|Abstract: ||Mr. Mohamed Saeed of M. Snowflakes has proposed to develop a farming project on Aidhoo
Island located in Baa Atoll. As part of the project, it is proposed to undertake different types of
farming methods by using modern technology including setting up of a vertical farm,
hydroponics farm, orchid farm and container farm. Separate plots will be developed for each
farming method where lettuce, tomato, melon, chili, cucumber, bell pepper, etc are proposed
to be produced. The project will be developed with all support facilities, services and
This EIA is prepared as per the Terms of Reference (TOR) approved by Environment
Protection Agency (EPA) on 19 October 2016. For such development projects, a mandatory
EIA is required as per the EIA Regulations of 2012 before commencement of any activity
relating to the project.
The scope of this EIA is to assess the existing environmental condition of Aidhoo Island and
surrounding environment, identify potential environmental impacts, propose environmental
management and mitigation measures to minimize environmental impacts as well as propose
an environmental monitoring plan with appropriate environmental parameters to monitor
changes on a regular basis.
Aidhoo Island is located at 5°11'13.73"N and 73°9'48.93"Eand is found on the eastern
periphery of Baa Atoll rim in a single reef system. The island is found on the western parts of
the reef in an elliptical shape similar to the reef and has an orientation from E-W. The closest
inhabited island is Dhonfanu located at 4.2km west, the closest tourist resort is Kihaad
Maldives located at 3km west and the closes uninhabited island is Hanifaru Island found within
Hanifaru Marine Protected Area located at 1.5km SW of Aidhoo. The Domestic Airport in
Dhravandhoo is found 4.5km south. The island is about 280m long from the longest point and
115m wide from the widest point and has an approximate area of 2.3ha. The island has healthy
vegetation in the middle parts and young and pioneering vegetation all around it. A dynamic
sand spit is found on the western tip of the island while surf breaks are found on the eastern
side of the island.
During the construction period, key environmental impacts are believed to occur from site
clearing and construction waste disposal.
During operation a number of significant environmental impacts have also been envisaged
including solid waste disposal and inappropriate methods of wastewater disposal from the
island will generate long-term impacts on the environment including effects on island
environment, changes in reef community structure, damage to coral reefs and degraded
seawater quality, etc
The socio-economic impacts of the proposed development have been identified to be mostly
positive. These include, opening of new employment opportunities, contribution to improving
living standards of nearby communities through direct and indirect economic benefits,
development of skills as well as contribution to the local economy from the above.
In order to mitigate and reduce environmental impacts from the proposed project, key
considerations have been given to minimize vegetation clearance on island for facilities and
farming development, development of an appropriate waste management center with
equipment and staff.
An Environmental Monitoring Plan, which will be implemented during construction and
operation phases of the development will be undertaken. An environmental monitoring report
will be prepared twice a year, which will be submitted to relevant government authorities.
Although there are a number of environmental impacts from the proposed development, most
of these impacts can be reduced and mitigated by use of appropriate methodology. The
effectiveness of these methodologies can be documented by implementing a comprehensive
monitoring programme. Also, with positive social and economic outlook of the project and
considering the overall contribution of the project to local and national economies, it is
concluded that the project could be undertaken.|