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Title: Environment impact assessment for the proposed drainage system development for flood control in the taro fields at Fiyoary Island, Gaafu Dhaal Atoll
Authors: CDE Consulting
Keywords: Project description
Policy and legal framework
Existing environment
Impacts and identification
Significant impacts and mitigation measures
Environmental management plan
Environmental monitoring plan
Stakeholder consultation
Issue Date: Dec-2012
Citation: CDE Consulting. (2012). Environment impact assessment for the proposed drainage system development for flood control in the taro fields at Fiyoary Island, Gaafu Dhaal Atoll. Male': Maldives
Abstract: The purpose of this document is to fulfil the requirements to get necessary environmental clearance from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to carry out the proposed Drainage system at Taro fields of GDh Fiyoary. The proponent of this project is Ministry of Fisheries and Agriculture The project is to bring many socio economic benefits to the people of Fiyoary as during flooding SW monsoon the wetland area where the Taro and Reed fields are present gets flooded damaging the crops. As Taro cultivating is a livelihood of most women in Fiyoary and Reed/Hau is used for traditional mat weaving it impacts the the whole mat weaving community, namely craftswomen from Rathafandhoo and Gadhoo. The project aims to ensure a drainage system that could manage the water in wetland during floods. All project activities will be in conformance to the laws and regulations of the Maldives, and relevant international conventions that Maldives is party to. The key laws and regulations applicable to this project are Environmental Protection and Preservation Act, Environmental Impact Assessment Regulation 2012. The project components are 1(mobilisation) equipment and construction materials will be brought to the project site, 2(Site preparation) this includes vegetation clearance and storage of construction equipment and machinery, (3) Drainage construction and decommissioning. The project duration is expected to be between 4-8 weeks and a total of 15 staffs are required for the construction works. Significant impacts that are expected to arise from the project include (1) impacts on groundwater, seawater and wetland water quality, (2) Health and safety risks as the working environment is a marshy land. (3) Loss of Terrestrial flora and fauna (4) Loss to biodiversity including birds. All these impacts can be minimized with proper mitigation measures recommended in the report. On the other hand, significant positive impacts to the local economy and traditional mat weaving community of Gadhoo and Rathafandhoo are also anticipated due to this project. The main mitigation measures include carrying out construction with propoer safety standards while following strict environmental protocols. This includes storage of oil and grease and other construction materials in proper bunded locations. Storing materials at a certain distance and proper supervision by an experienced professional at all times. Vegetation clearance impacts can be minimised by keeping the vegetation clearance to absolute minimum and replanting the removed vegetation where possible. Alternatives evaluated for project activities are alternative drainage pipe sites depending on the topography, alternative drainage pipeline network and alternative infiltration system design and size. The “No Project” option has also been explored but is not deemed preferable, due to the significant economic opportunities and environmental and economic impacts caused if the project does not proceed. The monitoring plan is designed to assess any changes to the ground water, wetland water quality and marine water quality. In addition to monitor impacts of expulsion of water to the marine environment beach profiles and reef health checks are included in the monitoring plan. The management plan for this project is designed to produce a framework for anticipated impacts, including practicable and achievable performance requirements and systems for monitoring, reporting and implementing corrective actions. In addition provide evidence of compliance to legislation, policies, guidelines and requirements of relevant authorities. In conclusion, this project has been designed in conformance to the relevant laws and regulations of Maldives. The most significant impacts are expected to be impacts on vegetation and ground water quality of the island. Anticipated long-term impacts of the operational phase can and should be managed by proper implementation of proposed mitigation measures. The project commencement is highly anticipated by the locals as the damage to Taro fields is an annual event which causes immeasurable damage to the island socioeconomically.
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