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Title: Environmental impact assessment for the setup of two RO plants in Guraidhoo Island, South Male’ Atoll, Maldives
Authors: Water Solutions
Keywords: Project setting
Project description
Environmental impacts
Existing environment of Maldives
Stakeholder consultations
Environmental monitoring and management plan
Issue Date: Jun-2013
Citation: Water Solutions. (2013). Environmental impact assessment for the setup of two RO plants in Guraidhoo Island, South Male’ Atoll, Maldives . Male': Maldives
Abstract: This report discusses the findings of an environmental impact assessment undertaken by Water Solutions Pvt. Ltd. for the setup of two RO plants in Guraidhoo Island, South Male’ Atoll. The objective of this project is to setup two RO plants each with a capacity of 30 tons and provide water for the institution, “Home for people with special needs” through a pipeline. After the setup, the RO plant will be handed to the Island Council for operation and maintenance. The island community of Guraidhoo has a population of approximately 1700 (Guraidhoo Island Counci, 2013) and rely on rainwater harvesting for drinking and cooking while groundwater is used for most other purposes such as bathing, ablution, laundry and cleaning (Guraidhoo Island Counci, 2013). Although rainwater is the main source, the storage of rainwater is inadequate to meet the water demands throughout the year, especially in dry periods from Jan to April. Guraidhoo is home to the institution, Home for people with special needs” where people with special needs are cared and looked after. Together with staff members, there are a total of 300 people (200 patients and 100 staff) based in the institution. Adequate and safe drinking water is one of the issues faced by the institution. The neighbouring resort island of Holiday Inn and another Charity organization has donated two RO plants, which is the main reason for initiating this project. The project involves three (3) major components, namely setting up the two RO plant of 30 tons per day, provision of desalinated water through a pipeline to the “ Home for people with special needs” and lastly training and handing over the project to the Island Council. This project will be implemented by Male’ Water and Sewerage Company (MWSC). The purpose of this EIA is to identify all significant environmental and social impacts. The project aims to setup the two RO plants which has been given as donations and provide water to the “Home for people with special needs” . Although the Island Council has plans to expand the piped network throughout the island, it is not part of this project. In order to undertake the study, baseline environmental and stakeholder consultations were undertaken in Guraidhoo as well as with the proponent (MWSC). A rapid groundwater sampling survey from selected locations were undertaken to assess the baseline quality of groundwater. The results of these are discussed in the relevant sections. A detail marine environmental survey was undertaken to understand the status of the coral reef / lagoon on the south east side where the brine discharge pipe has been proposed. The project does not anticipate any major negative environmental issues, but rather have been found to have many positive as well as uncertain social impacts. Discharge of concentrated brine and the increase in energy use has been identified as the most important negative impact as far as the environment is considered. While the project will benefit more than 300 people based in the “Home for people with special needs”, at this stage, the project does not seem to have any benefits to the island community. The present population of Guraidhoo will not benefit from implementing this project This project will have several benefits to a specific target group, namely for the institution, “Home for people with special needs”. Access to safe water for the institution will definitely bring improvements to the public health and standard of service in the institution. Although this project does not include a water supply network for the entire island, it is anticipated that the project will stimulate an island wide water supply network with individual household connections. The benefits of this project will be felt only for a selected group in Guraidhoo Island.
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