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Title: Environmental impact assessment for proposed redevelopment development of Kudahithi Island Resort, North Male’ Atoll, Maldives
Authors: Water Solutions
Keywords: Development concept and built environment
Environmental design considerations
Site planning
Guest facilities
Staff facilities
Upgrading of existing facilities
Redevelopment component
Existing environment
Environmental Impacts
Environmental management and monitoring
Issue Date: 1-Jun-2010
Citation: Water Solutions. (2010). Environmental impact assessment for proposed redevelopment development of Kudahithi Island Resort, North Male’ Atoll, Maldives. Male': Maldives
Abstract: This report discusses the findings of an environmental impact study undertaken by Water Solutions Pvt. Ltd. upon request from Sun Land Pvt. Ltd in order to fulfill obligatory requirements of the National Environment Protection and Preservation Act, Law No. 4/93 for the redevelopment of Kudahithi island resort in Male’ Atoll, Maldives. This project is proposed by Sunland Hotels to develop; A Master Residence, 2 support Bungalows, Main Pavilion, staff centre, service centre, mosque, desalinated water storage tanks, fuel storage tanks and undertake coastal protection and beach nourishment to replenish the lost beach at the island as part of the redevelopment project. The project also requires demolishing the existing buildings on land and the removal of the columns that had been placed in the water. These facilities will be developed in such that it blends with the natural setting of the island without disturbing the island’s natural setting. All buildings and walkways are planned to avoid disrupting major trees to the greatest extent possible to ensure conservation of trees. Walking tracks are made as narrow as possible in order to minimize the impacts on the island vegetation. Buildings on the coastal zone are planned as such that the natural hydrodynamics of the coastal zone is not affected. This report has identified that the impacts of the project will be felt on the terrestrial environment as almost all the new structures proposed will be on land. The impact on the marine environment will be felt through the coastal protection and beach nourishment component and the removal of the columns that had been placed in the lagoon. The direct impact on the marine environment would be the sedimentation and siltation caused by the construction activities in the lagoon during the construction period. Baseline data has, therefore, been collected in order to monitor the changes to the marine environment which need to be identified in periodical monitoring reports. The most significant impact will be felt on the lagoon bottom. Other impacts during the construction period are impacts related to construction waste, dust emission and impacts related to temporary workforce. Operational impacts are expected to be related to energy generation, water production and solid waste and wastewater generation. Details of these impacts are discussed in the relevant sections. The mitigation plan has identified appropriate measures to minimize the identified impacts from the proposed redevelopment at the island of Kudahithi. These measures reflect the general aspects of the construction phase for the resort that involves both land and marine based development activities. Important measures that will be undertaken to minimize the damage on the ecosystem include, better pre-planning during the construction stage and minimizing cutting of trees during construction stage, especially young trees among other measures. The conceptual design of the resort has already been planned so as to minimize the amount of trees that will be cut or removed. In the operation phase, the emphasis will be to minimize the impact due to operation and guest activities on to the environment. An Environmental Management Plan for the operation need to be developed to integrate environment protection and conservation into the operation of the island. In the operation stage of the development, staff awareness programmes could be in place and activities to increase the environmental awareness to the guest and to minimize the environmental impact due to the tourist activities will be undertaken. Alternatives to the project have also been considered and several alternatives to the proposed project were considered, including alternative methods for construction and alternative locations. The advantages and disadvantages of these alternatives have been discussed. Towards, the end of the report, a monitoring programme has been suggested which mainly covers the marine environment. These include coral cover and marine water quality among many other parameters. As the impacts are felt on the marine environment, it is important to undertake this monitoring.
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