Environmental Incidents Managment
Environmental Incident Management and Disaster Prevention
NEMA has an Incident Management Policy that outlines how the Authority will increase and enhance its capacity, in partnership with other lead agencies, to manage environmental incidents hazards that may lead to disasters
NEMA has developed an incident management system using a risk based classification system and raising awareness amongst staff and partner organizations.
NEMA has initiated and evolve procedures and safeguards for the prevention of accidents which may cause environmental degradation and evolve measures where accidents and incidents occur.
Environmental Disasters are the convergence of hazards and vulnerable conditions. Disasters hinder economic and social progress. Ecosystem services that protect lives from natural hazards offer opportunities to reduce risk, decrease poverty and achieve sustainable development.
Common environmental incidents that can lead to disasters in Kenya include:
1. Foam on Mbagathi Road during the long rains
2. Oil spills in rivers and ocean
3. Forest fires
4. Severe drought leading to distress of flora and fauna
5. Dumping of solid waste in undesignated areas
6. Unlicensed Effluent discharges to the river
7. Unlicensed Water abstraction
8. Smoke, fumes and odours
9. Light nuisance
10. Noise nuisance
11. Fire accidents
14. Sewage bursts
Picture : At least 20 people have been rushed to hospital after a gas leak in Shauri Moyo, Nairobi.
NEMA defines an incident as a specific event which is brought to the attention of the Authority, is within the Authority’s areas of responsibility and may have an environmental/operational impact. Incidents that may have resulted in environmental damage. This may include damage to water courses, land and emissions to the air.
NEMA works to prevent and combat future environmental threats based on early risk assessments by facilitating access to relevant environmental data for decision-making through monitoring, analyses and reports on the state of environment and trends.
NEMA has developed an incident classification scheme to assess incidents according to impact to NEMA resources and the environment.
Incident Recording and Allocation
NEMA will maintain a dedicated incident reporting telephone line that is be separate from the normal telephone lines used.
The telephone line is on an Incident Desk that is covered during the normal working day between 8am and 5pm. Outside of those hours an automatic telephone answering service is provided on that dedicated line.
Officers from the Compliance and Enforcement Team man the Incident Desk between 8am and 5pm on normal working days. The duties of the officer include:
1. Receive incidents reported to the Authority.
2. Record reported incidents in the Incidents Register. (See Annex 1)
3. Classify the incident according to the National Incident Classification Scheme.
4. Allocate resources to respond appropriately to the incident.
5. Maintain and update the Incident Register.
6. Close incidents when investigations are complete or where a prosecution file is commenced.
7. Feedback the results of the investigations to the person reporting the incident, unless they have requested no further contact.
Details of persons who report incidents to the Authority will not be disclosed outside of NEMA under any circumstances.
The Duty Officer will also act as a focal point for all media inquiries in respect of incidents reported to the Authority.
NEMA has established the system to manage incidents in the longer term to ensure that appropriate follow up action is completed with the aim of improving environmental performance.
Picture: Dumping waste into rivers can cause environmental disasters report such cases