Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Receiving Terminal and Associated Facilities
- Further Information Requested by EPD -
In the EIA report the transit of the LNG Carrier via the west of Lantau was not considered as a viable alternative due to water depth constraints. The following text appears in Part 3, Section 13, Sub-section 3 Page 6.
alternative approach to Black Point via the western side of
CAPCO understand that the Tonggu Channel
Project was proposed 14 May 2003 () and an EIA for the section of the route
Figure 1 – Previous Alignment of Tonggu Channel passing through HKSAR Waters
The details of the project as it stood in the Project Profile for the EIA were as shown in Table 1 below.
Table 1 Characteristics of the Tonggu Channel Development
Roughly 20% of the dredging was proposed
“…the Project will likely affect substantially the marine environment including the Chinese White Dolphin and other marine life, thus putting them under high ecological risk when the project is being constructed and in operation.”
CAPCO understands that a new alignment has been proposed by the Tonggu Channel Project Proponent which is now entirely in Mainland waters, as shown on Figure 2 below () .
Figure 2 – Present Alignment of Tonggu
Channel (hatched area is the
CAPCO understands that this new alignment is a unidirectional channel with a width of 210m and a depth of -15.8m PD. The majority of the 20 km route falls within the core area of the Pearl River Estuary Chinese White Dolphin Nature Reserve. Under the regulations for this Nature Reserve any “destructive activities” are prohibited in this area’. The Reserve is governed by a Protected Area Management Board. The initial dredging volume is around 50 Mm3 with a recurrent annual maintenance dredging volume of 2.6 Mm3 per year.
As stated above the channel is at present unidirectional with a width of 210m. Although the depth of the channel is sufficient, additional dredging would be required to increase the width of the channel so that it meets with the PIANC guideline of a minimum width of 250m. Also the PIANC guidelines indicate that for safety reasons a 400m bidirectional channel is preferred.
The additional dredging associated with widening the channel to 250m would be approximately 10 Mm3. There would also be the need to conduct incremental annual maintenance dredging of 0.5 Mm3 per year for the lifetime of the LNG terminal. Given the presence of the Pearl River Estuary Chinese White Dolphin Nature Reserve, CAPCO would have concerns regarding the incremental impacts that this dredging work would pose.
If the Black Point option incorporated the
Tonggu Waterway then the total initial dredging volume of this option would
increase to 13.15 Mm3 which is extremely high when compared to the
In conclusion, while a carefully managed and short term marine construction program can be compatible within a potential marine reservation area, such as the waters of Southwestern Lantau, the incremental dredging associated with incorporating the Tonggu Waterway into the Black Point option makes it less favourable for environmental reasons when compared to the South Soko option due to the environmental impacts associated with significantly greater and more frequent dredging requirements.
The Landscape Impacts on
2, Section 11.10 (page 28)
summarises the un-mitigated landscape impacts that the LNG Terminal would have
on the Landscape Resources (LRs) of
Mitigation measures are proposed in Section
11.11 (pages 29-31) and are illustrated in Figure 11.20. The resulting residual impacts on
the 12 Landscape Resources after year 10 of mitigation measures are not
expected to result in any Significant or Moderate/Significant
impacts on any of the LRs. There
will be moderate impacts on the
The un-mitigated impacts on the Landscape Character Areas (LCAs) are analysed in Section 11.18, (pages 91-92). There will be a Significant impact on the Islands Landscape, Moderate/Significant impacts on the Inshore Waters landscape, a Moderate impact on the Offshore Waters Landscape, and a Slight/Moderate impact on the Abandoned Institutional Landscape.
Mitigation measures are proposed in Section 11.19 (pages 93-94) and are illustrated in Figure 11.20. In addition to these mitigation measures, Section 11.19.1 details avoidance measures that also reduce the impact on the LCAs including the reduction of the extent of the reclamation, the clustering of the tanks closer together, the positioning of the tanks behind the hill at the northern end of South Soko and an overall reduction in the total area of the terminal.
As a result of these mitigations measures, all of the impacts on the LCAs will reduce in one order of significance threshold. There will therefore be a Moderate/Significant impact on the Islands Landscape, a Moderate impact on the Inshore Waters landscape, a Slight/Moderate impact on the Offshore Waters Landscape, and a Slight impact on the Abandoned Institutional Landscape.
The visual impacts arising from the development are described in Section 11.13.11 (Pages 48-78). Visual Mitigation Measures are proposed in Section 11.14 (page 79). The LNG Terminal has been carefully designed to minimize its potential visual impacts. In particular the LNG tanks which are the largest and most visible element, have been located at the base of the hill at the northern end of the island to minimize their visibility.
Of the 15 Visually Sensitive Receivers (VSRs) analysed in the study, only marine visitors off South Soko Island will experience a Significant impact with visitors to North Soko Island experiencing a Moderate/Significant impact. Both of these VSRs are located in close proximity to the LNG Terminal and experience low visitor numbers.
Due to the large distance between the LNG
According to the Technical Memorandum on the Environmental Impact Assessment Process (EIAO-TM) the Landscape and Visual Impacts are considered acceptable with mitigation.
Attached to this document are Figures demonstrating the above points in further clarity. These figures are:
• Figure 1 – Further information on Landscape Resource Mitigation
• Figure 2 – Further information on Landscape Character Mitigation
• Figure 3 - Further information on Landscape Character Mitigation
Figure 4 – Photomontage from
• Figure 5 – Photomontage from Big Buddha
Figure 6 - Photomontage from
Figure 7 - Photomontage from
Figure 8 - Photomontage from
Please See Attachment 2.
The impacts of underwater noise on marine mammals have been discussed at length in the EIA report. Sections of relevance are 9.7.1 page 43 and pages 47-50. The conclusion was that with specific mitigation measures (Section 9.9.2) and additional (precautionary) measures in place (Section 9.10) adverse residual impacts from underwater sound generation are not expected to occur.
Cooling Water System
Underwater sound at the intake head will be minimal as water will flow through the intake by means of gravity. The only sound generated through extraction of seawater will be from the pumphouse, which will be located on existing land within the LNG terminal footprint. On this basis, disturbance to marine ecology, such as cetaceans, through underwater sound generated by the seawater intake and outfall system is not expected to occur. It is is also considered important to note that the findings of a two year marine mammal survey, the results of which are presented in the Annexes to Section 9, indicate that very few sightings of marine mammals have been made in the direct vicinity of either the intake or outfall systems.
Regarding the potential impacts to fish
eggs and juvenile fish as a result of seawater extraction for the operation of
the LNG terminal at
In addition, the maximum volume of water
proposed to be extracted for the operation of the seawater intake is
approximately 18,000m3 hr-1, which is similar in scale to
the volume extracted by other cooling water intakes in
The LNG terminal
volume of extracted water is relatively low when compared to the average hourly
volume of 323,280 m3 hr-1 (wet season) currently
extracted as part of the operation of the existing Hong Kong Electric Power
Total Residual Chlorine and Temperature
The cooling water system has been described in the EIA and consists of an intake supply which will draw seawater into the Open Rack Vaporiser system (ORV). Within the ORV the seawater will warm up the LNG and in so doing become cooled. When the seawater is discharged from the ORVs it then gravity flows through an open culvert to the discharge point underneath the LNG jetty. As seawater flows through the culvert its temperature can be expected to increase, although no account for this has been taken in the assessment.
Chlorine is added to the water as it
enters the seawater intake system in order to keep the ORV free of biofouling
organisms. Once added to the
seawater system, chlorine is diluted and a residual concentration of chlorine
remains within the discharged water.
This is termed Total Residual Chlorine, or TRC. In countries such as
For the LNG terminal, CAPCO has agreed to discharge a maximum TRC concentration of 0.3ppm. Although a conservative approach has been adopted (i.e. a continuous discharge at the maximum concentration), potential impacts to marine life through such a discharge have been modelled to assess environmental acceptability.
The results of this modelling and the impact assessment of effluent containing TRC and reduced temperature have been addressed in both the Marine Ecology (Section 9) and Fisheries (Section 10) Impact Assessments in Part 2 of the EIA Report. The Water Quality Impact Assessment, in which the results of the modelling used to predict the pattern of dilution and dispersion of temperature and TRC in marine waters at South Soko is discussed in Part 2 Section 6 of the EIA Report.
The results of the modelling exercise were compared and evaluated against applicable standards (i.e. the Water Quality Objectives (WQOs) as well as relevant internationally applicable criterion for marine ecological and fisheries assessments). The criteria adopted have been taken from Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) previously approved under the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (EIAO) in the Hong Kong SAR and international guidelines.
No exceedance of any of these criteria have been predicted to occur at identified sensitive receivers as a result of either the construction or operation of the LNG terminal and associated facilities at either the South Soko or Black Point sites.
In terms of the potential impacts through
discharge of cooled water, it is also considered important to note that the
ambient temperature of the waters surrounding
Furthermore, the maximum temperature
difference at the closest sensitive receiver (False Pillow Coral on
The relevant sections of the EIA that explain the impact to fish eggs and juvenile fish as a result of the intake and outfall system have been extracted and are presented in Attachments 1A & 1B.
Issues concerning impacts from underwater sound are presented above in Item (iv). Given that unacceptable impacts to marine ecological and fisheries resources (ie the prey items of marine mammals) are not predicted to occur (as discussed above in Item (v), unacceptable impacts to marine mammals from the cooling water discharge are not predicted.
Cooling Water System Design
Extracted from Part 2 -
"In order to provide water for regasification of LNG, seawater will be extracted from Tung Wan via submarine intake. The intake will extend approximately 300 m from the pumphouse to the offshore intake heads (Figures 3.9 and 3.10). It is proposed that a typical box culvert design be employed and the intake structure comprises of a precast concrete tower ballasted with mass concrete. The tower would be connected to the seawater pumphouse by submarine pipelines. The foundation will likely comprise a rockfill base placed directly over the rockhead level following dredging by grab dredgers to remove a thin layer of marine deposits beneath. The intake from the tower would be placed at an approximate depth of approximately –3 mPD. A cross-sectional drawing of the conceptual intake is presented in Figure 3.10."
Cooled Water Impacts - Temperature
Impacts to Water Quality
(Part 2 –
Cooled Water Discharge
Cooled water with a temperature of approximately 12.5°C below ambient will be discharged at the seawater outfall, which is located close to the seabed in the vicinity of the LNG carrier jetty. There are no water quality sensitive receivers in the immediate vicinity of the proposed discharge point.
The maximum flow rate of the discharge is expected to be equivalent to 18,000 m3 hr-1. Compliance with the WQO (D ± 2 °C from ambient) must be achieved at sensitive receivers. The discharge of cooled water has been simulated using computational modelling.
The results from the cooled water discharge modelling are included in Annex 6G and have been presented as contour plots showing impacts of cooled water discharges in the vicinity of the outfall. Figures SK_G01-G02 show the differences of the maximum temperature reduction between the maximum operational discharges and the baseline, representing the most conservative case.
It can be seen from the contour plots that the extent of temperature change from ambient for both the wet and dry seasons is predicted to be confined to the bottom layer, with no impact to the surface layer of the water column and no impact at sensitive receivers. This may be expected as the discharge of cooled water is close to the bottom and the relatively higher density of the cooled water results in weak vertical mixing.
Due to the distance to sensitive receivers, no non-compliance with the WQO has been predicted in either the dry or wet seasons. For the most conservative case (maximum operational discharge, see Figures SK_G01 and SK_G02), the temperature change is predicted to be less than 2 °C in both the dry and wet seasons. The temperature change of 2 °C will be confined to < 200 m from the outfall in the dry season and the wet season. The model results indicate that the dispersion of cooled water is rapid and not expected to cause an unacceptable impact.
Impacts to Marine Ecology
(Part 2 –
Cooled Water - Temperature
Cooled water with a decreased temperature of approximately -12.5°C from ambient will be discharged at the seawater outfall, which is located at the sea bed on the south coast of South Soko Island. The flow rate of the discharge is equivalent to 18,000 m3 hr-1 (peak flow). The discharge will be compliant with the WQO (Part 2 Section 6). The potential impacts of this discharge are principally related to the ecological effects in a zone of reduced temperature near the point of discharge. Impacts will be limited to a relatively small area in the bottom layer of the water column (Part 2 Section 6). The results from the cooled water discharge modelling obtained for both the wet and dry seasons have shown that the temperature change is predicted to be confined to the bottom layer with little or no impact to the surface layer.
As such impacts within the intertidal zone will not be expected as there is little or no impact to the surface layer of the water column (intertidal zone). In deeper water or the subtidal zone, impacts to the benthos are expected to be minor as the extent of the affected area is small.
Impacts to Fisheries Resources
(Part 2 –
Discharge of Cooled Water
Induced temperature changes to natural aquatic habitats have been proven to have detrimental effects on the physiology of fishes. The decline in temperature has the potential to alter the rate of development of fish embryos, larvae and gonad maturation. A slower growth rate means that fish larvae remain longer in the delicate early development stages, potentially increasing mortality () . The altered development of gonad maturation could ultimately reduce the spawning success of fish species and the altered mechanism of muscle development () could potentially reduce the chance of survival of juvenile fish.
Cooled water with a temperature of approximately 12.5°C below ambient will be discharged from the LNG terminal’s seawater outfall located near the bed layer of the water column. The results of the water quality modelling in Part 2 Section 6 have predicted that a temperature change exceeding the WQO of +/-2°C will remain in the bed layer within approximately 200m of the outfall in the dry season and approximately 70m in the wet season.
The results presented in Part 2 Section 6 indicate that the impacts to seawater temperature caused by the open circuit process are predicted to be localised. Furthermore, from a review of the results of the Ichthyoplankton and Fish Post-Larvae Survey presented in Annex 10 it emerges that the sensitivity of the fisheries resources in the proximity of the proposed LNG terminal is medium-low due to the comparatively low density of fish larvae and post larvae recorded, thus further reducing any potential adverse effects of the localised temperature change.
It is therefore expected that the cooler water discharge will not cause unacceptable impacts to the fisheries resources.
Cooled Water - Antifoulant
Impacts to Water Quality
(Part 2 –
Residual Chlorine Dispersion
Residual chlorine in the marine environment can be
harmful to marine organisms only if concentrations exceed tolerance
levels. It has been found that
harmful effects begin to occur at concentrations above 0.02 mg L-1 in
water (). The discharge limit for residual
chlorine is 1.0 mg L-1 according to EPD’s Technical Memorandum for Effluents issued under Section 21 Water Pollution
Control Ordinance, Cap 358. There is no value specified in the WQOs
The water quality impacts due to chlorine discharges have been assessed using computational modelling (see Water Quality Method Statement in Annex 6A). The results from the chlorine simulations are presented as contour plots of mean and depth averaged chlorine concentrations for the spring and neap tidal periods in the wet and dry seasons. The contour plots are provided in Annex 6H. Figures SK_H01-08 present the maximum operational discharges, while Figures SK-H09-16 show the fluctuating operational discharges. Both discharge rates appear to result in a similar pattern of residual chlorine dispersion.
The dispersion results obtained for both the wet and dry seasons have shown that the majority of the residual chlorine is contained within the bottom layer, with little or no chlorine in the middle and the surface layers. This indicates that the release of the chlorine near to the seabed and the relatively higher density of the cooled water, in which the chlorine is discharged, results in weak vertical mixing.
model used the assumption that the terminal would discharge total residual
chlorine at a maximum concentration of 0.3 mg L-1. This concentration is similar to that
for most power stations in
Based on the predictions, the maximum extent of the > 0.01 mg L-1 contour is <300 m from the discharge point during the dry season and <100 m during the wet season (Figure SK_H01 and Figure SK_H05). These areas were defined as the “mixing zones”.
Due to the small extent of the plumes, and the fact that no sensitive receivers would be affected, no unacceptable water quality impacts from residual chlorine discharge are expected to occur. The short duration peaks of residual chlorine discharge will also not contribute to any unacceptable adverse impacts. The assessment confirms the environmental suitability of the proposed discharge.
Impacts to Marine Ecology
(Part 2 –
Cooled Water - Antifoulants
There are considerable operational and ecological issues caused by organisms within, and passing through industrial water systems and, these problems can be costly (). Mussels, oysters and other marine organisms growing within cooled water circuits have resulted in losses in thermal efficiency and even total shutdowns. To counteract settling and actively growing fouling organisms, cooled water circuits are usually dosed with antifoulants (typically chlorine in the form of sodium hypochlorite). The discharge of the resulting (chlorinated) effluents may in turn have effects on the habitat beyond the outfall.
The effluent from the cooled water system will contain traces of antifoulant at a concentration of approximately 0.3 mg L-1, which is below the EPD’s () statutory limit of 1.0 mg L-1.
Values for observed toxic effects of chlorine are available from the literature and can be used for reference purposes (Table 9.6). For the majority of organisms the toxicity of residual free chlorine depends on the concentration and exposure time. Short exposure to high concentrations often leads to lethal effects as do long term exposures to low concentrations ().
Cl (mg L-1)
Photosynthesis of marine phytoplankton depressed by 70-80%
Short term exposure has led to rapid but temporary responses demonstrated through depression in metabolic rate and reproductive activity.
Oyster Larvae (Ostrea edulis)
Tolerant of short term exposure with no demonstrated toxic response.
Barnacle Larvae (Elminius modestus)
Tolerant of short term exposure with no demonstrated toxic response.
Lobster Larvae (Homarus americanus)
Respiration rate increased after 60 minute exposure to 0.1 mg L-1 and after 30 minute exposure to 0.1 mg L-1.
Concentrations of residual chlorine
typically diminish rapidly with time and distance from the discharge
The modelling exercises conducted for the water quality assessment
(reported in Part 2 Section 6)
indicate that residual chlorine concentrations exceeding 0.01 mg L-1
are only likely to occur within 300m of the outfall and are mainly confined to
the bed layer of the water column.
These predicted increases do not exceed tolerance thresholds established
in the literature (0.02 mg L-1) and are in accordance with those
levels recommended in previous studies in
Impact to Fisheries Resources
(Part 2 –
There are potential operational issues caused by the growth or encrustation of marine organisms on the open loop vaporization system (i.e., pipes, valves etc.). Operationally, the colonization of marine organisms such as algae, bryozoans, molluscs and cirripedes within cooled water circuits could result in losses in thermal efficiency and reduced reliability of the system (including total shutdown). To counteract settling and growth of marine organisms, cooled water circuits are typically dosed with chemicals (usually sodium hypochlorite). Such chemicals are known as antifoulants and they inhibit the growth of organisms within the circuit by creating unsuitable living conditions. A secondary consequence of this form of treatment is associated with the discharge of the treated seawater into the marine environment.
Research has been conducted internationally on the effects of chlorine discharges on marine ecological and fisheries resources. The international review provides data which can be used as a benchmark to evaluate potential impacts. Work on the toxic effects of chlorine on fish eggs and larvae has indicated that abnormal development may occur at concentrations of 0.31 to 0.38 mg L-1 (). However, behavioural studies have indicated that adult fish will avoid areas where concentrations of free residual chlorine in the water exceed 0.035 mg L-1 ().
The proposed LNG terminal is predicted to discharge residual free chlorine at a concentration of < 0.30 mg L-1. This concentration is below EPD’s discharge limit of 1.0 mg L-1 ().
Concentrations of residual chlorine have been shown to diminish rapidly with time and distance from the discharge point (). A concentration of residual chlorine of 0.01 mg L-1 (daily maximum) at the edge of the mixing zone is the criterion used in the Water Quality Assessment (Part 2 Section 6). The modelling exercise conducted in the assessment indicates that maximum residual chlorine concentrations exceeding 0.01 mg L-1 are only likely to occur within 300 m of the outfall and are mainly confined to lower layers of the water column. These predicted increases do not exceed tolerance thresholds established in the literature (0.02 mg L-1) and are consistent with levels recommended in previous studies in Hong Kong (0.01 mg L-1).
Impacts to Fisheries Resources (cont’d)
(Part 2 –
Assessment of Environmental Impacts
Nature of Impact:
Discharge of cooled water is not predicted to pose adverse impacts to fisheries resources and discharges of residual free chlorine will be in compliance with the EPD’s allowable discharge limit.”
Supplementary Information on Seawater Intake Impacts to Fisheries Spawning Grounds and Nursery Areas
B1. SEAWATER INTAKE IMPACTS TO FISHERIES SPAWNING GROUNDS AND NURSERY AREA
Impact to Fisheries Resources
(Part 2 –
Impingement and Entrainment
The discharge and intake points for the seawater to be used in the proposed open circuit system will be separated to reduce the re-circulation of the cooled water and therefore maximise the efficiency of the heat exchange process.
In order to draw in the warmest water to the vaporisers for optimum efficiency in the regasification process, the seawater intake will be designed to be as high as possible within the water column. The intake structure is made up of a concrete tower ballasted with mass concrete connected to the onshore seawater pump house by a submarine pipeline. The intake will be appropriately screened to reduce the uptake of marine organisms and suspended material. From a fisheries perspective the high volume and velocity of inflowing seawater may have negative effects on fish, fish eggs and crustaceans due to the physical damage caused by collisions with the screen (impingement) and due to their uptake and exposure to the vaporization process (entrainment).
The swimming speeds of juvenile and larval fishes vary greatly but are generally slower than the water velocity of the intake pipe. Owing to their larger size juvenile fish are generally more susceptible to impingement, whilst fish and crustacean larvae and eggs, zooplankton and phytoplankton are more exposed to entrainment, as their small size enables them to pass through the screen ()().
Whilst it is acknowledged that the uptake of seawater for the open circuit vaporization process may minimally increase the natural mortality rate of fish larvae, crustaceans and fish eggs due to impingement and entrainment, it has to be noted that the significance of such impacts is strongly dependent on the ecological sensitivity and the productivity of the impacted area.
From a review of the results of the Ichthyoplankton and Fish Post-Larvae Survey (Annex 10) it is evident that the
sensitivity and productivity of the impacted area is medium-low due to the
comparatively low mean fish density characteristic of the
is no significant difference in the spatial or diurnal/nocturnal distribution
of fish density and fish egg density at the
is no significant difference in fish density and eggs density between the
identified sensitive spawning/nursing grounds of southern
Based on these results, it is estimated that the sensitivity of the spawning area in correspondence of the five sampling locations (including the sampling station at the future intake position – SK1) is medium-low and it is predicted that no unacceptable adverse impacts to the fisheries resources caused by impingement and entrainment will occur.
iii). Elaboration of the Commitment, Design, Management, and Programme of the Proposed Enhancement Plan
purpose of this document is to provide further details of CAPCO’s intended
Enhancement Plan at
waters around the
have been raised by academics and NGOs in Hong Kong about the practicalities of
enforcement of Marine Parks Regulations in remote and isolated areas of
LNG terminal will require a 24 hour manned state of the art security system on
sees no reason why the siting and operation of the LNG terminal on
Although the area has been proposed for
designation as a
security and surveillance measures in place at the terminal can be used to
alert the AFCD and Marine Department concerning vessels that are violating the
regulations of the
abandoned state of the
Scientific information on the marine
environment has been gathered for the purposes of the EIA. CAPCO has, however, identified a variety
of studies that would be conducted should the LNG terminal be located on
EIA Report, Part 4 – Section 6,
presents information on key opportunities that can arise through siting the LNG
· Marine Conservation
· Rehabilitation of Marine Environments
· Cultural Heritage
· Public Access
· Education & Recreation
CAPCO is committed to working with the
Country Marine Parks Authority, relevant Government departments and other stakeholders
to formulate and then agree, after the EIA process has been completed, the most
appropriate path forward for of implementation of an Enhancement Plan for
It is intended that the Enhancement Plan would be a living document that would be updated and developed during the various phases of the LNG terminal project including pre-construction, construction and operation.
It is useful to note that a comprehensive Environmental Monitoring and Audit (EM&A) programme for the LNG terminal and associated facilities has been proposed in the EM&A Manual. This covers actions required to monitor and check on impacts, largely from the construction works, to specific receptors such as water quality sensitive receivers. The Enhancement Plan does not form part of the EM&A programme. Whilst, the EM&A process will monitor potential impacts through construction and operation activities and verify the commitments made in the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Report, the Enhancement Plan will provide measures to compliment the EM&A process and provide direct benefit to various sectors of the community.
It is CAPCO’s intention to successfully launch the Enhancement Plan in consultation with all stakeholders. Consequently, in order to formalise the process and provide a platform for dialogue CAPCO will establish a Scientific and Educational Advisory Committee (SEAC). It is envisaged that the SEAC will be composed of a diverse membership including CAPCO, Government, NGOs, Fishermen’s representatives, Academics and representatives of relevant community bodies.
The remit of the committee will largely be to advise on the implementation of the ocean and Island based components of the Enhancement Plan. The terms of reference for the SEAC will be prepared to avoid any potential overlap with those of the Country and Marine Parks Authority. The membership of the SEAC will be developed prior to commencement of construction works.
CAPCO understands that the waters around the Soko Islands and Southwest Lantau have been previously identified as having the potential to be zoned for the purposes of marine conservation in the form of Marine Parks. Whilst key findings of the EIA Report indicate that the waters around the Soko Islands have similar characteristics to the extensive southern waters of Hong Kong, CAPCO encourages marine conservation and environmental education in Hong Kong.
discussed in the EIA Report CAPCO strongly believes the siting and operation of
the LNG terminal on
The proposed co-siting provides for
mutually beneficial outcomes. In
order for a
The physical presence of the LNG terminal on South Soko Island including its associated security operations can be seen as a benefit to support the Government’s protection of the Marine Park in an otherwise unoccupied area.
Information gathered from the
CAPCO is prepared, as a stakeholder, to assist government by funding elements of the Marine Parks programme and establishing a Marine Ecology & Natural Heritage Resource area at a location to be agreed to present the findings of surveys and monitoring works conducted during construction and operation of the LNG terminal. CAPCO envisages supporting the Country and the Marine Parks Authority to consider and decide on the optimal size of, and the objective for, the marine conservation area.
Within the funding described in Section 7, CAPCO will fund a number of studies to further develop the scientific and publics understanding of the marine environments in these waters. A summary of these studies is presented below. It should be noted that the following list is not considered to be definitive, but presents a potential program for developing a long term understanding of marine waters in Hong Kong ():
transect surveys of dolphins and finless porpoise throughout southwestern
waters to add to the long term body of knowledge on cetaceans in
for the potential for acoustic studies surveys as part of population and
behavioural investigations of dolphins and finless porpoise throughout western
dive surveys of coral reef habitats (particularly of the False Pillow Coral)
and associated reef fish along the coastlines of the
fry and larvae surveys throughout the southern waters of
monitoring and analysis with particular reference to the catch per unit effort
within the proposed
biology of the Amphioxus, (about which, while found throughout Hong Kong
waters, little is known but is noted as a protected species in
· Surveys of the benthic fauna within and outside of the proposed marine parks pre-designation and then during operation of the LNG terminal and marine park.
term water quality monitoring at suitable locations in the
of different coastal shore habitats including sandy, boulder and high energy
shores within the proposed
Surveys will follow accepted protocols and specific defined time periods for pre, during and post construction phases of the project. The aforementioned behavioural and biological studies would form part of CAPCO’s scientific support for the marine parks programme. It is envisaged that, where possible, CAPCO will engage local academics and universities to either lead, assist or support these studies. CAPCO has a long history of funding conservation projects and studies within local academia and considers this a clear opportunity to continue this tradition as part of the Enhancement Plan. The findings of these studies would be presented to the SEAC, who would have the ability and means to action key recommendations into possible future management and monitoring programmes.
The works highlighted above would be conducted according to the phases of the Project, ie elements would be conducted during the pre-construction work (eg population biology studies of Amphioxus) and others would continue during the construction and operation phases for a limited time. It is expected that some of the studies (e.g. pre-,during and post-construction marine mammal surveys) would provide useful data that will contribute to the management of the marine conservation areas.
conducting the preliminary investigations of
had examined the site in the past as a potential location for deployment of
Artificial Reefs. Whilst it is noted
that the site experiences high sediment loads at certain times of the year, it
is also noted that Artificial Reefs could provide a mechanism to rehabilitate
this former sand dredging area.
Other options would be examined for rehabilitation, including expansion
of the boundaries of the
geophysical surveys undertaken as part of the EIA revealed that the seabed in
the vicinity of the
This component of the Enhancement Plan will examine measures that could be implemented to rehabilitate the marine environment in the area. Measures that will be explored and discussed by specialists in consultation with the SEAC are expected to include:
· Deployment of a suitable quantity of ARs to enhance fisheries resources
· Exploration of other ecological and fisheries enhancement measures
· Assistance to Government in the implementation and enforcement of fisheries protection areas.
· Assistance to Government in the implementation and enforcement of vessel speed restrictions and no anchoring areas.
Complement the Country and Marine Parks
Authority in their management of the
It is expected that the above components of the Enhancement Plan would be part of research initiatives. As discussed above specialists in relevant fields would perform the above investigations in consultation with the SEAC. For example, controls on fishing activities will need to be discussed with fisheries representatives on the SEAC.
The EIA report indicated that the
rescue excavation activities will not form part of the Enhancement Plan as they
will conducted as a mitigation measure and will be actioned according to
approvals issued by the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO). CAPCO is committed to provide assistance
to AMO for placing these artefacts on public display at a suitable
location. Further investigations
will be conducted to determine whether elements of the findings from the rescue
excavation can be displayed on
The rescue excavation works will be conducted by licensed archaeologists commissioned by CAPCO under the supervision and audit of AMO prior to construction works on the site. The artefacts will be stored by AMO and CAPCO will work with AMO on arranging and funding the display.
present access to
order to maintain and improve access for grave visitation, and for fishermen
and recreational users of
· a new public pier close to Pak Tso Wan
· fund programs to maintain the public areas and amenities in a clean and tidy condition
source of potable water to
The replacement pier will be constructed during the period when the LNG terminal is under construction and will be completed by the time the terminal is operational. CAPCO will fund the design and construction of the pier.
As discussed in Sections 2 and 4 above the South Soko Island has conservation and heritage features that can be enhanced to facilitate recreational use and to maximise educational opportunities. This component of the plan would focus on education and recreational aspects.
CAPCO is willing to support education efforts focusing on the following aspects:
1. establishing a Marine Ecology & Natural Heritage Resource area at a location to be agreed to present and display the findings of surveys and monitoring works conducted during construction and operation of the LNG terminal. This display could be operated by CAPCO or an NGO;
cultural heritage features of South Soko
(including past and recent history of the
marine and terrestrial ecology conservation
at and around the
4. marine conservation areas of Fan Lau;
5. displays on the mitigation works and avoidance measures adopted by CAPCO to manage construction and operation phase issues of the LNG terminal project;
provision of access enabling pre-arranged
guided tours of the
to provide input and sponsor
the development of education programmes for schools and students of different
age groups that visit the
benefits of clean energy for
the condition of footpaths, slopes and retaining walls on
· improved public access through upgrading and maintaining walking trails;
· rest areas and view points at suitable locations;
· bird and butterfily watching areas at suitable locations near the abandoned freshwater reservoir.
Construction of the afore mentioned features can be accommodated during the LNG terminal construction period. CAPCO will fund the design and construction of these facilities in consultation with the SEAC.
At this early stage in the development of the Enhancement Plan and its initiatives, it is premature to discuss exact funding arrangements. However, to develop an understanding of the scope and scale of CAPCO's proposal, some quantification may be helpful.
CAPCO’s estimates for the cost of the Enhancement Plan as herein described is approximately HK$100 million with over half of that sum allocated to marine enhancement programmes.
CAPCO has undertaken studies over the last
four years to investigate the potential establishment of a LNG receiving
· The various studies have included three years of comprehensive stakeholder engagement.
CAPCO has identified examples of successful
industrial facilities worldwide, including those located in conservation areas
e.g. Dominion Cove Point LNG Terminal in the
· Based on local and international experience CAPCO has identified and adopted stringent measures to address concerns related to the coexistence of a LNG terminal with a marine park during both the construction and operation phases.
· Working with the HKSARG CAPCO is fully committed enhancing the environment of South Soko and surrounding waters including regular consultation with a Scientific Education and Advisory Committee.
CAPCO’s commitment to the enhancement of
concepts presented in the Enhancement Plan would only be fully realised through
the siting of the LNG terminal at
 Members are referred to the below web sites for the Dominion Cove Point LNG Terminal & the Cove Point Natural Heritage Trust to learn more about this facility and the innovative approach development for responsibly managing environmental issues.