Monitoring: Experiences from a Private Wind Power Producer.
Marianela González is Environmental and Social Compliance Coordinator at Globeleq Mesoamerica Energy. She has nearly a decade of experience in environmental and social management of renewable energy projects, including compliance with local legislation and IFC’s / MIGA’s Environmental & Social Performance Standards and Good International Industry Practices for wind and solar energy projects in Costa Rica, Panama, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico, and Chile.
Genevieve Beaulac presented very recent findings from IDB wind power projects in Oaxaca, Mexico, and Latin America – following up on her September 2014 WAB presentation, Wind Energy in Latin America, Challenges and Solutions.
Genevieve Beaulac is a Senior Environmental Specialist at the Environmental Safeguards Unit of the IDB, responsible for the design, implementation and monitoring of projects in the energy sector (wind, geothermal, hydroelectric and transmission lines.
Caleb Gordon reviewed broad data and biological theory in his presentation: Wind-Wildlife Issues in Latin America – Biological Perspectives.
Caleb Gordon, an ornithologist and wildlife ecology with WEST, Inc., has managed wildlife research and impact studies for IFIs and private developers on energy projects in Uzbekistan, Honduras, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Nicaragua.
Caleb has particular interest in offshore wind-wildlife studies. In this area, he has managed four large research projects for the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM, USDOI), has given numerous presentations at scientific, government, and commercial conferences, and has served as wildlife issues subcommittee chair of the American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA) Offshore Wind Workgroup (OWWG).
7 October 2015
Assessment of Biodiversity, Critical Habitat, and Ecosystem Services – Recent Experience from Africa and Latin America, with Reference to the IFC Performance Standards
Raymi Beltran of IFC, and Charles Hernick of The Cadmus Group, jointly presented their recent work in Assessment of Biodiversity, Critical Habitat, and Ecosystem Services – Recent Experience from Africa and Latin America, with Reference to the IFC Performance Standards.
Raymi Beltran is a Senior Environmental Specialists with IFC's Oil, Gas and Mining Group. He has over 15 years of experience in environmental and social management working on oil, gas, mining and infrastructure projects in Latin America, Asia and Africa. As part of his current position, Raymi works closely with private sector companies in assuring compliance with IFC's Environmental & Social Performance Standards and adopting Good International Industry Practices for their projects. Prior to joining IFC, Raymi was the Environmental Manager for Kinross Gold based in Santiago, Chile, and prior to this, he was the Environmental and Community Affairs Manager for the PERU LNG Project in Peru.
Charles Hernick is a Senior Associate at The Cadmus Group, Inc. He is an expert on USAID environmental safeguards/compliance and tropical forestry and biodiversity assessments. His recent projects include environmental impact assessments and tropical forestry/biodiversity assessments in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa. He has managed extensive policy and environmental finance research, and he designed the U.S. policy for mitigating the financial risks associated with the geologic sequestration of carbon dioxide (i.e., polluter pays principle/financial assurance).
13 May 2015
“Challenges to Performing ESIA and Implementing Projects in Liberia” – Presentation by Heather Boyd, Acorn International, LLC, and Wassim Hamdan, Earthtime.
28 January 2015
Ongoing Developments in Satellite Remote Sensing for Environmental and Social Impact Assessment: focussed on new technology solutions and how they can contribute to impact assessment and monitoring.
Referenced material is found at the following links:
Branches are responsible for their operating structure and activities, and operate separately and independently of IAIA. IAIA is not responsible or liable for the actions or activities of the Branches.