The result of the mineral and energy resources extraction activities and the environmental damage they induced gave way to activity regulation by the countries, in what environmental performance is concerned, both in the perspective of remediation and prevention of environmental impact. The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is the main instrument of this strategy.

The EIA includes a summarized project description, the identification and evaluation of the probable, positive and negative, impacts, that its implementation may have in the environment, the predictable evolution of the present situation if the project is not implemented, and the environmental management to avoid, minimize and compensate the negative impacts expected, as well as the measures to enhance positive impacts, the description of the monitoring plan, the final recommendations and conclusions that are the outcome of the document.

In the EIA several environmental issues are considered, depending on how they are addressed in the project’s typology and of the specific features of the implementation site. Despite of others that may become necessary, the main aspects of the EIA are: Climate, geology and geomorphology, soil and soil use, surface and underground water resources, water quality air quality, environmental noise, flora, vegetation and habitats, fauna and biotopes, landscape, land use planning, social and economic context, and archeological and built heritage. The environmental evaluation within the EIA focuses on the implementation, exploitation, deactivation and post-deactivation phases of the mine or quarry.

The outcome of the assessment are a set of actions to be undertaken through all the implementation, exploitation, deactivation and post-deactivation process of the mining project, of which highlights the periodic monitoring of the activities to be developed and the associated environmental impacts.