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close this bookConducting Environmental Impact Assessment in Developing Countries (United Nations University, 1999, 375 p.)
close this folder6. Environmental management measures and monitoring
close this folder6.2 Environmental management plan (EMP)
View the document(introduction...)
Open this folder and view contents6.2.1 Issues and mitigation measures
Open this folder and view contents6.2.2 Illustrations of guidelines for mitigation measures for specific projects
View the document6.2.3 Development of a green belt as a mitigation measure

6.2.3 Development of a green belt as a mitigation measure

All the mitigation measures identified thus far have been impact specific. However, one mitigation measure that has a much broader definition, in as much as it can be used to alleviate a number of adverse impacts due to industries, is the development of a green belt around industrial facilities. In addition to pollution control measures, the negative impacts due to industrial development should be further attenuated by the development of green belt. Green belts not only absorb air and water pollutants but also help in arresting noise and soil erosion, and creating favourable aesthetic conditions.

Table 6.5 Width of green belt for various industries




Area of works (ha)

Width of green belt


Heavy industry

Oil refineries, chemical works, metallurgical and seaport industries, nuclear reactors

> 500

<2 km


Heavy industry

Machine manufacture, ship-building, big harbour industries, power stations


>1 km


Medium-heavy industry with much air pollution

Manufacture of straw boards, artificial fibres, and ceramic products, cement works


500 m or more


Medium-heavy industry with little air pollution

Manufacture of cars, foods, and textiles

200 m or more


Light industry with some air pollution

Tanneries, textiles and food industries


50-100 m


Light industry with some air pollution

Manufacture of electronic apparatus and domestic machines


Service industry

Printing works, bakeries, laboratories




Workshops, handicrafts, etc.

Fashion studios, photoprinting shops, potteries



Adapted from Manual on Urban Air Quality, WHO Regional Publications, European Series No. 1, Copenhagen, 1976.

Guidelines on the width of green belt for various industries are listed in Table 6.5. The selection of plant species for the green belt is an important feature. It should be based on considerations of soil and agro-climatic conditions, and the types of pollutants emitted by the industry. The guiding principles for selection and placement of plant species within the green belt are presented in Table 6.6.

Table 6.6 Guiding principles for green belt development

1 Selection of plant species

• Plant species should be fast growing, perennial, and evergreen with thick canopy cover, large leaf index, and resistant to specified pollutants.

• Plant species should preferably be indigenous so that the ecological balance in the region could be preserved.

2 Placement of plant species

• Trees growing up to 10 m or more should be placed in encircling rows around the installation along road sides.

• Shrubs should be grown amongst the trees to give coverage to the tree trunks normally devoid of foliage.

• Differential zones for shrubs and trees could also be defined based on wind speed and stability conditions.

• Sensitive species should be placed in patches along the entire green belt.

3 Maintenance of green belt

• Wastewater from the industry should preferably be recycled for maintaining the green belt.