Title: Protecting public health using environmental impact assessment in Malawi

Authors: Wells Utembe

Addresses: University of Malawi, Malawi Polytechnic, Private Bag 303, Blantyre 3, Malawi

Abstract: Development that does not adequately consider human health may pass increased disease burden costs to surrounding communities. EIA as a tool of sustainable development can be used to protect public health. The aim of this paper is to look at coverage of health impacts in the EIA system in Malawi. Under the current EIA system, EIA can be used to protect public health in Malawi. In EIA reports relationships between projects and determinants of health are merely discussed as they relate to conformance with legislation and standards. There is a need to promote specialised methods to tackle health impacts and also greater involvement of health institutions and professionals in EIA. In Malawi, it is possible to assess the impacts on health adequately within the EIA context and not necessarily in a distinct and stand-alone health impact assessment.

Keywords: public health; risk assessment; health determinants; sustainable development; health impact assessment; HIA; Malawi; sustainability; health protection; environmental impact assessment; EIA.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESD.2015.070135

International Journal of Environment and Sustainable Development, 2015 Vol.14 No.3, pp.258 - 272

Received: 18 Feb 2014
Accepted: 29 Oct 2014

Published online: 11 May 2015 *

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