The governments of Egypt and Denmark had initiated the DANIDA-funded Environmental Sector Program (ESP) in 2001, which included three main components: Communication in Environmental Management (CEM), Achieving Compliance in Industry (ACI), and Support to Decentralization of Environmental Management.
ESP contracted Environics to provide technical support to the Task Force (TF) of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA), which is concerned with the decentralization of environmental management (DEM).
The members of this TF were EEAA top managers, particularly those involved in the coordination and cooperation with local and central entities responsible for environmental actions.
Environics was assigned the task of technical assistance to ESP on the development of a Decentralization Strategy. This task complemented the support Environics had provided the TF with on the formulation of a vision, methodology, preliminary action plan and institutional arrangements for DEM over two years (2004-2006).
Environics focused on analyzing the DEM status at the time to indicate barriers and constraints, and identify the elements of the strategic vision. The DEM strategy proposed endorsing institutional, legal, administrative, and fiscal reforms to restructure the environmental functions of relevant entities at the central, regional, and local levels.
The strategy was presented to EEAA for ratification, and several meetings were held with the concerned entities and stakeholders to investigate the potential tools for its operationalization.
Sub-working groups resulted from these meetings and followed standard procedures to prepare action plans for operationalizing the strategy. Pilot projects supporting the DEM strategic vision were executed to test the action plans.