In Dubai, obtaining a valid license is a crucial step before starting a business. In addition to the license, certain business activities in Dubai may also require external approvals from relevant authorities, like the Dubai Municipality. These approvals are necessary to ensure compliance with specific regulations and guidelines related to the nature of the business.

In this article, we focus on one of the key external approvals mandated by the Dubai Municipality for businesses engaged in Small, Light, and Heavy Industrial and Commercial activities within the Emirate: Environmental Clearance.

Let’s delve into the details and explore the process and significance of these external approvals.


  1. What is an environmental clearance (EC)?
  2. What is an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)?
  3. Documents required to obtain an Environmental Clearance in Dubai
  4. Securing an Environmental Clearance in Dubai
  5. Why AAKI?


  1. What is an environmental clearance (EC)?

In Dubai, obtaining an Environmental Clearance is essential for activities with potential environmental impact. The process involves submitting an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report to Dubai Municipality. This report ensures compliance with environmental legislation and standards in Dubai, covering aspects like air and water quality, waste management, noise levels, and ecology. By obtaining Environmental Clearance, businesses demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and responsible operations. The environmental clearance also serves like as Permit-to-Operate for industrial facility.


  1. What is an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)?

An EIA is a systematic planning process for identifying, predicting, analyzing and managing the potential environmental impacts (positive and negative) of a project on the environment and the potential effects of the environment on the project.

As per the Dubai Municipality, an environmental clearance can only be issued once  The purpose of an EIA is to provide an independent assessment of a Project’s potential environmental impacts to enable authorities and relevant stakeholders to understand and prevent or reduce the potential adverse impacts of the project before making decisions on whether Environmental Clearance (EC) for the Project will be granted.

Writing an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a complex process that requires in-depth knowledge of environmental regulations and expertise in assessing potential impacts.


  1. Documents required to obtain an Environmental Clearance in Dubai

To obtain environmental clearance for an industrial business setup in Dubai, it is important to have the following documents ready:

  1. Registration and Licensing Application
  2. Trade name reservation certificate
  3. Initial approval inquiry or DED follow-up receipt
  4. Details of business site location from DE and stamped by DM-Planning Department
  5. Environmental Impact Assessment for industrial activities based on the type of activities
  6. Tenancy Contract (Initial Contract) or Valid Ejari
  7. Site affection Plan
  8. Ministry of Economy’s initial approval
  9. Business working permit for all activities related to the Waste Management Department


  1. Securing an Environmental Clearance in Dubai


In accordance with Federal Law No. (24) of 1999 concerning the Protection and Development of the Environment, and Cabinet Decree No. (27) of 2021 from the Council of Ministers, no initiation of activity in development or infrastructure projects is permissible without the acquisition of an environmental license, secured through the execution of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).

Moreover, any modifications to the development or infrastructure projects, establishments, or activities, which are projected to yield significant environmental consequences, must also be preceded by obtaining the Environmental Clearance (EC). This Environmental Clearance is bestowed upon development or infrastructure projects that successfully fulfill the EIA prerequisites. This issuance of the Environmental Clearance is carried out by the Dubai Municipality Environmetnal Sustainability Department (DM-ESD).


Process of Obtaining an Environmental Clearance (EC) – Dubai Municipality (DM)

The DM-ESD engages in a review and assessment process for Environmental Impact Assessment Reports (EIAR) within a maximum timeframe of twenty (20) working days, while Environmental Impact Assessment Statements (EIAS), the process is completed within no more than fifteen (15) working days.

The subsequenct and final stage of this process involves the DM-ESD’s determination of the Environmental Clearance application. This determination is grounded in the evaluation outcomes of the submitted EIAR and EIAS. The ultimate decision materializes in one of the ensuing options:

  1. Approval, leading to the issuance of an Environmental Clearance (EC)
  2. Revision – In case the submitted EIA document necessitates amendment, DM-ESD will furnish review remarks, request clarifications, or solicit supplementary information through the application system, along with a referenced Comment Resolution Sheet (CRS), which will be reviewed by the approved consultant and submitted.


Process of Obtaining an Environmental Clearance (EC) – Ports, Customs, and Freezone Corporation (PCFC)

All endeavors encompass by Ports, Customs and Freezone Corporation (PCFC), Jebel Ali Freezone Authority (JAFZA), and Dubai World Business Units, which entail prospective significant environmental ramifications, are obligated to undertake Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) studies. Among the various spectrum of development initiatives, those related to industrial undertakings and land/marine expansion exert a notable influence on society and the environment, encompassing both advantageous and adverse effects.


  1. Why AAKI?

As a business owner, your time and resources are valuable, and navigating the intricacies of an EIA can be overwhelming. That’s why it makes perfect sense for you to enlist the services of AAKI Consultants and Studies for your EIA needs. With our extensive experience and expertise in conducting EIAs, we can ensure that your EIA is comprehensive, accurate, and meets all the necessary requirements for securing environmental clearance. AAKI Consultants and Studies will handle the entire process efficiently, saving you valuable time and ensuring compliance with environmental regulations.


Don’t let the complexities of writing an EIA hold you back. Choose AAKI Consultants and Studies for a hassle-free and successful environmental clearance process.