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Title: Environmental impact assessment for the construction and setup of an island sewerage system in Meedhoo Island, Raa Atoll, Maldives
Authors: Water Solutions
Keywords: Sewerage systems
Existing marine environment
Existing terrestrial environment
Existing socio-economic environment
Environmental impacts
Mitigation measures
Environmental management and monitoring plan
Environmental impact assessments
Issue Date: Jul-2014
Citation: Water Solutions. (2014). Environmental impact assessment for the construction and setup of an island sewerage system in Meedhoo Island, Raa Atoll, Maldives. Male': Maldives
Abstract: This report discusses the findings of an environmental impact study undertaken by Water Solutions Pvt. Ltd in order to fulfill obligatory requirements of the National Environment Protection and Preservation Act, Law No. 4/93 for the proposed setup of the sewerage system (hereafter referred to as the project) in Meedhoo island, Raa Atoll, Maldives. The purpose of this EIA is to identify and minimize potential adverse environmental impacts related to this project and enhance the overall quality of the project. By examining the project location, the legal framework and the existing environmental components such as marine ecology and the socio-economic aspects, this EIA provides useful information regarding the extent, nature and the magnitude of impacts that are likely to occur. The EIA will also help to identify the long term socio-economic benefits to the community after implementing this project. It also provides a framework for future monitoring of the environment, so that changes can be monitored and corrective measures can be undertaken. The proposed project aims to establish an island wide sewerage collection and disposal system. At present household wastewater is disposed on site by the use of septic tanks and this has contributed to the contamination of the groundwater to a state that it cannot be utilized. There are also several private sewer main pipes laid in the main roads which outfalls into the shallow lagoon by gravity. This is a basic system of pipes that was constructed at the community level, but without any proper assessment or design. The project therefore involves the following components: a) Installation of an island wide sewage collection network. b) Installation of new catch pits for each house / institution. c) Construction of pump stations in strategic locations to collect and convey raw sewage from the households and to the final disposal station. d) Construction of a sea outfall. The proposed project will ensure that the groundwater of the island does not get contaminated through improper sanitation systems. It will also ensure that the surrounding marine environment will improve in terms of environmental quality and will ensure pollution from sewage does not occur on the near shore environments. EIA for the construction and setup of an island sewerage system in Raa Atoll Page 14 The project is expected to bring several positive impacts on the environmental quality of the island and the surrounding reef. Particularly, the most significant benefit would be achieved through improvement in the groundwater quality. The health benefits of the project are also worthy of noting as the improvement in water quality are going to bring significant health benefits to the community. Various alternatives to the proposed system were also studied. One of the options identified include deep bore well disposal and gravity systems among others. Based on the assessment, these alternatives were assessed to identify their potential application in the island against the proposed system.
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