Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (Cap.499)
Section 5 (7)
Environmental Impact Assessment Study Brief No. ESB-002/1998

Project Title : 132 kV Overhead Line from Tsuen Wan to Sham Tseng Name of Applicant : China Light and Power Co. Ltd. (CLP)

1.1An application (No. ESB-002/1998) for an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) study brief under section 5(1) of the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (EIAO) was submitted by the Applicant on 23 April 1998 with a project profile (No. PP-002/1998).
1.2The Applicant proposes to establish two 132kV overhead transmission pole lines running in parallel across the Tai Lam Country Park to deliver electricity from the existing substations in Tsuen Wan to a new 132kV substation in Sham Tseng. The proposed 132kV power lines will replace the existing 11kV and 33kV overhead lines to maintain a secure electricity supply to the existing and future developments in Sham Tseng and Tsing Lung Tau. The total length of each route will be about 6km and each end of route is to be linked by underground cables to the substations. The locations of the routes are shown on the attached map.
1.3The proposed project is a Designated Project under the EIAO by virtue of Section Q.1(b) of Schedule 2 of the Ordinance. The project profile covers one designated project which is the construction and operation of two 132kV overhead power lines part of which lies within the Tai Lam Country Park.
1.4Pursuant to section 5(7)(a) of the EIAO, the Director of Environmental Protection (the Director) issues this EIA study brief to the Applicant to carry out an EIA study.
1.5The purpose of this EIA study is to provide information on the nature and extent of environmental impacts arising from the construction and operation of the proposed designated project and related activities taking place concurrently. This information will contribute to decisions by the Director on :
(i)the overall acceptability of any adverse environmental consequences that are likely to arise as a result of the proposed project;
(ii)the conditions and requirements for the detailed design, construction and operation of the proposed project to mitigate against adverse environmental consequences wherever practicable; and
(iii)the acceptability of residual impacts after the proposed mitigation measures are implemented.
2.1The objectives of the EIA study are as follows:
(i)to describe the proposed project and associated works together with the requirements for carrying out the proposed project;
(ii)to identify and describe the elements of the community and environment likely to be affected by the proposed project and/or likely to cause adverse impacts to the proposed project, including both the natural and man-made environment;
(iii)to identify and quantify emission sources and determine the significance of impacts on sensitive receivers and potential affected uses;
(iv)to identify and quantify any potential losses or damage to flora, fauna and natural habitats;
(v)to identify any potential landscape and visual impacts and to propose measures to mitigate these impacts;
(vi)to propose the provision of infrastructure or mitigation measures so as to minimize pollution, environmental disturbance and nuisance during construction and operation of the project;
(vii)to identify, predict and evaluate the residual (i.e. after practicable mitigation) environmental impacts and the cumulative effects expected to arise during the construction and operation phases of the project in relation to the sensitive receivers and potential affected uses;
(viii)to identify, assess and specify methods, measures and standards, to be included in the detailed design, construction and operation of the project which are necessary to mitigate these environmental impacts and reducing them to acceptable levels;
(ix)to investigate the extent of side-effects of proposed mitigation measures that may lead to other forms of impacts;
(x)to identify constraints associated with the mitigation measures recommended in the study; and
(xi)to design and specify the environmental monitoring and audit requirements necessary to ensure the implementation and the effectiveness of the environmental protection and pollution control measures adopted.
3.1The purpose of this study brief is to scope the key issues of the EIA study. The applicant has to demonstrate in the EIA report that the criteria in the relevant sections of the Technical Memorandum on the Environmental Impact Assessment Process of the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (hereafter referred to as the TM), are fully complied with.
The Scope
3.2The scope of this EIA study shall include one designated project mentioned in section 1.3 above, namely, construction and operation of two 132kV overhead power lines within the Tai Lam Country Park.
3.3When preparing the EIA report in accordance with the technical requirements below, the applicant shall fully assess and propose mitigation of all adverse impacts to the affected part of the Tai Lam Country Park, irrespective of whether they are caused by the parts of the project within or without the country park limit.
Technical Requirements
3.4The Applicant shall conduct the EIA study to address all environmental aspects of the activities described in the scope as set out above. They are to include the following technical requirements as specific impacts:
3.5Ecological Impact (Terrestrial)
3.5.1The Applicant shall examine the flora, fauna and other components of the ecological habitats within the project areas and other areas likely to be affected by the project. It should be the aim to protect, maintain or rehabilitate the natural environment. In particular, the proposed project shall avoid impacts on recognised sites of conservation importance (e.g. Country Park) and other ecologically sensitive areas. The assessment shall identify and quantify as far as possible the potential ecological impacts associated with the project. The study shall evaluate the environmental acceptability of the project. The relevant guidelines and requirements laid down in Annexes 8 and 16 of the Technical Memorandum shall be followed.
3.5.2The assessment shall include the following tasks:
(i)review the findings of relevant studies and collate all the available information regarding the ecological character of the study area;
(ii)evaluate the information collected and identify any information gap relating to the assessment of potential ecological impacts to the terrestrial environment;
(iii)carry out necessary field surveys (the duration of which shall be at least 4 months and shall cover the wet season) and investigations to verify the information collected, fill the information gaps identified and fulfil the objectives of the EIA study;
(iv)establish the general ecological profile of the study area and describe the characteristics of each habitat found. Major information to be provided shall include:
(a)description of the physical environment;
(b)habitat maps of suitable scale (1:1000 to 1:5000) showing the types and locations of habitats in the study area;
(c)ecological characteristics of each habitat type such as size, vegetation type, species present, dominant species found, species diversity and abundance, community structure, inter-dependence of the habitats and species, and presence of any features of ecological importance;
(d)representative colour photos of each habitat type and any important ecological features identified;
(e)species found that are rare, endangered and/or listed under local legislation, international conventions for conservation of wildlife/habitats or red data books;
(v)investigate and describe the existing wildlife uses of the various habitats with special attention to those wildlife groups and habitats with conservation interests including:
(b)natural stream courses; and
(c)any other habitats and wildlife groups identified as having special conservation interests by the study.
(vi)describe all recognized sites of conservation importance in the proposed development site and its vicinity and assess whether these sites will be affected by the proposed development or not;
(vii)using suitable methodology, identify and quantify as far as possible any direct, indirect, on-site, off-site, primary, secondary and cumulative ecological impacts such as destruction of habitats, reduction of species abundance/diversity, loss of feeding grounds, reduction of ecological carrying capacity and habitat fragmentation;
(viii)evaluate the significance and acceptability of the ecological impacts identified using well-defined criteria;
(ix)recommend all possible alternatives (such as modifications of layout and design) and practicable mitigation measures to avoid, minimize and/or compensate for the adverse ecological impacts identified,
(x)evaluate the feasibility and effectiveness of the recommended mitigation measures and define the scope, type, location, implementation arrangement, subsequent management and maintenance of such measures;
(xi)determine and quantify as far as possible the residual ecological impacts after implementation of the proposed mitigation measures;
(xii)evaluate the severity and acceptability of the residual ecological impacts using well-defined criteria. If off-site mitigation measures are considered necessary to mitigate the residual impacts, the guidelines and requirements laid down in the Planning, Environment and Lands Bureau Technical Circular No. 1/97 shall be followed; and
(xiii)review the need for and recommend any ecological monitoring programme required.
3.6Hazard to Life
3.6.1To investigate the potential health hazard to humans due to exposure to electro-magnetic (EM) fields generated by the overhead line, the Applicant shall carry out an EM fields assessment in compliance with the EM field standards stipulated in Chapter 7 of the Hong Kong Planning Standards and Guidelines and the guidelines issued by the International Commission on Non-ionizing Radiation Protection in 1998.
3.7Landscape and Visual Impact
3.7.1Landscape and visual impact assessment shall cover the followings :
(i)a baseline study to provide for a comprehensive and accurate description of the baseline landscape and visual character;
(ii)a review of the relevant planning and development control framework;
(iii)impact studies to identify the potential landscape and visual impacts and to predict their magnitude and potential significance; and
(iv)recommendations on the required mitigation measures and implementation programme.
Task 1 :Assessment of Landscape Impacts
3.7.2The Applicant shall appraise and analyse the existing landscape resource and character of the Study Area. The Assessment shall focus particularly on the sensitivity of the landscape framework and its ability to accommodate change. The Applicant shall describe the appearance of the project to include its height, colour, finishes, features, and so forth and shall identify the degree of compatibility of the proposed project with the existing landscape.
Task 2 :Assessment of Visual Impacts
3.7.3The Applicant shall assess the visual impacts of the proposed project. The assessment shall include the following :
(i)identification and plotting of visibility contours of the proposed project within the Study Area;
(ii)identification of the key groups of sensitive receivers within the visibility contours with regard to views from both ground level and elevated vantage points; and
(iii)the severity of visual impacts in terms of distance and number of sensitive receivers shall be identified. The visual impacts of the project with and without mitigation measures shall be assessed.
Task 3 :Proposals for Mitigation Measures
3.7.4The Applicant shall review relevant plans and studies so as to have an insight to the future outlook of the area affected and the means by which the project can fit into the environment. Any conflict with Statutory Town Plans shall be highlighted and appropriate follow-up action shall be recommended.
Task 4 :Presentation Materials
3.7.5The Applicant shall recommend mitigation measures to minimize the adverse effects identified in Tasks 1 and 2 above, including provision of a landscape design. The mitigation measures shall include the retention of vegetation, transplanting of mature trees, provision of screen planting, revegetation of disturbed land, reprovisioning of amenity areas, design of structures, provision of finishes to structures, and any measures to mitigate the disturbance to the existing landuse.
Task 5 :Presentation Materials
3.7.6Perspective drawings, plans and section/elevation diagrams, photographs on scaled physical models, photo-retouching and photo-montage shall be adopted to illustrate the landscape and visual impacts of the project.
3.7.7The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing landscape and visual impact as stated in Annexes 10 and 18 of the Technical memorandum, respectively.
4.1The Applicant shall identify in the EIA study whether there is any need for EM&A activities during the construction and operation phases of the project and, if affirmative, to define the scope of the EM&A requirements for the project in the EIA study.
4.2Subject to the confirmation of the EIA study findings, the Applicant shall comply with the requirements as stipulated in Annex 21 of the TM.
4.3The Applicant shall prepare a project implementation schedule (in the form of a check list) containing all the EIA study recommendations and mitigation measures with reference to the implementation programme.
5.1The EIA study brief is valid for a period of 24 months after the date of issue. If the EIA study does not commence within this period, the Applicant shall apply to the Director for another EIA study brief afresh in accordance with section 6 of the EIAO before commencement of the EIA study.
6.1In preparing the EIA report, the Applicant shall refer to Annex 11 of the TM for the contents of an EIA report. The Applicant shall also refer to Annex 20 of the TM which stipulates the guidelines for the review of an EIA report.
6.2The Applicant shall supply the Director with the following number of copies of the EIA report and the executive summary:
(i)25 copies of the EIA report in English and 50 copies of the executive summary (each bilingual in both English and Chinese) as required under section 6(2) of the EIAO to be supplied at the time of application for approval of the EIA report.
(ii)when necessary, any addendum to the EIA report and the executive summary submitted in (i) above as required under section 7(1) of the EIAO, to be supplied upon advice by the Director for public inspection.
(iii)20 copies of the EIA report in English and 50 copies of the executive summary (each bilingual in both English and Chinese) with or without addendum as required under section 7(5) of the EIAO, to be supplied upon advice by the Director for consultation with the Advisory Council on the Environment.