Environmental Impact Assessment: A Middle Eastern Experience

Mohammad A. Alomari, Raphael Heffron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Environmental impact assessment (EIA) is an important environmental protection tool introduced into the environmental governance framework to evaluate and inform the administrative decision-making processes regarding whether certain developments or projects are to be allowed. In this article, EIA’s legal status and procedure are examined in relation to a Middle Eastern context, specifically to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). Two different types of analysis are employed. The first is doctrinal analysis, focusing on the legal and statutory provisions regulating and organising this environmental protection tool—this genre of analysis entails identifying and unpacking the laws and regulations that govern this tool. The second type is qualitative analysis involving original data from 27 semi-structured interviews—one of the first of its kind on this topic in the KSA. The key contribution of the article comprises the examination and synthesis of the current status of different theories in the current international literature with regard to the underexplored issue of EIAs in the KSA.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbereqab002
JournalJournal of Environmental Law
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 May 2021


  • environmental impact assessment
  • Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
  • environmental governance
  • environmental law
  • EIA procedure/steps
  • screening
  • scoping
  • environmental statement
  • general environmental law
  • rules for implementation


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