Through Resolutions No. 447 and 448 of May 20, 2020, the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development issued the terms of reference for the preparation of the Environmental Impact Assessment - EIA, required for the processing of the global or definitive environmental license to small mining projects and for the processing of the temporary environmental license for mining formalization.
It is worth remembering that small-scale mining is carried out with simple tools and implements of manual use, carried out by human force. Likewise, the mining formalization process is presented as a strategy of the national government that seeks to provide and accompany the small-scale miner on the road to formalizing its activity.
Thus, by issuing the terms of reference for the drafting of the EIA for the activities described, the Ministry of the Environment exercises its legal right outlined in article 184.108.40.206.3.2 of Decree 1076 of 2015 and in article 22 of the Law 1955 of 2019.
Additionally, a transition regime was established, and it consists as follows:
a. For the traditional mining formalization requests presented before the entry into force of the resolution that included an Environmental Management Plan, it will not be necessary to submit an later EIA, therefore the temporary environmental license will be granted based on said plan.
If the Environmental Management Plan has been already approved, this will be the environmental instrument of management and control that will rule the process, consequently there will be no need to apply for license.
b. For traditional mining formalization requests that did not submit an environmental management plan before May 25, 2019, there will have a term of three (3) months to provide the environmental impact assessment and the application for an environmental license for the formalization request, counted from the day following the entry into force of this resolution.