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Advisory Council on the Environment

Report of the 44th
Environmental Impact Assessment Subcommittee Meeting

 

(ACE Paper 21/99)
for advice

INTRODUCTION

At its meeting of 7 June 1999, the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Subcommittee considered and endorsed the EIA Report of Tsuen Wan Bay Further Reclamation - Tang Lung Chau Dangerous Goods Anchorage.

ADVICE SOUGHT

2.Members are requested to advise whether the report mentioned above should be endorsed.

VIEWS OF THE SUBCOMMITTEE

Tsuen Wan Bay Further Reclamation - Tang Lung Chau Dangerous Goods Anchorage
(ACE EIA Paper 11/99)

3.The existing Tsuen Wan Dangerous Goods Anchorage in Tsuen Wan Bay is required to be relocated to make way for the proposed Tsuen Wan Bay Further Reclamation, which will provide land to meet the increase in the territorial housing demand. The proposed Tang Lung Chau Dangerous Goods Anchorage (TLCDGA) is a Designated Project under the EIA Ordinance, involving the construction of two breakwaters and dredging operation.

4.Major environmental issues identified in the EIA study include water quality, fuel spillage, ecology (including fishery) and hazard. For water quality, with the implementation of the recommended mitigation measures, the impacts could be controlled to within the established standards. Detailed hydraulic modelling were also carried out and the results indicated that the TLCDGA would not have adverse impacts on the tidal flow both locally and regionally.

5.Impacts due to chronic leakage and major oil spillage incidents have been assessed in the EIA study. The results indicated that under normal situation, any oil spillage would arrive at the nearest sensitive receivers in more than two hours which will allow sufficient response time for Marine Department's Oil Pollution Contingency Plan to arrive at scene and handle the spillage. Under the worst scenario, i.e. a worst combination of wind direction, current direction and tidal conditions, the spillage may reach the sensitive receivers within two hours. However, the risk of such worst case scenario was found to be of the order of once in 190 years which was considered to be within an acceptable level. The gazetted beach at Tung Wan has already been equipped with anti-oil pollution equipment which would provide additional protection to the beach.

6.The major ecological concerns are related to the potential impacts of water quality and fuel spillage on the Ma Wan Fish Culture Zone and the fishery resources in the vicinity. The layout of TLCDGA has been revised to avoid affecting the natural coastline on Tang Lung Chau, which is zoned as "Green Belt". As described above, the impacts could be controlled within the acceptable levels provided that the recommended mitigation measures are implemented. The potential hazard to life of the TLCDGA was assessed and found to be acceptable with regard to the Risk Guidelines.

Views and Recommendations of EIA Subcommittee's Members

7.Members discussed the report at the meeting. Queries mainly focussed on potential oil spillage incidents.

8.The project proponent confirmed that in terms of potential oil spillage, the assessment showed that the project was acceptable from a risk perspective. Relevant guidelines in the TM of the EIA Ordinance were followed. The estimated frequency of a major oil spill event and a comparatively minor one under the worst scenario which might affect sensitive receivers was as low as once in 2600 years and once in 190 years respectively. If such incidents occurred during the operation of the TLCDGA, they would be dealt with by the Marine Department as the managing department for the DGA.

9.The project proponent clarified that apart from preventing oil spreads outside the TLCDGA in case of spill incident, the configuration of the breakwaters had also taken into account the need for allowing sufficient manoeuvring space of navigation both inside and outside the TLCDGA as well as protecting the moorings against strong wind and wave action. The breakwaters were also designed to minimize the cumulative impacts on the tidal flow of the harbour. In response to Members' suggestion, the project proponent agreed to consider any further improvement to the habitat enhancing function of the breakwaters at the detailed design stage.

10.The project proponent undertook to consider making it a contractual obligation for the contractor to cease work and report to relevant authorities should in the unlikely event Chinese White Dolphins were sighted in the subject site during the construction period.

11.The Subcommittee agreed to recommend to the main Council to endorse the report without condition.

 

EIA Subcommittee Secretariat
June 1999


 

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