New Delhi– The Environment Ministry said on Thursday that it has provided a six-month window as a one-time opportunity to the units which have not obtained prior environmental clearance.

The ministry and the State Environment Impact Assessment Authorities (SEIAAs) had been receiving proposals for projects, which had expanded production beyond the limit of environmental clearance or changed the product mix without obtaining prior clearance, an official press release said.

It said the ministry issued the notification on March 14 to bring such projects and activities in compliance with the environment laws at the earliest.

According to the release, the notification primarily aims to provide a one-time opportunity of six months to apply for environmental clearance to units, which are in violation on date of the notification, i.e. March 14, 2017.

It said all cases of violation, irrespective of category, would be appraised as category “A” projects by respective sector Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) at the central level and violation cases could only be appraised at the level of the ministry.

The EAC would first see if the project or activity was a permissible activity, the release said.

“If it is not, then the recommendation of EAC will be for closure,” the release said.

It said no consent to operate or occupancy certificate would be issued till the project was granted environmental clearance.