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Title: Environmental assessment on proposed beach nourishment and environmental audit on desalination and power generation activities, Vakarufalhi Island Resort, South Ari Atoll, Maldives
Authors: Sandcays
Keywords: Beach nourishment
Power generation facilities
Legislative and regulatory considerations
Physical environment
Biological environment
Work environment
Marine environment
Environmental impacts
Mitigation measures
Environmental monitoring
Environmental impact assessments
Environmental audit
Issue Date: Jul-2011
Citation: Sandcays. (2011). Environmental assessment on proposed beach nourishment and environmental audit on desalination and power generation activities, Vakarufalhi Island Resort, South Ari Atoll, Maldives. Male': Maldives
Abstract: This report is on two components including an environmental audit on existing desalination and power generation facilities and environmental impact assessment of proposed beach nourishment in Vakarufalhi Island Resort. The audit addresses the environmental concerns of the existing desalination plant and power generation facilities in Vakarufalhi Island resort. The primary objective of the audit exercise is to renew desalination plant registration. Having an environmental clearance statement is a requirement the registration of desalination plants. There is one seawater desalination plant with daily production capacity 300m3 in which feed water intake and brine concentrate discharge is on the eastern side of the island. The overall performance of the desalination plant in Vakarufalhi Island Resort is adequate and acceptable. The electrical conductivity of product water was found at 50μS/cm and no coliforms were detected from product water. The groundwater quality in terms of salinity was found at 1,700μS/cm (considered as measure of salinity); this shows the aquifer is normal. Total estimated area of proposed beach filling is at 3,140m2 with an estimated volume of sand to be filled at 4,710m3. This estimation is based on the existing beach condition at the time this survey was undertaken. A monitoring program has been outlined at the end of the report which can be implemented for environmental quality improvement and informed decision making. In particular of water quality monitoring and daily log maintenance at plant site. The overall performance of the seawater desalination facility and powerhouse in Vakarufalhi Island Resort is at adequate and acceptable condition. Key aspects of the operations are in compliance to desalination plant registration regulations in Maldives. Noise emissions meet the requirements of Maldives Energy Authority and acceptable standards. The overall environmental impacts of the proposed beach nourishment indicated that there continuous beach nourishment at Vakarufalhi does not have major adverse impacts on the environment as far as current knowledge is concerned. Given that the project has major socio-economic benefits and some environmental benefits, it is advisable to allow the project to proceed as proposed. It is also recommended to continue to monitor the impacts of the proposed project by regular monitoring of shorelines, beach profiles and nearshore currents for at least two years and communicate and feed the data into the EIA system in the country.
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