Environmental Management Agency
IndustryEnvironmental Management
HeadquartersHarare, Zimbawbwe

Envrinonmental Management Agency EMA is a statutory body responsible for

  • Ensuring the sustainable management of natural resources
  • Protection of the environment
  • The prevention of pollution and environmental degradation
  • The preparation of Environmental Plans for the management and protection of the environment.

It was established under the Environmental Management Act [Chapter 20:27] and enacted in 2002.

Services Offered By EMA

  1. Licensing of Mines
  2. Licensing of substances movement
  3. Licensing of Waste Management Effluents
  4. Monitoring of Environment
  5. Soil Testing
  6. Lab Tests for Pollution (air quality, etc.)
  7. Environmental Practitioner Registration
  8. CleanUp Registration
  9. Water Testing Services
  10. Environmental Reporting
  11. Environmental Inspection
  12. Environmental Incidents Management
  13. Environmental Licensing / Permit

NSSA Staff Organisational Chart

Organogram EMA

NSSA Projects

Community Based Organisations

The Environmental Management Agency through the Environmental Planning and Monitoring (EPM) unit has established Community-Based Organisations (CBOs). This is in line with the Agency’s initiative to protect the environment at the same time providing a livelihood option to communities. The Agency then added value to these groups by including a livelihood sustenance component under the theme “Converting Trash to Cash”.

Local Action Environmental Action Plans (LEAP)

EMA since 2003 been embarking on training activities aimed at capacitating local authorities on the production of Local Environmental Action Plans. The process involves all relevant key stakeholders, NGOs, government institutions, business people, CBOs, councillors and local authorities coming together and identifying the environmental challenges they face in their communities and work together to solve them.

Coping with drought and climate change Project

EMA Partnered with UNDP/GEF and supported “Coping with Drought and Climate Change Project” is a five year (2008 – 2012) initiative implemented in Chiredzi district. The primary goal of the project is to enhance the capacity for adaptation to climate change amongst Chiredzi residents

Wetland Restoration and utilization projects

Project component includes:

  • Rehabilitation of degraded wetlands
  • Establishment of consolidated gardens
  • Bee keeping

Tsholotsho Small Grain Project

EMA created the project to create a food safety net in drought situations reducing people’s livelihoods dependency from a natural resource.

Rushinga Environmental Management and Education Programme

This project aims to promote volunteerism and public education in environmental management for combating desertification

Uzumba Maramba Pfungwe Small Grain Project

This project was designed to create a food safety net in drought situations reducing people’s livelihoods dependency from natural resource

Mapembe Mountain ecosystem protection project

This project aims to protect mountain ecosystems to the benefit of the local communities.[1]



Following a story in February 2023 about EMA ordering a Harare resident to pay a fine of ZWL$100 000 for illegally operating “an air polluting appliance (generator) without a licence”, a lot of discussion resulted on social media on the regulations around generators.

According to the Environmental Management Authority, one needs a licence to operate a generator over 100kVA. And there is a fixed penalty of (ZWL$100 000), prescribed in terms of Section 64 of the Environmental Management Authority Act. According to a notice issued by EMA, owners of generators with an installed capacity of 100kW and above should be licenced. It reads in part: … it is necessary that all standby generators in Zimbabwe be registered with the Authority and all operators of generators with an installed capacity of 100kW and above be licensed, so that safety compliance can be monitored. This is therefore to notify and advice the public that in terms of the law under the said Act:
a) All owners of electricity generators equipment are required to register their generators with the Authority.
b) All operators of generating equipment of installed capacity of 100 kW and above are required in terms of Section 40 of the Act, to apply to the Authority for a licence.
c) Companies operating private distribution networks should, in terms of Section 40 of the Act, apply to the Authority for a licence to operate such networks.

Comments on social media noted two sets of laws had been conflated on regulations in respect of generators.

  • ZERA requires all generators of 100kVA and above to be registered with them.
  • EMA requires all companies operating generators to apply for emissions licences from them and have those emissions tested periodically per section 64 of the EMA Act.

Application form is File:Zerapp.pdf

The Environmental Management Agency also responded. It is not correct that EMA licences operation of any generator above 5kVA. (Generally domestic generators). Section 64 of the Environmental Management Act (Cap 20:27) says, “No owner or operator of a trade or any establishment shall emit a substance or energy which causes or is likely to cause air pollution without an emission licence", clearly indicating that this is an operation at commercial level or for industrial use. The appliance of operation is further buttressed under Statutory Instrument 72 of 2009 (Environmental Management [Atmospheric Pollution Control] Regulations, 2009), where an appliance means any stationary fuel-burning appliance or apparatus which is capable of consuming more than 5 kilograms per hour of fuel or other combustible matter, whether such fuel or combustible matter is in a solid, liquid or gaseous state.

This legislation which sought to prevent air pollution and ensure members of the public enjoy access to clean environment (air) which is not harmful to health as enshrined in the Constitution of Zimbabwe and the Environmental Management Act (Chapter 20:27). Also prevention of air pollution dovetails towards the fight against climate change where as a country we want to achieve our Nationally Determined Contributions(NDCs),of 40 percent per capita emissions reduction across all sectors of the economy below the projected business as usual scenario by 2030.

They wish members of the public to engage the Agency through its various platforms including its website www.ema.co.zw when not understanding certain environmental law implications, or Amkela Sidange, Environmental Education and Publicity Manager, 263772934384/712264631. [2]


  1. EMA, Project, Retrieved 10 October 2019
  2. Zimbabweans Must Apply For A Licence To Operate Generators Above 100kW, Pindula, Published: 12 February 2023, Retrieved: 13 February 2023