Environmental Impact Assessments, Land Use, Inspections, Constitutional, Evidence, Standing, Wildlife

In this case, the plaintiff is an association representing the interest of the tourism industry in Belize and is challenging the decision of the National Environmental Appraisal Committee and of the Department of Environment to approve the Environmental Impact Assessment for the construction of a port at the Island of Harvest Caye as well as a cruise ship day resort on the mainland waterfront site of Malacate.

The plaintiffs challenged the decision accepting the Environmental Impact Assessment on the basis that it did not follow the appropriate procedure and that the protestations of the local communities were not taken into consideration because the environmental impact assessment was not made public until the last minute and the procedure did not allow adequate time for the public to comment it.

The Supreme Court held that even if there were some irregularities in the public consultation procedure and that there were a couple of breaches of the environmental impact assessment legislation; those violations were minor and could not be considered to be enough to render the decision null and void.