The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) is established under the Environmental Management and Coordination Act (EMCA) No. 8 of 1999, as the principal instrument of government in the implementation of all policies relating to the environment.
The Authority became operational on 1st July 2002 following the merger of three government departments, namely: the National Environment Secretariat (NES), the Permanent Presidential Commission on Soil Conservation and Afforestation (PPCSCA), and the Department of Resource Surveys and Remote Sensing (DRSRS). However, following government restructuring in March 2003, DRSRS reverted to its departmental status under the then Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MENR). There was a transition period characterised by the integration of previous departmental activities and appointment of the first Board of Management.