Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (Cap. 499),

Section 5(7)

 

Environmental Impact Assessment Study Brief No. ESB-126/2005

 

 Project Title : Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Receiving Terminal

and Associated Facilities

(hereinafter known as the "Project")

 

Name of Applicant :    Castle Peak Power Company Limited

(hereinafter known as the "Applicant")

                                                                                                            

1.            BACKGROUND

 

1.1          An application (No. ESB-126/2005) 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 13 May 2005 with a Project Profile (No. PP-126/2005) (the Project Profile).

 

1.2                 The proposed Project is to develop a Liquefied Natural Gas Terminal (LNG) in the Hong Kong SAR.  This will involve the construction and operation of a LNG receiving terminal and its associated facilities at either the South Soko Island or Black Point. The receiving terminal will provide a facility for the storage of LNG and the supply of regasified natural gas primarily to the Black Point Power Station (BPPS).  For the South Soko option, the natural gas will be sent via a submarine natural gas pipeline to a Gas Receiving Station (GRS) at BPPS.  For the Black Point option, the connection to BPPS will be via a short onshore pipeline within boundaries of the terminal and the power station.  The preliminary conceptual layout of South Soko LNG Terminal and Black Point LNG Terminal are given on Figure No. 2.4a and 2.4e of the Project Profile and is indicated in Appendix A1 and A2.  A map showing the alignment of the submarine natural gas pipeline is shown in Appendix A3

 

1.3                 The scope of the Project includes the followings:

               Approximately 30 ha of land are required to install the necessary infrastructure of the receiving terminal, which would include at least the following facilities:

 

Ÿ               Jetty and unloading arms

Ÿ               Process Area

Ÿ               Up to 3 LNG Tanks

Ÿ               Low Pressure and High Pressure pumping systems

Ÿ               Vaporizers (Regasification Area)

Ÿ               Vent or flare systems (low pressure and high pressure)

Ÿ               Maintenance Workshop

Ÿ               Administration Building

Ÿ               Guard House

Ÿ               Utility Area

Ÿ               Control Room

Ÿ               Gas Metering Station

Ÿ               Emergency gas turbine power generator (for the South Soko Island Option only)

Ÿ               Offshore Pipeline launching area (for South Soko option)

Ÿ               Gas pipeline (for South Soko option)

Ÿ               Gas Receiving Station at Blackpoint (for South Soko option)

Ÿ               Submarine Power Cable (for South Soko option)

Ÿ               Potential Submarine Water Main (for South Soko option)

Gas will be piped to the Black Point Power Station (BPPS) via a short onshore pipeline for the Black Point Option or via an approximately 40 km long submarine gas pipeline for the South Soko Option.

Presently, a typical LNG carrier measures approximately 285 m long, 43 m wide and 12 m draft, and is able to transport around 145,000 m3 of LNG.  LNG carriers of larger sizes, up to 215,000 m3, may be considered by the Applicant.

 

Maintenance dredging may be required during the operational phase since the berthing area, the approach channel and the turning circle will be subject to natural siltation.

 

1.4          The following elements of the Project addressed in this Project Profile are classified as Designated Projects under the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (Cap. 499) (EIAO).

For both the South Soko Island and Black Point options:

Ÿ                      A storage, transfer and trans-shipment of liquefied natural gas with a storage capacity of not less than 200 tonnes (item L.2 of Part I of Schedule 2 of EIAO);

Ÿ                      Dredging operation for the approach channel and turning circle that exceeds 500,000 m3 (item C.12 of Part I of Schedule 2 of EIAO).

For the South Soko Island option only:

Ÿ                     Installation of a submarine gas pipeline connecting the proposed LNG terminal at the South Soko Island and the Black Point Power Station (item H.2 of Part I of Schedule 2 of EIAO);

Ÿ    Dredging operation for the installation of a submarine power cable connecting Shek Pik with the proposed LNG terminal at South Soko which is less than 500m from the nearest boundary of an existing Site of Cultural Heritage (item C.12(a) of Part I of Schedule 2 of EIAO); and,

Ÿ Potential dredging operation for the installation of a submarine water main connecting Shek Pik with the proposed LNG terminal at South Soko which is less than 500m from the nearest boundary of an existing Site of Cultural Heritage (item C.12(a) of Part I of Schedule 2 of EIAO). 

For the Black Point option only:

Ÿ   Reclamation works (including associated dredging works) of more than 5 ha in size (item C.1 of Part I of Schedule 2 of EIAO).

 

1.5         Pursuant 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.

 

1.6         The 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 Project and related activities that take place concurrently. This information will contribute to decisions by the Director on:

(i)      the overall acceptability of any adverse environmental consequences that is to arise as a result of the Project and the associated activities of the Project;

(ii)    the conditions and requirements for the detailed design, construction and  operation of the Project to mitigate against adverse environmental consequences; and

(iii) the acceptability of residual impacts after the proposed mitigation measures are implemented.

 

 

2.            OBJECTIVES OF THE EIA STUDY

 

2.1          The objectives of the EIA study are as follows:

 

(i)               to describe the Project and associated works together with the requirements for carrying out the Project;

(ii)           to provide information on the intended uses of the LNG and justify the proposed capacity of the facilities;

(iii)            to identify the types of Designated Projects under Part I Schedule 2 of the EIAO to be covered in the Project;

(iv)           to identify and describe the elements of the community and environment to be affected by the Project, including any loss of natural coastline, rocky or sandy shore, the population close to the LNG carrier route, and/or to cause adverse impacts to the Project, including both the natural and man-made environment and the associated environmental constraints;

(v)             to consider alternatives including, but not limited to, location, size of reclamation, scale of development, design layout, with a view to avoiding and minimizing the potential environmental impacts on marine waters and the ecological sensitivity areas and other sensitive uses; to compare the environmental benefits and dis-benefits of each of the different options; to provide reasons for selecting the preferred option(s) and to describe the part of environmental factors played in the selection;

(vi)           to identify and quantify emission sources and determine the significance of impacts on sensitive receivers and potential affected uses;

(vii)          to identify and quantify any potential losses or damage to flora, fauna and natural habitats and to propose measures to mitigate these impacts;

(viii)        to identify any negative impacts on Chinese White Dolphin and Finless porpoise and to propose measures to mitigate these impacts;

(ix)           to identify any negative impacts on fisheries and to propose measures to mitigate these impacts;

(x)             to identify any potential landscape and visual impacts and to propose measures to mitigate these impacts;

(xi)           to identify the risk due to the transportation and storage of LNG and to propose measures to mitigate the impact;

(xii)        to identify the risk to environmental sensitive receivers, including the marine and terrestrial habitats, due to LNG leakage and the consequential fire hazard and to propose measures to minimize the potential risk;

(xiii)        to identify any negative impacts on sites of cultural heritage and to propose measures to mitigate these impacts;

(xiv)      to compare the environmental merits and demerits of the Soko and/or Black Point Option with other options;

(xv)         to propose the provision of mitigation measures to minimize pollution, environmental disturbance and nuisance during construction and operation of the Project;

(xvi)        to investigate the feasibility, practicability, effectiveness and implications of the proposed mitigation measures;

(xvii)      to identify, predict and evaluate the residual environmental impacts (i.e. after practicable mitigation) 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;

(xviii)  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 risks, environmental impacts and cumulative effects and reduce them to acceptable levels;

(xix)      to investigate the extent of the secondary environmental impacts that may arise from the proposed mitigation measures and to identify constraints associated with the mitigation measures recommended in the EIA study, as well as the provision of any necessary modification; and

(xx)       to design and specify the environmental monitoring and audit requirements to ensure the effective implementation of the recommended environmental protection and pollution control measures.

 

3.            DETAILED REQUIREMENTS OF THE EIA STUDY

 

3.1          The Purpose

 

               The purpose of this study brief is to scope the key issues of the EIA study and to specify the environmental issues that are required to be reviewed and assessed in the EIA report.  The Applicant shall refer to Section 3.2 – Section 3.4 for the South Soko Option, and Section 3.5 – Section 3.7 for the Blackpoint Option. 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 (hereinafter referred to as “the TM”) are met.

 

3.2          The Scope for the South Soko Option

 

The scope for the South Soko Option of this EIA study shall cover the Project scope for the South Soko Option as proposed in the Project Profile and shall include the relevant works and facilities mentioned in Section 1.3 above.  The Applicant shall review and consider the previous relevant planning studies, including the South West New Territories Development Strategy Review (SWNT DSR), and identified issues, public opinion and study findings as being of relevance to the project. The EIA study shall address the key issues described below, together with any other key issues identified during the course of the EIA study and the cumulative environmental impacts of the Project, through interaction or in combination with other existing, committed, planned and known potential developments, including the proposed Marine Park surrounding Soko Islands and the planned Spa and Resort Development at Tai A Chau in the vicinity of the Project:

(i)            the potential water quality impact caused by dredging, reclamation, pipeline laying and any other marine works activities during construction and the discharges during operation, in particular the potential impacts to the ecological resources due to increases in suspended sediment concentrations and potential decrease in dissolved oxygen; and the release of cooled water during operation.

(ii)          the potential impact to the ecological sensitive areas, including the vicinities along the marine portion of the Project which are frequented by the Chinese White Dolphins and Finless Porpoise;

(iii)         The potential ecological impacts arising from the construction and operation of the Project, including loss of habitats, disturbance to wildlife and pollution, if any, caused by run-off;

(iv)        The potential fisheries impacts during the construction and operation of the Project, including the potential loss of fishing grounds, spawning and nursery grounds of fish and shrimp;

(v)          The potential noise and air pollution impacts to sensitive receivers during the construction and operation of the Project;

(vi)        The potential landscape and visual impacts caused by reclamation, LNG Terminal and associated facilities, including storage tanks, infrastructures, structures, LNG carriers and associated works on existing and planned sensitive receivers, during the construction and operation of the Project;

(vii)       The potential glare impacts on the nearby sensitive receivers during operation of the Project;

(viii)     The potential impacts of various types of wastes to be generated from the construction and operation of the Project, in particular the dredged sediment during reclamation;

(ix)        The potential waste management issue associated with the use of filling materials such as marine sand and inert construction and demolition material (C&DM) for reclamation during construction of the Project;

(x)          The potential hazard to life on the general public and the workers of the Project due to the LNG storage, transfer and the marine transportation within HKSAR;

(xi)        The potential cumulative environmental impacts of the Project, through interaction or in combination with other existing, committed and planned developments in the vicinity of the Project, and those impacts may have a bearing on the environmental acceptability of the Project. Consideration shall be given to account for the impacts from likely concurrent projects;

(xii)       The potential impact on site of cultural heritage during the construction of the Project.

 

3.3       Consideration of Alternative Location, Layout and Construction Methods for the South Soko Option

 

3.3.1    Need for the Project

 

            The Applicant shall present in the EIA the information on the need for the Project and the Project’s implementation programme.

 

3.3.2    Consideration of different options on LNG provision

 

The EIA study shall take into consideration with clear and objective comparison of the environmental benefits and disbenefits of the different options for the provision of LNG to HKSAR and also with or without the proposed developments.  The options to be considered should include the proposed LNG terminal and gas pipeline option linking to other possible LNG sources.

 

3.3.3    Consideration of different site locations

 

The EIA study shall take into consideration with clear and objective comparison of the environmental benefits and disbenefits of different site location. The applicant shall compare the main environmental impacts and provide reasons for selecting the proposed site locations and the part environmental factors played in the selection shall be described.  This is particularly relevant to the size and location of the facility, the size of reclamations, the extent of dredging for the navigation channel, the extent of natural slope cutting, submarine pipeline alignment, submarine power cable, submarine water main, construction method, number and size of the fuel tanks and piers.  In formulating the preferred options, the Applicant shall seek to avoid adverse environmental effects to the maximum practicable extent.

 

3.3.4    Consideration of Different Layouts and Design Options

 

The Applicant shall present in the EIA report the considerations of alternative reclamation layouts and internal layout and design (such as location of various infrastructures and facilities) of the facilities, including alignment/option to the submarine natural gas pipeline, submarine power cable, submarine water main, the size and configuration of the approach channel and turning circle, with regard to avoiding or minimising the associated environmental impacts.  In addition, the applicant shall consider adopting a design to avoid the sensitive environment between Tai A Chau and Siu A Chau, ie, a shorter channel or approach from the western side, etc.

 

The Applicant shall present information on the requirement on the size of the terminal in relation to the number of tankers per unit time, with regard to optimise the size of the facility.

3.3.5    Consideration of Alternative Construction Methods and Sequence of Works

Having regard to the cumulative effects of the construction period and the severity of the construction impacts to the affected sensitive receivers, the EIA study shall explore alternative construction methods and sequences of works for the Project, with a view to avoiding adverse environmental impacts to the maximum practicable extent. A comparison of the environmental benefits and dis-benefits of applying different construction methods and sequence of works shall be made with a view to recommending the preferred option to avoid adverse on-site and off-site environmental impact to the maximum practicable extent.

 

3.3.6    Consideration of Pipeline Construction Method and Alignment

The EIA shall explore different pipeline construction method, including underground pipeline option.  If the submarine pipeline option is selected, the Applicant shall consider alternative submarine pipeline alignment to avoid or minimize any potential impacts to the ecologically valuable habitats, including Sha Chau and Lung Kwu Chau Marine Park; the habitat of the Indo-Pacific Hump-Backed Dolphin; potential southwest Lantau Marine Park at Fan Lau and habitats of Finless Porpoise.

 

3.3.7    Selection of Preferred Scenario

Taking into consideration of the findings in Sections 3.3.2 to 3.3.6 above, the Applicant shall provide justifications and recommend the preferred reclamation layout and method and the internal layout and design of the facility that will avoid or minimize adverse environmental effects arising from the Project and shall adequately describe the part that environmental factors played in arriving at the final selection.

 

3.4       Technical Requirements for the South Soko Option

 

            The Applicant shall conduct the EIA study to address the environmental aspects as described in Sections 3.1, 3.2 and 3.3 above. The assessment shall be based on the best and latest information available during the course of the EIA study. The Applicant shall assess the cumulative environmental impacts from the Project with other interacting projects. The Applicant shall include in the EIA report details of the construction programme and methodologies.

 

 

3.4.1    Air Quality Impact

 

3.4.1.1 The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines as stated in Section 1 of Annex 4 and Annex 12 of the TM for evaluating and assessing the air quality impact due to the construction and operation of the Project, as stipulated in Sections 1.2 and 1.3 above.

 

3.4.1.2 The study area for air quality impact assessment shall generally be defined by a distance of 500 metres from the boundary of the project site, and it shall be extended to include major emission sources such as power station and large industrial establishment that may have a bearing on the environmental acceptability of the Project. For this Project, the assessment shall include the existing and planned/ committed air sensitive receivers within the study area as well as areas where the air quality may be potentially affected by the Project. Such assessment shall be based on the best available information at the time of the assessment.

 

3.4.1.3 The air quality impact assessment shall include the following:

 

(i)     Background and Analysis of Activities

 

(a)        Provide background information relating to air quality issues relevant to the Project, e.g. description of the types of activities of the Project that may affect air quality during both construction and operation stages.

 

(b)        Present background air quality levels in the assessment area for the purpose of evaluating cumulative constructional and operational air quality impacts.

 

(c)        Consider alternative construction methods/phasing programmes and alternative modes of operation to minimize the constructional and operational air quality impact;

 

(d)        Consider the potential leakage of LNG into the atmosphere identified in Section 3.7.9.1(v) during the operation of the project.

 

(ii)    Identification of Air Sensitive Receivers (ASRs) and Examination of Emission/ Dispersion Characteristics

 

(a)    Identify and describe existing and planned/committed ASRs that would be affected by the Project, including those indicated on the relevant Outline Zoning Plans, Development Permission Area Plans, Outline Development Plans and Layout Plans. The Applicant shall select the assessment points of the identified ASRs that represent the worst impact point of these ASRs. A map showing the location and description such as name of buildings, their uses and height of the selected assessment points shall be given. The separation distances of these ASRs from the nearest emission sources shall also be given. For phased development, the Applicant shall review the development programme against the different construction stages to assess whether the occupiers of the early phases could become ASRs to be affected by the construction works of later phases.

 

(b)    Provide an exhaustive list of air pollutant emission sources, which are to have impact related to the Project based on the analysis of constructional and operational activities in Section 3.4.1.3(i) above.  Besides, if the likely concurrent projects are identified relevant, its possible emissions shall also be taken into account in the air quality impact assessment. Examples of construction stage emission sources include stockpiling, blasting, concrete batching, marine construction plant and vehicular movements on unpaved haul roads on site. Confirmation of validity of the assumptions and magnitude of the activities (e.g. volume of construction material handled) shall be obtained from the relevant government departments/authorities and documented.

 

(iii)    Construction Phase Air Quality Impact

 

(a)    The Applicant shall follow the requirements stipulated under the Air Pollution Control (Construction Dust) Regulation to ensure that construction dust which may arise as a result of the works are controlled within the relevant standards as stipulated in Section 1 of Annex 4 of the TM.  A monitoring and audit programme for the construction phase shall be devised to verify the effectiveness of the control measures.

 

(b)    If the Applicant anticipates that the Project will give rise to significant construction dust impacts likely to exceed recommended limits in the TM at the ASRs despite the incorporation of the dust control measures proposed in accordance with Section 3.4.1.3(iii)(a) above, a quantitative assessment should be carried out to evaluate the construction dust impact at the identified ASRs.  The Applicant shall follow the methodology set out in Section 3.4.1.3(v) below when carrying out the quantitative assessment.

 

(iv)   Operational Phase Air Quality Impact

 

The Applicant shall calculate the expected air pollutant concentrations, such as odour, gaseous emission and dust, at the identified ASRs based on an assumed reasonably worst-case scenario.  The evaluation shall be based on the strength of the emission sources identified in Section 3.4.1.3(ii)(b) above. The Applicant shall follow Section 3.4.1.3(v) below when carrying out the quantitative assessment.

 

 (v)    Quantitative Assessment Methodology

 

(a)    The Applicant shall apply the general principles enunciated in the modelling guidelines in Appendices B-1 to B-3 while making allowance for the specific characteristics of the Project.  This specific methodology must be documented in such level of details (preferably with tables and diagrams) to allow the readers of the assessment report to grasp how the model is set up to simulate the situation at hand without referring to the model input files.  Details of the calculation of the emission rates of air pollutants for input to the modelling shall be presented in the report.  The Applicant must ensure consistency between the text description and the model files.  In case of doubt, prior agreement between the Applicant and the Director on the specific modelling details should be sought.

 

(b)    The Applicant shall identify the key/representative air pollutant parameters (types of pollutants and the averaging time concentration) to be evaluated and provide explanation for choosing these parameters for the assessment of the impact of the Project.

 

(c)    The Applicant shall calculate the overall cumulative air quality impact at the identified ASRs identified under Section 3.4.1.3(ii) above and compare these results against the criteria set out in Section 1 of Annex 4 in the TM.  The predicted air quality impacts (both unmitigated and mitigated) shall be presented in the form of summary table and pollution contours, to be evaluated against the relevant air quality standards and on any effect they may have on the land use implications.  Plans of a suitable scale should be used to present pollution contour to allow buffer distance requirements to be determined properly.

 

(vi)   Mitigation Measures for Non-compliance

 

The Applicant shall propose remedies and mitigating measures where the predicted air quality impact exceeds the criteria set in Section 1 of Annex 4 in the TM.  If these measures will result in any constraints on future land use planning outside the project site, the Applicant shall liaise with the relevant government departments/authorities and document the agreement in the EIA Report in order to demonstrate that the proposed measures are feasible and practicable.  The Applicant shall demonstrate quantitatively that the residual impacts after incorporation of the proposed mitigating measures will comply with the criteria stipulated in Section 1 of Annex 4 in the TM.

 

(vii)  Submission of Model Files

 

Input and output file(s) of the model run(s) shall be submitted to the Director in electronic format.

 

3.4.2                       Noise Impact

 

3.4.2.1                 The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing noise impact as stated in Annexes 5 and 13 of the TM respectively.

 

3.4.2.2                  The noise impact assessment shall include the following:

 

(i)  Determination of Assessment Area

 

    The noise impact assessment shall include all areas within 300m from the project boundary.  Subject to the agreement of the Director, the assessment area could be reduced accordingly if the first layer of noise sensitive receivers, closer than 300m from the project boundary, provides acoustic shielding to those receivers located further away.   Similarly, subject to the agreement of the Director, the assessment area shall be expanded to include NSRs at distance greater than 300m from the boundaries of proposed developments which are noise sensitive if they may be affected by the construction and operation of the proposed developments.

 

(ii) Provision of Background Information

 

    The Applicant shall provide all background information relevant to the project including relevant previous and current studies. Unless involved in the planning standards, no existing noise levels are particularly required.

 

(iii)    Identification of Noise Sensitive Receivers

 

(a)                 The Applicant shall refer to Annex 13 of the TM when identifying the noise sensitive receivers (NSRs). The NSRs shall include all existing ones and all planned or committed noise sensitive developments and uses earmarked on the relevant Outline Zoning Plans, Outline Development Plans, Layout Plans and other relevant published land use plans.

 

(b)  A map showing the location and description such as name of building, use, and floor of each and every selected assessment point shall be given.  For planned noise sensitive land uses without committed site layouts, the Applicant should use the relevant planning parameters to work out representative site layouts for operational noise assessment purpose.

 

(iv)   Provision of an Emission Inventory of the Noise Sources

 

    The Applicant shall provide an inventory of noise sources including construction equipment for construction noise assessment; fixed plant equipment for operational noise assessment. Confirmation of the validity of the inventory shall be obtained from the relevant government departments/authorities and documented.

 

(v)    Construction Noise Assessment

 

(a)     The Applicant shall carry out assessment of noise impact from construction (excluding percussive piling) of the project during day time, i.e. 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., on weekdays other than general holidays in accordance with the methodology stipulated in paragraphs 5.3. and 5.4 of Annex 13 of the TM.  The criteria in Table 1B of Annex 5 of the TM shall be adopted in the assessment.

 

(b)     To minimize the construction noise impact, alternative construction methods to replace percussive piling shall be proposed as far as practicable. In case blasting works will be involved, it should be carried out, as far as practicable, outside the sensitive hours of 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. on Monday to Saturday and any time on a general holiday, including Sunday.  For blasting that must be carried out during the above-mentioned sensitive hours, the noise impact associated with the removal of debris and rocks should be fully assessed and adequate mitigation measures should be recommended to reduce the noise impact as appropriate.

 

(c)     If the unmitigated construction noise levels are found to exceed the relevant criteria, the Applicant shall propose practicable direct mitigation measures (including movable barriers, enclosures, quieter alternative methods, re-scheduling and restricting hours of operation of noisy tasks) to minimize the impact.  If the mitigated noise levels still exceed the relevant criteria, the duration of the noise exceedance shall be given.

 

(d)     The Applicant shall formulate a reasonable construction programme as far as practicable such that no work will be required in the restricted hours as defined under the Noise Control Ordinance (NCO).  In case the Applicant needs to evaluate whether construction works in restricted hours as defined under the NCO are feasible or not in the context of programming construction works, reference should be made to the relevant technical memoranda issued under the NCO.  Regardless of the results of the construction noise impact assessment for restricted hours, the Noise Control Authority will process the Construction Noise Permit (CNP) application, if necessary, based on the NCO, the relevant technical memoranda issued under the NCO, and the contemporary conditions/situations.  This aspect should be explicitly stated in the noise chapter and the conclusions and recommendations chapter in the EIA report.

 

(vi)   Operational Noise Impact Assessment

 

(a)              The Applicant shall analyze the scope of the proposed system to identify noise sources for the purpose of noise impact assessment.

 

(b)  The Applicant shall calculate the expected noise using standard acoustic principles.  Calculations for the expected noise shall be based on assumed plant inventories and utilization schedule for the worst case scenario.  The Applicant shall calculate the noise levels taking into account of correction of tonality, impulsiveness and intermittency in accordance with the Technical Memorandum for the Assessment of Noise from Places other than Domestic Premises, Public Places or Construction Sites.

 

(c)   The Applicant shall present the relevant noise levels in Leq (30 mins) at the NSRs at various representative floor levels (in mPD) in tables and plans of suitable scales. Quantitative assessment at the NSRs for proposed fixed noise source(s) shall be carried out and compared against the criteria set out in Table 1A of Annex 5 of the TM.

 

(d) Proposals for Noise Mitigation Measures: (i) The Applicant shall propose direct technical remedies in all situations where the predicted noise level exceeds the criteria set out in Table 1A of Annex 5 of the TM to protect the affected NSRs.  Specific reasons for not adopting certain direct technical remedies in the design to reduce the noise to a level meeting the criteria in the TM or to maximize the protection for the NSRs should be clearly quantified and laid down. The total number of dwellings and other noise sensitive element that will be benefited by the provision of direct technical remedies should be provided; (ii) The total number of dwellings and other noise sensitive elements that will still be exposed to noise above the criteria with the implementation of all recommended direct technical remedies shall be quantified.

 

(vii)   Assessment of Side Effects and Constraints

 

The Applicant shall identify, assess and propose means to minimize any side effects and to resolve any potential constraints due to the inclusion of any recommended direct technical remedies.

 

(viii)  Evaluation of Constraints on Planned Noise Sensitive Developments/Land Uses

 

        For planned noise sensitive uses which will still be affected even with all practicable direct technical remedies in place, the Applicant shall propose, evaluate and confirm the practicality of additional measures within the planned noise sensitive uses and shall make recommendations on how these noise sensitive uses will be designed for the information of relevant parties.

 

        The Applicant shall take into account the agreed environmental requirements/constraints identified by the study to assess the development potential of the concerned sites which shall be made known to the relevant parties.

 

3.4.3    Water Quality Impact

 

3.4.3.1 The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing water pollution as stated in Annexes 6 and 14 of the TM respectively.

 

3.4.3.2 The study area for the purpose of water quality impact assessment shall cover the Southern, Southern Supplementary, Second Southern Supplementary, North Western, North Western Supplementary, Deep Bay Water Control Zones as designated under the Water Pollution Control Ordinance (Cap. 358, WPCO). This study area could be extended to cover other areas such as stream courses and the associated water system, existing and new drainage system, wetland, estuaries, coastal, marine and fresh water, groundwater system; and the associated catchment area(s) being impacted and to be identified during the course of the EIA study.

 

3.4.3.3 The Applicant shall identify and analyse all physical, chemical and biological      disruptions of marine, estuarine, fresh water, ground water system(s) and the associated catchment area(s) arising during the construction and operation of the Project. 

 

3.4.3.4 The water quality impact assessment shall cover the following, but not limited to, major areas of concern :

 

(i)          Construction and operational impacts arising from the reclamation and berthing facilities being proposed;

 

(ii)         Dredging of marine sediment for the construction and maintenance of navigation channel, turning circle and berthing area;

 

(iii)       Impacts arising from the laying, submarine trenching (such as, but not limited to, by means of dredging, ploughing and jetting), testing and commissioning, operation and maintenance of submarine gas pipeline;

 

(iv)       Construction impacts of any proposed water mains and power cable;

 

(v)        Impacts of thermal and chemical discharge due to treatment and disposal of spent cooled water from regasification facility;

 

(vi)       Impacts of potential on-site sewage treatment and disposal facilities;

 

(vii)     Impacts of potential spillage of fuel and LNG and treatment and disposal of ballast water during operational phase of the Project and transportation of LNG carrier.

 

3.4.3.5 Essentially the assessment shall address the following :

 

(i)  Collection and review of background information on the existing water system(s) and the respective catchment(s).

 

(ii)        Characterization of water and sediment quality based on existing information or site surveys/tests as appropriate.

 

(iii)       Identification and analysis of all existing and planned future activities and beneficial uses related to the water system(s) and identification of all water sensitive receivers.

 

(iv)      Establishment of pertinent water and sediment quality objectives, criteria and standards for the water system(s) and all the sensitive receivers.

 

(v)        Identification of any alteration of water courses, natural streams/ponds, wetland, change of shoreline or bathometry, change of flow regimes, change of ground water levels, change of catchment types or areas.

 

(vi)        Review the specific construction methods and configurations of the Project, such as, but are not limited to, the reclamation sides and configuration, design and configurations of the berthing facilities; the submarine gas pipeline alignment and its laying and submarine trenching method.

 

(vii)     Identification, analysis and quantification of all existing and likely future water and sediment pollution sources, including point discharges and non-point sources to surface water runoff, sewage, spent industrial wastewater from the Project such as, but are not limited to, cooled water, spent hydrostatic testing effluent and ballast water. Field investigation and laboratory tests shall be conducted as appropriate.  Establishment and provision of an emission inventory on the quantities and characteristics of all these pollution sources.

 

Impact Prediction

 

(viii)   Prediction and quantification, by mathematical modelling or other technique to be approved by EPD, of the impacts on the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers due to the construction and operation of the Project.  The mathematical modeling requirements are set out in Appendix C of this Study Brief.  Possible impacts include change in hydrology, flow regime, sediment erosion or deposition, water and sediment quality and the effects on the aquatic organism due to such changes in the affected water bodies.  The prediction shall take into account and include possible different construction stages or sequences, and different operation stages.  For the assessment of potential spillage of fuel and LNG, potential locations, quantities and rates of spillage should be identified and quantified. The spillage modeling assessment should cover combination of different tides, wind and season conditions.  Affected sensitive receivers should be identified by the assessment tool with indication of degree of severity.

 

(ix)        Assessment of the cumulative impacts due to other related concurrent and planned projects, activities or pollution sources within a boundary around the study area to be agreed by the Director, that may have a bearing on the environmental acceptability of the Project through mathematical modelling. This shall include the potential cumulative construction and operational water quality impacts arising from, inter alia, the associated works of the Project, the activities and planned projects to be approved by the Director when the programme of the Project and associated works is confirmed during the course of the EIA study.

 

Wastewater and Non-point Sources Pollution

 

(x) Assessment and quantification on the adequacy of existing and future sewerage infrastructure to treat and dispose of the wastewater identified above.  In general all waste water generated shall have to meet effluent discharge standards set out in the Technical Memorandum stipulated under the WPCO prior to discharge.

 

(xi)      Assessment and quantification of all existing and future water pollutants from non-point sources and analysis on the provision and adequacy of existing and future facilities to reduce such pollution.

 

Dredging, Submarine Trenching Works, Filling and Dumping

 

(xii)       Identification and quantification of all dredging, submarine trenching, fill extraction, back filling, reclamation, mud/sediment transportation and disposal activities and requirements. Potential fill source and dumping ground to be involved shall also be identified.  Field investigation, sampling and laboratory tests to characterize the sediment/mud concerned shall be conducted as appropriate.  The potential for the release of contaminants during dredging shall be addressed using the chemical testing results derived from sediment and marine water samples collected on site and relevant historic data.  Appropriate laboratory tests such as elutriate tests in accordance with the USACE method and sediment pore water (interstitial water) analyses shall be performed on the sediment samples to simulate and quantify the degree of mobilization of various contaminants such as metals, ammonia, nutrients, trace organic contaminants (including PCBs, PAHs, TBT and chlorinated pesticides) into the water column during dredging. The ranges of parameters to be analyzed; the number, location, depth of sediment, type and methods of sampling; sample preservation; and chemical laboratory test methods to be used shall be subject to the approval of the Director. The Applicant shall also address the pattern of the sediment deposition and the potential increase in turbidity and suspended solid levels in the water column and at the sensitive receivers due to the disturbance of sediments during dredging and back filling, dumping and submarine trenching.

 

(xiii) Prediction, quantification and assessment of impacts on the hydrodynamic regime, water and sediment quality of the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers due to the activities identified above. The prediction and quantification of impacts caused by, amongst others, sediment re-suspension and contaminants release shall be carried out by mathematical modeling (see modeling requirements set out in Appendix C of this Study Brief) or other techniques to be approved by the Director. 

 

(xiv)   Recommendation of appropriate mitigation measures to avoid or minimize the impacts identified above, in particular suitable mud dredging and disposal, submarine trenching and backfilling method(s).  The residual impacts on the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers with regard to the relevant water and sediment quality objective, criteria, standards or guidelines shall be assessed and quantified by mathematical modeling as set out in Appendix C in this Study Brief or other techniques to be approved by the Director.

 

(xv)    Identification and evaluation of the best practicable dredging, submarine trenching, backfilling, marine mud disposal and reclamation methods to minimize marine mud disturbance and dumping requirements and demand for fill sources based on the criterion that existing marine mud shall be left in place and not be disturbed as far as possible.

 

(xvi)  Prediction and quantification of cumulative impacts due to other dredging, filling or dumping activities within a boundary around the Study Area to be agreed by the Director shall also be predicted and quantified.

 

Mitigation

 

(xvii) Proposal of effective infrastructure upgrading or provision, water pollution prevention and mitigation measures to be implemented during the construction and operational stages so as to avoid and reduce the water and sediment quality impacts to within acceptable levels of standards.  Requirements to be incorporated in the Project contract document shall also be proposed.

 

(xviii) Best management practices to reduce storm water and non-point source pollution shall be investigated and proposed as appropriate. Attention shall be made to the water quality control and mitigation measures recommended in the Practice Note for Authorized Persons and Registered Structural Engineers on construction site drainage.

 

(xix)  Evaluation and quantification of residual impacts on the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers with regard to the appropriate water and sediment quality objectives, criteria, standards or guidelines using appropriate mathematical models as set out in Appendix C in this Study Brief or other techniques approved by the Director.

 

3.4.4  Waste Management Implications

 

3.4.4.1                    The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing waste management implications as stated in Annexes 7 and 15 of the TM.

 

3.4.4.2                  The assessment of waste management implications shall cover the following:

 

(i)     Analysis of Activities and Waste Generation

 

        The Applicant shall identify the quantity, quality and timing of the waste and chemical waste arising as a result of the construction and operation activities of the Project, based on the sequence and duration of these activities. The Applicant shall adopt the design, general layout, construction methods and programme that will maximise the use of public fill/inert C&DM for the reclamation works.

 

(ii)    Proposal for Waste Management

 

(a)    Prior to considering the disposal options for various types of wastes, opportunities for reducing waste generation, on-site or off-site re-use and recycling shall be evaluated.  Measures that can be taken in the planning and design stages e.g. by modifying the design approach and in the construction stage for maximizing waste reduction shall be separately considered.

 

(b)    After considering the opportunities for reducing waste generation and maximizing re-use, the types and quantities of the wastes required to be disposed of as a consequence shall be estimated and the disposal options for the wastes shall be described in detail. The disposal options recommended for each type of wastes shall take into account the result of the assessment in item (c) below.  The EIA report shall also state clearly the transportation routings and the frequency of the trucks/ vessels involved, any barging point or conveyor system to be used, the stockpiling areas and the disposal outlets for the wastes identified; and

 

(c)    The impact caused by handling (including stockpiling, labelling, packaging & storage), collection, transportation and disposal of wastes shall be addressed in detail and appropriate mitigation measures shall be proposed. This assessment shall cover the following areas :

 

-      potential hazard;

-      air and odour emissions;

-      noise;

-      wastewater discharge;

-         public transport; and

-        landscape and visual impacts, if any.

 

(iii)    Dredging, Filling and Dumping

 

(a)        The categories of sediments which are to be disposed of in accordance with a permit under the Dumping at Sea Ordinance (DASO) shall be identified by both chemical and biological tests and their quantities shall be estimated.  If the presence of any seriously contaminated sediment which requires Type 3 disposal is confirmed, the Applicant shall identify the most appropriate treatment and/or disposal arrangement and demonstrate its feasibility;

 

(b)        Identification and evaluation of the best practicable construction methods, treatment methods, in-situ/ex-situ arrangements, reuse/ recycling options and construction programme to minimize dredging and dumping requirements and demand for fill sources based on the criterion that existing marine mud shall be left in place and not to be disturbed as far as possible and the inert C&DM shall be used to maximum practicable extent for reclamation works.

 

3.4.5    Ecological Impact (Both Terrestrial and Aquatic)

 

3.4.5.1                    The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing ecological impact as stated in Annexes 8 and 16 of the TM respectively.

 

3.4.5.2                    The study area for the purpose of terrestrial ecological assessment shall include all areas within 500 metres from the site boundary of the land based works areas or the area likely to be impacted by the Project.  For aquatic ecology, the study area shall be the same as the water quality impact assessment as stipulated in 3.4.3.2 or the area likely to be impacted by the Project.

 

3.4.5.3                                In the ecological impact assessment, the Applicant shall examine the flora, fauna and other components of the ecological habitats within the assessment area, including those highlighted in sub-section 3.2 above.  The aim shall be to protect, maintain or rehabilitate the natural environment.  In particular, the Project shall avoid impacts on recognized sites of conservation importance and other ecological sensitive areas.  The assessment shall identify and quantify as far as possible the potential ecological impacts arising from the construction and operation of the Project and in combination with those cumulative impacts from the associated works of the Project, both directly by physical disturbance and indirectly by changes of water quality, sedimentation patterns and hydrodynamic regime.  Details of specific requirements on the assessment of impacts on the Finless Porpoise and the Chinese White Dolphin are stipulated in sub-section 3.4.5.5 below.

 

3.4.5.4 The assessment shall include the following major tasks:

 

(i)     review the findings of relevant previous studies/surveys and collate all available information on the ecological characters of the study area;

 

(ii)       evaluate the information collected from sub-section 3.4.5.4 (i) above, and identify any information gap relating to the assessment of potential ecological impacts to the aquatic and terrestrial environment including the Sha Chau and Lung Kwu Chau Marine Park; the potential southwest Lantau Marine Park in Fan Lau fish spawning and nursery area in the southern waters including the fish fry area in Tai A Chau.

 

(iii)     carry out necessary field surveys, including any advanced surveys commenced before this EIA, for a total duration of at least 6 months (which shall cover the wet season), and investigations to verify the information collected, fill the information gaps identified in sub-section 3.4.5.4 (ii) above and fulfill the objectives of the EIA study;

 

(iv)    carry out a boat survey of at least eight months covering the period from October to May (both inclusive) for the Chinese White Dolphin and Finless Porpoise in waters adjacent to Sokos area, the proposed submarine gas pipeline alignment, the proposed submarine power cable and the potential submarine water main.  The methodology of the boat survey shall be consistent with the previous related studies, in particular the “Population Biology of the Indo-Pacific Hump-backed Dolphin in Hong Kong Waters” (Wildlife Monograph No. 144, page 1-65, published in October 2000).

 

(v)      establish an ecological profile of the study area based on data of relevant previous studies/surveys and results of additional ecological field surveys, and describe the characteristics of each habitat found.  Major information to be provided shall include:

 

(a)    description of the physical environment, including all recognized sites of conservation importance and ecologically sensitive areas, and assess whether these sites will be affected by the Project or not;

 

(b)    habitats maps of suitable scale 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, seasonal patterns, inter-dependence of the habitats and species, and presence of any features of ecological importance;

 

(d)    representative colour photographs 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;

 

(f)              investigate and describe the existing wildlife uses of the various habitats with special attention to those wildlife groups and habitats with conservation interests

 

(g)    using suitable methodology to identify and quantify as far as possible any direct, indirect (e.g. changes in water qualities, hydrodynamics properties, sedimentation rates and patterns, hydrology), on-site, off-site, primary, secondary and cumulative ecological impacts on the wildlife groups and habitats mentions in sub-section 3.4.5.4 (v) above, such as destruction of habitats, reduction of species abundance/diversity, loss of feeding grounds, reduction of ecological carrying capacity, habitat fragmentation; and in particular the following:

 

-                     habitat loss and disturbance to wildlife during construction stage;

-   potential impacts on horseshoe crabs and their nursery areas;

-   potential impacts associated with reclamation, dredging, spoil disposal, extraction and placement of fill materials during construction, and in particular to the benthic communities;

-   potential impacts to the Chinese White Dolphin and Finless Porpoise including noise disturbance, adverse effect caused by possible underwater blasting or percussive pilling, possible contaminants from disturbed or dredged sediment, and loss of habitat and food supply;

-   potential impacts to the fish spawning and nursery area in the southern waters including the fish fry area in Tai A Chau

-   deterioration of environmental quality (e.g. water quality) and the subsequent impacts to the biological communities during operation stage;;

-   potential impacts to the avifauna during operational stage due to the increase in noise, air pollution, lighting, glare and physical barrier; and

-   potential loss and disturbance to natural shoreline, inter-tidal habitats and coral communities during the construction and operation stages of the project.

 

(vi)      demonstrate that the ecological impacts due to the construction and operation of the Project are avoided by design to the maximum practicable extent;

 

(vii)     evaluate the significance and acceptability of the ecological impacts identified using well-defined criteria;

 

(viii)   recommend all possible alternatives (such as different alignment, built-form and/or using other construction methods and sequences) and practicable mitigation measures to avoid, minimize and/or compensate for the adverse ecological impacts identified, such as :

(a)    measures to recreate the natural inter-tidal and sub-tidal habitats lost;

(b)    reinstatement of habitats temporarily affected by the Project to its original state and if possible with some enhancement features;

 

(ix)          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;

 

(x)           determine and quantify as far as possible the residual ecological impacts after implementation of the proposed mitigation measures;

 

(xi)          evaluate the severity and acceptability of the residual ecological impacts using well-defined criteria; and

 

(xii)         assess the risk and the potential impact to environmental sensitive receivers, including the marine and terrestrial habitats, due to LNG leakage and the consequential fire hazard.  The assessment shall be based on the possible leakage scenarios identified in 3.4.9, and also the water quality assessment required in 3.4.3.4 (vii) and recommend any practicable measures to reduce the risk to marine and terrestrial habitats;

 

(xiii)       review the need for and recommend any ecological monitoring programme required.

 

3.4.5.5  Impacts on Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins

 

                        The assessment of impacts on Finless Porpoise (Neophocaena phocaenoides)and Chinese White Dolphins (Sousa chinensis) shall include the following tasks:

(i) review and incorporate the findings of relevant studies including the previous Finless Porpoise and dolphin studies, in particular the Population Biology of the Indo-Pacific Hump-backed Dolphin in Hong Kong Waters (Wildlife Monograph No. 144, page 1-65, published in October 2000), and collate all available information regarding the ecological characters of the study area;

(ii)        evaluate the information collected and identify any information gap relating to the assessment of potential impacts on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins;

(iii)      as part of the requirement under sub-section 3.4.5.4 (iii) above, carry out necessary field surveys and investigations to verify the information collected, fill the information gaps identified, if any, and to fulfil the objectives of the EIA study;

(iv)      present all relevant survey findings including previous surveys conducted in relevant studies together with surveys carried out under this study;

(v)       assess the direct and indirect impacts, including water quality changes, release of toxic contaminants from sediments and their consequential ecological effects on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins, during the construction and operational stages of the Project.  The assessment shall include:

 

(a)    impacts and disturbance to the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins associated with reclamation, dredging, fill extraction, filling, transportation and disposal of dredged sediment;

(b)    impacts on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins of the possible use of underwater blasting and underwater percussive pilling during construction stage, due to shock wave and underwater noise generated;

(c)    predicted water quality changes and consequential ecological impacts on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins.  Parameters to be assessed should include suspended solids, dissolved oxygen and contaminants present in disturbed or dredged sediment.  The significance and acceptability of the predicted changes shall be evaluated using well-defined criteria;

(d)    ecological impacts on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins associated with potential bioaccumulation of toxic contaminants released from the disturbed or dredged sediment.  The significance and acceptability of the predicted impacts shall be evaluated using well-defined criteria;

(e)    potential risk on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins colliding with marine vessels during construction;

(f)     change in marine traffic volume, distribution and pattern during operational stage, and the consequential increase or decrease in risk of Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins colliding with marine vessels; and

(g)    potential risk on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins due to chemical spillages arising from vehicle accident during operation of the Project.

(vi)  assess the overall cumulative ecological impacts on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins due to this Project, any associated works of the Project, and any nearby development;

(vii)    identify precautionary and mitigatory measures for protection of the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphins.  The proposed measures may include, but need not be limited to, those recommended in previous EIA studies and dolphin studies;

(viii)    review the need for and recommend any Finless Porpoise and dolphin monitoring programme; and

(ix)     assess and determine the acceptability of the overall residual ecological  impact on the Finless Porpoise and Chinese White Dolphin, after implementation of the precautionary and mitigatory measures as identified under sub-section 3.4.5.5 (vii) above.

 

 

3.4.6    Fisheries Impact

 

3.4.6.1                              The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing fisheries impact as stated in Annexes 9 and 17 of the TM.

 

3.4.6.2                             The study area for fisheries impact assessment shall be the same as for marine water quality impact assessment as set out in sub-section 3.4.3.2 above and any areas likely to be impacted by the Project.  Special attention shall be given to the potential loss of fishing grounds, spawning and nursery grounds of fish and shrimp; adverse impacts on the fish spawning and nursery area in the southern waters including the fish fly area at Tai A Chau.

 

3.4.6.3                            The assessment shall cover any potential impact on capture fisheries, during the construction and operation of the Project and in combination with those cumulative impacts from associated works of the Project.

 

3.4.6.4                              Existing information regarding the study area shall be reviewed.  Based on the review results, the study shall identify data gap and determine if there is any need for field surveys.  If field surveys are considered necessary, the study shall recommend appropriate methodology, duration and timing for the field surveys.

 

3.4.6.5 The fisheries impact assessment shall include the following:-

 

(i)     description of the physical environmental background;

 

(ii)  description and quantification of existing capture fisheries;

 

(iii)       description and quantification as far as possible the existing fisheries resources (e.g. major fisheries products and stocks);

 

(iv)     identification of parameters (e.g. water quality parameters), including any potential toxic contaminates released from the dredged sediment identified in sub-section 3.4.3.5 (viii) above and areas (e.g. breeding/spawning grounds and nursery grounds) that are important to fisheries and will be affected;

 

(v)      identification and quantification any direct/indirect and on-site/off-site impacts to fisheries (e.g. deterioration of fishing grounds, loss of breeding grounds, reduction of catch/productivity);

 

(vi)      evaluation of impacts and make recommendations for any environmental mitigation measures with details on justification, description of scope and programme, feasibility as well as manpower and financial implications including those related to subsequent management and maintenance requirements of the proposals.  The Applicant shall evaluate the potential fisheries enhancement effect of the bridge piers and rock armour protection to the affected area; and

 

(vii)   review the need for monitoring during the construction and operation phases of the Project and, if necessary, propose a monitoring and audit programme.

 

 

3.4.7    Landscape and Visual Impact

 

3.4.7.1 The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing landscape and visual impacts as stated in Annexes 10 and 18 of the TM respectively. 

 

3.4.7.2 The Applicant shall address the potential landscape and visual impacts, including but not limited to the following major areas of concern:

 

(i)     the potential impacts on areas of high landscape value during the construction and operation of the Project, in particular the expansion areas and the new EVA; and

 

(ii)    the potential visual impacts, obstruction and glare interference with the key views to the sensitive receivers.

 

3.4.7.3  The assessment area for the landscape impact assessment shall include all areas within a 500 metres distance from the boundary of the Project. The assessment area for the visual impact assessment shall be defined by the visual envelope of the Project.

 

3.4.7.4 The Applicant shall review relevant outline zoning plans, outline development plans, layout plans, planning briefs and studies which may identify areas of high landscape value. Any guidelines on landscape strategies, landscape frameworks, designated view corridors, open space networks, landscape links and urban design concepts that may affect the appreciation of the Project shall also be reviewed. The aim is to gain an insight to the future outlook of the area so as to assess whether the project can fit into surrounding setting.  Any conflict with published land use plans shall be highlighted and appropriate follow-up action shall be recommended.

 

3.4.7.5 The Applicant shall describe, appraise, analyse and evaluate the existing and future landscape resources and character of the assessment area. A system shall be derived for judging the impact significance as required under the TM.  The sensitivity of the landscape framework and its ability to accommodate change shall be particularly focused on. The Applicant shall identify the degree of compatibility of the Project with the existing and planned landscape settings.  The assessment shall quantify the potential landscape impacts as far as possible.  Clear mapping of the landscape impact is required.

 

3.4.7.6 The Applicant shall assess the visual impacts of the Project.  A system shall be derived for judging visual impact significance as required under the TM. Clear illustrations of visual impact assessment are required.  The assessment shall include the following:

 

(i)     identification and plotting of visibility envelope of the Project within the assessment area;

 

(ii)    identification of the key groups of sensitive receivers within the visibility contours and their views at both ground level/sea level and elevated vantage points;

 

(iii)    description of the visual compatibility of the Project with the surrounding, the existing and the planned setting, and its obstruction and interference with the key views of the adjacent areas.

 

(iv)   description of the severity of visual impacts in terms of distance, nature and number of sensitive receivers.  The visual impacts of the Project with and without mitigation measures shall also be included so as to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed mitigation measures.

 

3.4.7.7 The Applicant shall evaluate the merits of preservation in totality, in parts or total destruction of existing landscape and the establishment of a new landscape character area if it will be affected by the Project.  Alternative layout, design and construction methods that would avoid or reduce the identified landscape and visual impacts shall be evaluated for comparison before adopting other mitigation or compensatory measures to alleviate the impacts. The Applicant shall recommend mitigation measures to minimize the adverse effects identified above, including provision of a landscape design.  The mitigation measures proposed shall not only be concerned with damage reduction but shall also include consideration of potential enhancement of existing landscape and visual quality. 

 

3.4.7.8 The mitigation measures shall include preservation of vegetation and natural coastline, provision of screen planting, amenity areas and open spaces, re-vegetation of disturbed land, compensatory planting, sensitive design of structures, colour scheme and texture of materials used and any measures to mitigate the impact on existing land uses.  Parties shall be identified for the on going management and maintenance of the proposed mitigation works to ensure their effectiveness throughout the operation phase of the Project.  A practical programme and funding proposal for the implementation of the recommended measures shall be provided. 

 

3.4.7.9 Annotated illustration such as coloured perspective drawings, plans and section/elevation diagrams, oblique aerial photographs, photographs particularly taken at vantage points and computer-generated photomontage shall be adopted to fully illustrate the landscape and visual impacts of the Project to the satisfactory of Director.

 

3.4.7.10  All computer graphics shall be compatible with Microstation DGN file format.  The Applicant shall record the technical details such as system set-up, software, data files and function in preparing the illustration that may need to be submitted for verification of the accuracy of the illustrations.

 

3.4.8    Impact on Cultural Heritage

 

3.4.8.1                    The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing the cultural heritage impacts as stated in Annexes 10 and 19 of the TM.

 

3.4.8.2                    The cultural heritage impact assessment shall include terrestrial and marine archaeological investigation as well as built heritage investigation.  The Applicant shall refer to Appendix D of this EIA study brief for the detailed requirements.

 

(i)  Terrestrial Archaeological Investigation

 

The study areas for terrestrial archaeological investigation shall include areas within 100 metres from the boundary of the Project site and works areas that may have adverse impacts on known and unknown archaeological sites.   Special attention shall paid to Tai A Chau Archaeological Site, Tung Wan Archaeological Site (Shek Pik) and Shek Pik Rock Carving (Declared Monument). The Applicant shall engage a qualified archaeologist who shall obtain a License from the Antiquities Authority before undertaking the field evaluation under the provision of the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap. 53). The Applicant shall draw necessary reference to relevant sections of Appendix D of this study brief on the Criteria for Cultural Heritage Impact Assessment. 

 

(ii)       Marine Archaeological Investigation

 

The Applicant shall engage a qualified marine archaeologist to review available information to identify whether there is any possible existence of sites of objects of cultural heritage, for example shipwreck, within any seabed that will be affected by the marine works of the Project. The result of the review shall be presented as a written report and charts. If sites or objects of cultural heritage are found, A Marine Archaeological Investigation (MAI) shall be required. The MAI shall be carried out by a qualified marine archaeologist who shall obtain a Licence from the Antiquities Authority under the provision of the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap.53). The requirements of the MAI are set out in Annex to Appendix D of this EIA Study Brief.

 

(iii)     In the event that the investigations as stated in Sections 3.4.8.2 (i) and (ii) proved to be inadequate, the Applicant shall undertake supplementary studies as agreed by the Director. 

 

3.4.8.3                    The Applicant shall demonstrate that the disturbance, including access, to those sites of cultural heritage are avoided to the maximum practicable extent by modification of the layout and design of the Project. For those sites of cultural heritage that might still be directly and indirectly affected by the Project, the Applicant shall recommend practicable mitigation measures and monitoring to avoid or keep the adverse impacts on the site of cultural heritage to the minimum. A checklist including the affected sites of cultural heritage, impacts identified, recommended mitigation measures as well as the implementation agent and period shall also be included in the EIA report.

 

 

3.4.9       Hazard To Life

 

3.4.9.1    The risk to life due to marine transportation within HKSAR and the risk to life due to LNG Terminal operation, including jetty transfer, berthing navigation, tank farm storage and pipeline transfer of LNG, shall be assessed. The Applicant shall follow the criteria for evaluating hazard to life as stated in Annexes 4 and 22 of the TM in conducting hazard assessment and include the following in the assessment:

 

(i)      identification of all credible hazardous scenarios which may cause fatalities;

 

(ii)   execution of a Quantitative Risk Assessment expressing population risks in both individual and societal term;

 

(iii)   comparison of individual and societal risks with the Criteria for Evaluating Hazard to Life stipulated in Annex 4 of the TM; and

 

(iv)                        identification and assessment of practicable and cost effective risk mitigation measures as appropriate;

 

(v)                             identification of all LNG leakage scenarios and propose a safety management system for the operational phase of the project with an aim to contain any accidental leakage in short notice and to prevent and/or minimize any leakage.

 

3.4.9.2   All the fundamental assumptions that might affect the conclusion of the quantitative risk assessment shall be listed out and clearly presented.  The assumptions could be presented in a table form and should include all the planning assumptions, population figures, planned and committed developments, height of the fire plume, number of marine transits, type and size of tankers, vessel speed, and scenarios being considered. 

 

3.7.9.3  The approach and methodology to be used in the hazard assessment shall take into account relevant previous studies (including any international practices and studies), and to be agreed with the Director.

 

 

3.4.10   Land Contamination Impact

 

3.4.10.1           To prevent contamination problems arising from the future operation of the proposed LNG Terminal and associated facilities, in accordance with ProPECC Practice Note No. 3/94 “Contaminated Land Assessment and Remediation”, the Applicant shall:

(i)       identify the possible sources of contamination in the operational phase of the proposed LNG Terminal and associated facilities; and

(ii)     formulate appropriate operational practices, waste management strategies and precautionary measures to be implemented on site for prevention of contamination problems when it becomes operational.

 

3.4.11   Summary of Environmental Outcomes

 

          The EIA report shall contain a summary of the key environmental outcomes arising from the EIA study, including the population and environmentally sensitive areas protected, environmentally friendly designs recommended, key environmental problems avoided, compensation areas included and the environmental benefits of environmental protection measures recommended.

 

3.4.12 Summary of Environmental Performance Comparison

 

             The EIA report shall contain a summary table comparing the Environmental Performance of the South Soko Option and other possible Options.  The table shall compare the key design parameters (including size of reclamation; reclamation method, dredging volume, waste generation, pipeline details etc); the key sensitive receivers and the environmental impacts. 

 

3.4.13   Environmental Monitoring and Audit (EM&A) Requirements

 

3.4.13.1           The Applicant shall identify and justify in the EIA study whether there is any need for EM&A activities during construction and operation phases of the Project and, if affirmative, to define the scope of EM&A requirements for the Project.

 

3.4.13.2           Subject to confirmation of EIA findings, the Applicant shall comply with requirements as stipulated in Annex 21 of the TM. The Applicant shall also propose real-time reporting of monitoring data for the Project through a dedicated internet website.

 

3.4.13.3           The Applicant shall prepare a project implementation schedule (in the form of a checklist as shown in Appendix E to this EIA study brief) containing the EIA study recommendations and mitigation measures with reference to the implementation programme.

 

3.5        The Scope for the Blackpoint Option

 

             The scope for the Blackpoint Option of this EIA study shall cover the Project scope for the Blackpoint Option as proposed in the Project Profile and shall include the relevant works and facilities mentioned in Section 1.3 above.  The EIA study shall address the key issues described below, together with any other key issues identified during the course of the EIA study and the cumulative environmental impacts of the Project, through interaction or in combination with other existing, committed, planned and known potential developments in the vicinity of the Project:

 

(i)     the potential water quality impact caused by dredging, reclamation and any other marine works activities during construction and the discharges during operation, in particular the potential impacts to the ecological resources due to increases in suspended sediment concentrations and potential decrease in dissolved oxygen; and the release of cooled water during operation.

(ii)    The potential impact to the ecological sensitive areas, including the vicinities along the marine portion of the Project which are frequented by the Chinese White Dolphins;

(iii)   The potential ecological impacts arising from the construction and operation of the Project, including loss of habitats, disturbance to wildlife and pollution, if any, caused by run-off;

(iv)   The potential fisheries impacts during the construction and operation of the Project, including the potential loss of fishing grounds, spawning and nursery grounds of fish and shrimp;

(v)   The potential noise and air pollution impacts to sensitive receivers during the construction and operation of the Project;

(vi)   The potential landscape and visual impacts caused by reclamation, LNG Terminal and associated facilities, including storage tanks, infrastructures, structures, LNG carriers and associated works on existing and planned sensitive receivers, during the construction and operation of the Project;

(vii) The potential glare impacts on the nearby sensitive receivers during operation of the Project;

(viii)  The potential impacts of various types of wastes to be generated from the construction and operation of the Project, in particular the dredged sediment during reclamation;

(ix)   The potential waste management issue associated with the use of filling materials such as marine sand and inert construction and demolition material (C&DM) for reclamation during construction of the Project;

(x)   The potential hazard to life impacts on the general public and the workers of the Project due to the LNG storage, transfer and the marine transportation within HKSAR;

(xi) The potential cumulative environmental impacts of the Project, through interaction or in combination with other existing, committed and planned developments in the vicinity of the Project, this including the nearby Power Station, Steel Mill, River Trade Terminal, Sludge Treatment Facilities, Animal Carcass Treatment Facility, extension of WENT Landfills, etc and those impacts may have a bearing on the environmental acceptability of the Project. Consideration shall be given to account for the impacts from likely concurrent projects.  In particular, the cumulative impacts to the indigenous village (Lung Kwu Tan) should be considered.

(xii)  The potential impact on site of cultural heritage during the construction of the Project.

 

 

3.6     Consideration of Alternative Location, Layout and Construction Methods for the Blackpoint Option

 

3.6.     Need for the Project

 

The Applicant shall present in the EIA the information on the need for the Project and the Project’s implementation programme.

 

3.6.2     Consideration of different options on LNG provision

 

The EIA study shall take into consideration with clear and objective comparison of the environmental benefits and disbenefits of the different options for the provision of LNG to HKSAR and also with or without the proposed developments.  The options to be considered should include the proposed LNG terminal and gas pipeline option linking to other possible LNG sources.

 

3.6.3     Consideration of different site locations

 

The EIA study shall take into consideration with clear and objective comparison of the environmental benefits and disbenefits of different site locations. The applicant shall compare the main environmental impacts and provide reasons for selecting the proposed site locations and the part environmental factors played in the selection shall be described.  This is particularly relevant to the size and location of the facility, the size of reclamations, the extent of dredging for the navigation channel, the extent of natural slope cutting, construction method, number and size of the fuel tanks and piers.  In formulating the preferred options, the Applicant shall seek to avoid adverse environmental effects to the maximum practicable extent.

 

3.6.4     Consideration of Different Layouts and Design Options

The Applicant shall present in the EIA report the considerations of alternative reclamation layouts and internal layout and design (such as location of various infrastructures and facilities) of the facilities with regard to avoiding or minimising the associated environmental impacts.

 

The Applicant shall present information on the requirement on the size of the terminal in relation to the number of tankers per unit time, with regard to optimise the size of the facility.

 

3.6.5     Consideration of Alternative Construction Methods and Sequence of Works

Having regard to the cumulative effects of the construction period and the severity of the construction impacts to the affected sensitive receivers, the EIA study shall explore alternative construction methods and sequences of works for the Project, with a view to avoiding adverse environmental impacts to the maximum practicable extent. A comparison of the environmental benefits and dis-benefits of applying different construction methods and sequence of works shall be made with a view to recommending the preferred option to avoid adverse on-site and off-site environmental impact to the maximum practicable extent.

 

3.6.6     Selection of Preferred Scenario

             Taking into consideration of the findings in Sections 3.6.2 to 3.6.5 above, the Applicant shall provide justifications and recommend the preferred reclamation layout and method and the internal layout and design of the facility that will avoid or minimize adverse environmental effects arising from the Project and shall adequately describe the part that environmental factors played in arriving at the final selection.

 

 

3.7      Technical Requirements for the Blackpoint Option

 

             The Applicant shall conduct the EIA study to address the environmental aspects as described in Sections 3.1, 3.5 and 3.6 above. The assessment shall be based on the best and latest information available during the course of the EIA study. The Applicant shall assess the cumulative environmental impacts from the Project with other interacting projects. The Applicant shall include in the EIA report details of the construction programme and methodologies.

 

 

3.7.1     Air Quality Impact

 

3.7.1.1  The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines as stated in Section 1 of Annex 4 and Annex 12 of the TM for evaluating and assessing the air quality impact due to the construction and operation of the Project, as stipulated in Sections 1.2 and 1.3 above.

 

3.7.1.2  The study area for air quality impact assessment shall generally be defined by a distance of 500 metres from the boundary of the project site, and it shall be extended to include major emission sources such as power station and large industrial establishment that may have a bearing on the environmental acceptability of the Project. For this Project, the assessment shall include the existing and planned/ committed air sensitive receivers within the study area as well as areas where the air quality may be potentially affected by the Project. Such assessment shall be based on the best available information at the time of the assessment.

 

3.7.1.3  The air quality impact assessment shall include the following:

 

(i)     Background and Analysis of Activities

 

(a)    Provide background information relating to air quality issues relevant to the Project, e.g. description of the types of activities of the Project that may affect air quality during both construction and operation stages.

 

(b)  Present background air quality levels in the assessment area for the purpose of evaluating cumulative constructional and operational air quality impacts.

 

(c) Consider alternative construction methods/phasing programmes and alternative modes of operation to minimize the constructional and operational air quality impact.

 

(d)                Consider the potential leakage of LNG into the atmosphere identified in Section 3.7.9.1(v) during the operation of the project.

 

 

(ii)     Identification of Air Sensitive Receivers (ASRs) and Examination of Emission/ Dispersion Characteristics

 

(a)  Identify and describe existing and planned/committed ASRs that would be affected by the Project, including those indicated on the relevant Outline Zoning Plans, Development Permission Area Plans, Outline Development Plans and Layout Plans. The Applicant shall select the assessment points of the identified ASRs that represent the worst impact point of these ASRs. A map showing the location and description such as name of buildings, their uses and height of the selected assessment points shall be given. The separation distances of these ASRs from the nearest emission sources shall also be given. For phased development, the Applicant shall review the development programme against the different construction stages to assess whether the occupiers of the early phases could become ASRs to be affected by the construction works of later phases.

 

(b)  Provide an exhaustive list of air pollutant emission sources, which are to have impact related to the Project based on the analysis of constructional and operational activities in Section 3.7.1.3(i) above.  Besides, if the likely concurrent projects are identified relevant, its possible emissions shall also be taken into account in the air quality impact assessment. Examples of construction stage emission sources include stockpiling, blasting, concrete batching, marine construction plant and vehicular movements on unpaved haul roads on site. Confirmation of validity of the assumptions and magnitude of the activities (e.g. volume of construction material handled) shall be obtained from the relevant government departments/authorities and documented.

 

(iii)    Construction Phase Air Quality Impact

 

(a)  The Applicant shall follow the requirements stipulated under the Air Pollution Control (Construction Dust) Regulation to ensure that construction dust which may arise as a result of the works are controlled within the relevant standards as stipulated in Section 1 of Annex 4 of the TM.  A monitoring and audit programme for the construction phase shall be devised to verify the effectiveness of the control measures.

 

(b)  If the Applicant anticipates that the Project will give rise to significant construction dust impacts likely to exceed recommended limits in the TM at the ASRs despite the incorporation of the dust control measures proposed in accordance with Section 3.7.1.3(iii)(a) above, a quantitative assessment should be carried out to evaluate the construction dust impact at the identified ASRs.  The Applicant shall follow the methodology set out in Section 3.7.1.3(v) below when carrying out the quantitative assessment.

 

(iv)    Operational Phase Air Quality Impact

 

The Applicant shall calculate the expected air pollutant concentrations, such as odour, gaseous emission and dust, at the identified ASRs based on an assumed reasonably worst-case scenario.  The evaluation shall be based on the strength of the emission sources identified in Section 3.7.1.3(ii)(b) above. The Applicant shall follow Section 3.7.1.3(v) below when carrying out the quantitative assessment.

 

(v)    Quantitative Assessment Methodology

 

(a)  The Applicant shall apply the general principles enunciated in the modelling guidelines in Appendices B-1 to B-3 while making allowance for the specific characteristics of the Project.  This specific methodology must be documented in such level of details (preferably with tables and diagrams) to allow the readers of the assessment report to grasp how the model is set up to simulate the situation at hand without referring to the model input files.  Details of the calculation of the emission rates of air pollutants for input to the modelling shall be presented in the report.  The Applicant must ensure consistency between the text description and the model files.  In case of doubt, prior agreement between the Applicant and the Director on the specific modelling details should be sought.

 

(b)   The Applicant shall identify the key/representative air pollutant parameters (types of pollutants and the averaging time concentration) to be evaluated and provide explanation for choosing these parameters for the assessment of the impact of the Project.

 

(c)    In view of the high concentrations of background ozone in the vicinity of the proposed project site in Blackpoint, the Ozone Limiting Method (OLM) should be used to estimate the conversation ratio of NOx to NO2, if NO2 has been identified as a key/representative air pollutant.

 

(d)    The Applicant shall calculate the overall cumulative air quality impact at the identified ASRs identified under Section 3.7.1.3(ii) above and compare these results against the criteria set out in Section 1 of Annex 4 in the TM.  The predicted air quality impacts (both unmitigated and mitigated) shall be presented in the form of summary table and pollution contours, to be evaluated against the relevant air quality standards and on any effect they may have on the land use implications.  Plans of a suitable scale should be used to present pollution contour to allow buffer distance requirements to be determined properly.

 

(vi)    Mitigation Measures for Non-compliance

 

The Applicant shall propose remedies and mitigating measures where the predicted air quality impact exceeds the criteria set in Section 1 of Annex 4 in the TM.  If these measures will result in any constraints on future land use planning outside the project site, the Applicant shall liaise with the relevant government departments/authorities and document the agreement in the EIA Report in order to demonstrate that the proposed measures are feasible and practicable.  The Applicant shall demonstrate quantitatively that the residual impacts after incorporation of the proposed mitigating measures will comply with the criteria stipulated in Section 1 of Annex 4 in the TM.

 

(vii)   Submission of Model Files

 

Input and output file(s) of the model run(s) shall be submitted to the Director in electronic format.

 

3.7.2  Noise Impact

 

3.7.2.1                                The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing noise impact as stated in Annexes 5 and 13 of the TM respectively.

 

3.7.2.2                                The noise impact assessment shall include the following:

 

(i)     Determination of Assessment Area

 

               The noise impact assessment shall include all areas within 300m from the project boundary.  Subject to the agreement of the Director, the assessment area could be reduced accordingly if the first layer of noise sensitive receivers, closer than 300m from the project boundary, provides acoustic shielding to those receivers located further away.   Similarly, subject to the agreement of the Director, the assessment area shall be expanded to include NSRs at distance greater than 300m from the boundaries of proposed developments which are noise sensitive if they may be affected by the construction and operation of the proposed developments.

 

(ii)    Provision of Background Information

 

The Applicant shall provide all background information relevant to the project including relevant previous and current studies. Unless involved in the planning standards, no existing noise levels are particularly required.

 

(iii)    Identification of Noise Sensitive Receivers

 

(a)     The Applicant shall refer to Annex 13 of the TM when identifying the noise sensitive receivers (NSRs). The NSRs shall include all existing ones and all planned or committed noise sensitive developments and uses earmarked on the relevant Outline Zoning Plans, Outline Development Plans, Layout Plans and other relevant published land use plans.

 

(b)  A map showing the location and description such as name of building, use, and floor of each and every selected assessment point shall be given.  For planned noise sensitive land uses without committed site layouts, the Applicant should use the relevant planning parameters to work out representative site layouts for operational noise assessment purpose.

 

(iv)    Provision of an Emission Inventory of the Noise Sources

 

The Applicant shall provide an inventory of noise sources including construction equipment for construction noise assessment; fixed plant equipment for operational noise assessment. Confirmation of the validity of the inventory shall be obtained from the relevant government departments/authorities and documented.

 

(v)    Construction Noise Assessment

 

(a)     The Applicant shall carry out assessment of noise impact from construction (excluding percussive piling) of the project during day time, i.e. 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., on weekdays other than general holidays in accordance with the methodology stipulated in paragraphs 5.3. and 5.4 of Annex 13 of the TM.  The criteria in Table 1B of Annex 5 of the TM shall be adopted in the assessment.

 

(b)    To minimize the construction noise impact, alternative construction methods to replace percussive piling shall be proposed as far as practicable. In case blasting works will be involved, it should be carried out, as far as practicable, outside the sensitive hours of 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. on Monday to Saturday and any time on a general holiday, including Sunday.  For blasting that must be carried out during the above-mentioned sensitive hours, the noise impact associated with the removal of debris and rocks should be fully assessed and adequate mitigation measures should be recommended to reduce the noise impact as appropriate.

 

(c)     If the unmitigated construction noise levels are found to exceed the relevant criteria, the Applicant shall propose practicable direct mitigation measures (including movable barriers, enclosures, quieter alternative methods, re-scheduling and restricting hours of operation of noisy tasks) to minimize the impact.  If the mitigated noise levels still exceed the relevant criteria, the duration of the noise exceedance shall be given.

 

(d)    The Applicant shall formulate a reasonable construction programme as far as practicable such that no work will be required in the restricted hours as defined under the Noise Control Ordinance (NCO).  In case the Applicant needs to evaluate whether construction works in restricted hours as defined under the NCO are feasible or not in the context of programming construction works, reference should be made to the relevant technical memoranda issued under the NCO.  Regardless of the results of the construction noise impact assessment for restricted hours, the Noise Control Authority will process the Construction Noise Permit (CNP) application, if necessary, based on the NCO, the relevant technical memoranda issued under the NCO, and the contemporary conditions/situations.  This aspect should be explicitly stated in the noise chapter and the conclusions and recommendations chapter in the EIA report.

 

(vi)    Operational Noise Impact Assessment

 

(a)              The Applicant shall analyze the scope of the proposed system to identify noise sources for the purpose of noise impact assessment.

 

(b)            The Applicant shall calculate the expected noise using standard acoustic principles.  Calculations for the expected noise shall be based on assumed plant inventories and utilization schedule for the worst case scenario.  The Applicant shall calculate the noise levels taking into account of correction of tonality, impulsiveness and intermittency in accordance with the Technical Memorandum for the Assessment of Noise from Places other than Domestic Premises, Public Places or Construction Sites.

 

(c)           The Applicant shall present the relevant noise levels in Leq (30 mins) at the NSRs at various representative floor levels (in mPD) in tables and plans of suitable scales. Quantitative assessment at the NSRs for proposed fixed noise source(s) shall be carried out and compared against the criteria set out in Table 1A of Annex 5 of the TM.

 

(d)          Proposals for Noise Mitigation Measures: (i) The Applicant shall propose direct technical remedies in all situations where the predicted noise level exceeds the criteria set out in Table 1A of Annex 5 of the TM to protect the affected NSRs.  Specific reasons for not adopting certain direct technical remedies in the design to reduce the noise to a level meeting the criteria in the TM or to maximize the protection for the NSRs should be clearly quantified and laid down. The total number of dwellings and other noise sensitive element that will be benefited by the provision of direct technical remedies should be provided; (ii) The total number of dwellings and other noise sensitive elements that will still be exposed to noise above the criteria with the implementation of all recommended direct technical remedies shall be quantified.

 

(vii)   Assessment of Side Effects and Constraints

 

The Applicant shall identify, assess and propose means to minimize any side effects and to resolve any potential constraints due to the inclusion of any recommended direct technical remedies.

 

(viii)  Evaluation of Constraints on Planned Noise Sensitive Developments/Land Uses

 

For planned noise sensitive uses which will still be affected even with all practicable direct technical remedies in place, the Applicant shall propose, evaluate and confirm the practicality of additional measures within the planned noise sensitive uses and shall make recommendations on how these noise sensitive uses will be designed for the information of relevant parties.

 

The Applicant shall take into account the agreed environmental requirements/constraints identified by the study to assess the development potential of the concerned sites which shall be made known to the relevant parties.

 

 

3.7.3     Water Quality Impact (Black Point Option)

 

3.7.3.1            The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing water pollution as stated in Annexes 6 and 14 of the TM respectively.

 

3.7.3.2  The study area for the purpose of water quality impact assessment shall cover the North Western, North Western Supplementary, Deep Bay Water Control Zones as designated under the Water Pollution Control Ordinance (Cap. 358, WPCO). This study area could be extended to cover other areas such as stream courses and the associated water system, existing and new drainage system, wetland, estuaries, coastal, marine and fresh water, groundwater system; and the associated catchment area(s) being impacted and to be identified during the course of the EIA study.

 

3.7.3.3 The Applicant shall identify and analyse all physical, chemical and biological disruptions of marine, estuarine, fresh water, ground water system(s) and the associated catchment area(s) arising during the construction and operation of the Project. 

 

3.7.3.4  The water quality impact assessment shall cover the following, but not limited to, major areas of concern :

 

(i)           Construction and operational impacts arising from the reclamation and berthing facilities being proposed;

 

(ii)         Dredging of marine sediment for the construction and maintenance of navigation channel, turning circle and berthing area;

 

(iii)        Impacts of thermal and chemical discharge due to treatment and disposal of spent cooled water from regasification facility;

 

(iv)       Impacts of sewage treatment and disposal issues;

 

(v)         Impacts of potential spillage of fuel and LNG, and treatment and disposal of ballast water during operational phase of the Project and transportation of LNG carrier.

 

3.7.3.5  Essentially the assessment shall address the following :

 

(i)    Collection and review of background information on the existing water system(s) and the respective catchment(s).

 

(ii)  Characterization of water and sediment quality based on existing information or site surveys/tests as appropriate.

 

(iii) Identification and analysis of all existing and planned future activities and beneficial uses related to the water system(s) and identification of all water sensitive receivers.

 

(iv)Establishment of pertinent water and sediment quality objectives, criteria and standards for the water system(s) and all the sensitive receivers.

 

(v)  Identification of any alteration of water courses, natural streams/ponds, wetland, change of shoreline or bathometry, change of flow regimes, change of ground water levels, change of catchment types or areas.

 

(vi)  Review the specific construction methods and configurations of the Project, such as, but are not limited to, the reclamation sides and configuration, design and configuration of the berthing facilities.

 

(vii)  Identification, analysis and quantification of all existing and likely future water and sediment pollution sources, including point discharges and non-point sources to surface water runoff, sewage, spent industrial wastewater from the Project such as, but are not limited to, cooled water and ballast water. Field investigation and laboratory tests shall be conducted as appropriate.  Establishment and provision of an emission inventory on the quantities and characteristics of all these pollution sources.

 

Impact Prediction

 

(viii)                        Prediction and quantification, by mathematical modelling or other technique approved by EPD, of the impacts on the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers due to the construction and operation of the Project.  The mathematical modeling requirements are set out in Appendix C of this Study Brief.  Possible impacts include change in hydrology, flow regime, sediment erosion or deposition, water and sediment quality and the effects on the aquatic organism due to such changes in the affected water bodies.  The prediction shall take into account and include possible different construction stages or sequences, and different operation stages.  For the assessment of potential spillage of fuel and LNG, potential locations, quantities and rates of spillage should be identified and quantified. The spillage modeling assessment should cover combination of different tides, wind and season conditions.  Affected sensitive receivers should be identified by the assessment tool with indication of degree of severity.

 

(ix)    Assessment of the cumulative impacts due to other related concurrent and planned projects, activities or pollution sources within a boundary around the study area to be agreed by the Director, that may have a bearing on the environmental acceptability of the Project through mathematical modelling. This shall include the potential cumulative construction and operational water quality impacts arising from, inter alia, the associated works of the Project, the activities and planned projects to be approved by the Director when the programme of the Project and associated works is confirmed during the course of the EIA study.

 

Wastewater and Non-point Sources Pollution

 

(x)     Assessment and quantification on the adequacy of existing and future sewerage infrastructure to treat and dispose of the wastewater identified above.  In general all waste water generated shall have to meet with the effluent discharge standards set out in the Technical Memorandum stipulated under the WPCO prior to discharge.

 

(xi) Assessment and quantification of all existing and future water pollutants from non-point sources and analysis on the provision and adequacy of existing and future facilities to reduce such pollution.

 

Dredging, Filling and Dumping

 

(xii)  Identification and quantification of all dredging, fill extraction, back filling, reclamation, mud/sediment transportation and disposal activities and requirements. Potential fill source and dumping ground to be involved shall also be identified.  Field investigation, sampling and laboratory tests to characterize the sediment/mud concerned shall be conducted as appropriate.  The potential for the release of contaminants during dredging shall be addressed using the chemical testing results derived from sediment and marine water samples collected on site and relevant historic data.  Appropriate laboratory tests such as elutriate tests in accordance with the USACE method and sediment pore water (interstitial water) analyses shall be performed on the sediment samples to simulate and quantify the degree of mobilization of various contaminants such as metals, ammonia, nutrients, trace organic contaminants (including PCBs, PAHs, TBT and chlorinated pesticides) into the water column during dredging. The ranges of parameters to be analyzed; the number, location, depth of sediment, type and methods of sampling; sample preservation; and chemical laboratory test methods to be used shall be subject to the approval of the Director. The Applicant shall also address the pattern of the sediment deposition and the potential increase in turbidity and suspended solid levels in the water column and at the sensitive receivers due to the disturbance of sediments during dredging, back filling and dumping.

 

(xiii)                      Prediction, quantification and assessment of impacts on the hydrodynamic regime, water and sediment quality of the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers due to the activities identified above. The prediction and quantification of impacts caused by, amongst others, sediment re-suspension and contaminants release shall be carried out by mathematical modeling (see modeling requirements set out in Appendix C of this Study Brief) or other techniques to be approved by the Director. 

 

(xiv)                        Recommendation of appropriate mitigation measures to avoid or minimize the impacts identified above, in particular suitable mud dredging and disposal, and  backfilling method(s).  The residual impacts on the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers with regard to the relevant water and sediment quality objective, criteria, standards or guidelines shall be assessed and quantified by mathematical modeling as set out in Appendix C in this Study Brief or other techniques to be approved by the Director.

 

(xv) Identification and evaluation of the best practicable dredging, backfilling, marine mud disposal and reclamation methods to minimize marine mud disturbance and dumping requirements and demand for fill sources based on the criterion that existing marine mud shall be left in place and not be disturbed as far as possible.

 

(xvi)                       Prediction and quantification of cumulative impacts due to other dredging, filling or dumping activities within a boundary around the Study Area to be agreed by the Director shall also be predicted and quantified.

 

Mitigation

 

(xvii)                      Proposal of effective infrastructure upgrading or provision, water pollution prevention and mitigation measures to be implemented during the construction and operational stages so as to avoid and reduce the water and sediment quality impacts to within acceptable levels of standards.  Requirements to be incorporated in the Project contract document shall also be proposed.

 

(xviii)                      Best management practices to reduce storm water and non-point source pollution shall be investigated and proposed as appropriate. Attention shall be made to the water quality control and mitigation measures recommended in the Practice Note for Authorized Persons and Registered Structural Engineers on construction site drainage.

 

(xix)                        Evaluation and quantification of residual impacts on the water system(s) and the sensitive receivers with regard to the appropriate water and sediment quality objectives, criteria, standards or guidelines using appropriate mathematical models as set out in Appendix C in this Study Brief or other techniques to be approved by the Director.

 

 

3.7.4  Waste Management Implications

 

3.7.4.1  The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing waste management implications as stated in Annexes 7 and 15 of the TM.

 

3.7.4.2  The assessment of waste management implications shall cover the following:

 

(i)       Analysis of Activities and Waste Generation

 

                       The Applicant shall identify the quantity, quality and timing of the waste and chemical waste arising as a result of the construction and operation activities of the Project, based on the sequence and duration of these activities. The Applicant shall adopt the design, general layout, construction methods and programme that will maximise the use of public fill/inert C&DM for the reclamation works.

 

(ii)      Proposal for Waste Management

 

(a)  Prior to considering the disposal options for various types of wastes, opportunities for reducing waste generation, on-site or off-site re-use and recycling shall be evaluated.  Measures that can be taken in the planning and design stages e.g. by modifying the design approach and in the construction stage for maximizing waste reduction shall be separately considered.

 

(b)         After considering the opportunities for reducing waste generation and maximizing re-use, the types and quantities of the wastes required to be disposed of as a consequence shall be estimated and the disposal options for the wastes shall be described in detail. The disposal options recommended for each type of wastes shall take into account the result of the assessment in item (c) below.  The EIA report shall also state clearly the transportation routings and the frequency of the trucks/ vessels involved, any barging point or conveyor system to be used, the stockpiling areas and the disposal outlets for the wastes identified; and

 

(c)        The impact caused by handling (including stockpiling, labelling, packaging & storage), collection, transportation and disposal of wastes shall be addressed in detail and appropriate mitigation measures shall be proposed. This assessment shall cover the following areas :

 

-     potential hazard;

-     air and odour emissions;

-     noise;

-     wastewater discharge;

-    public transport; and

-   landscape and visual impacts, if any.

 

(iii)     Dredging, Filling and Dumping

 

(a)      The categories of sediments which are to be disposed of in accordance with a permit under the Dumping at Sea Ordinance (DASO) shall be identified by both chemical and biological tests and their quantities shall be estimated.  If the presence of any seriously contaminated sediment which requires Type 3 disposal is confirmed, the Applicant shall identify the most appropriate treatment and/or disposal arrangement and demonstrate its feasibility;

 

(b)     Identification and evaluation of the best practicable construction methods, treatment methods, in-situ/ex-situ arrangements, reuse/ recycling options and construction programme to minimize dredging and dumping requirements and demand for fill sources based on the criterion that existing marine mud shall be left in place and not to be disturbed as far as possible and the inert C&DM shall be used to maximum practicable extent for reclamation works.

 

 

3.7.5       Ecological Impact (Both Terrestrial and Aquatic)

 

3.7.5.1   The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing ecological impact as stated in Annexes 8 and 16 of the TM respectively.

 

3.7.5.2    The study area for the purpose of terrestrial ecological assessment shall include all areas within 500 metres from the site boundary of the land based works areas or the area likely to be impacted by the Project.  For aquatic ecology, the study area shall be the same as the water quality impact assessment as stipulated in 3.7.3.2 or the area likely to be impacted by the Project.

 

3.7.5.3   In the ecological impact assessment, the Applicant shall examine the flora, fauna and other components of the ecological habitats within the assessment area, including those highlighted in sub-section 3.2 above.  The aim shall be to protect, maintain or rehabilitate the natural environment.  In particular, the Project shall avoid impacts on recognized sites of conservation importance and other ecological sensitive areas.  The assessment shall identify and quantify as far as possible the potential ecological impacts arising from the construction and operation of the Project and in combination with those cumulative impacts from associated works of the Project, both directly by physical disturbance and indirectly by changes of water quality, sedimentation patterns and hydrodynamic regime.  Details of specific requirements on the assessment of impacts on the Chinese White Dolphin are stipulated in sub-section 3.7.5.5 below.

 

3.7.5.4   The assessment shall include the following major tasks:

 

(i)     review the findings of relevant previous studies/surveys and collate all available information on the ecological characters of the study area;

 

(ii)    evaluate the information collected from sub-section 3.7.5.4 (i) above, and identify any information gap relating to the assessment of potential ecological impacts to the aquatic and terrestrial environment including the Sha Chau and Lung Kwu Chau Marine Park;

 

(iii)   carry out necessary field surveys, including any advanced surveys commenced before this EIA, for a total duration of at least 6 months (which shall cover the wet season), and investigations to verify the information collected, fill the information gaps identified in sub-section 3.7.5.4 (ii) above and fulfill the objectives of the EIA study;

 

(iv)    carry out a boat survey of at least eight months covering the period from October to May (both inclusive) for the Chinese White Dolphins in the waters adjacent to Blackpoint. The purpose of this survey is for direct comparison between the two potential sites (South Sokos and Blackpoint) .  If the Applicant decided to submit the EIA study only on the Blackpoint site, a boat survey of at least 4 months for the Chinese White Dolphin in waters adjacent to Blackpoint area shall be carried out.  The methodology of the boat survey shall be consistent with the previous related studies, in particular the Population Biology of the Indo-Pacific Hump-backed Dolphin in Hong Kong Waters (Wildlife Monograph No. 144, page 1-65, published in October 2000).

 

(v)   establish an ecological profile of the study area based on data of relevant previous studies/surveys and results of additional ecological field surveys, and describe the characteristics of each habitat found.  Major information to be provided shall include:

 

(a) description of the physical environment, including all recognized sites of conservation importance and ecologically sensitive areas, and assess whether these sites will be affected by the Project or not;

 

(b)  habitats maps of suitable scale 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, seasonal patterns, inter-dependence of the habitats and species, and presence of any features of ecological importance;

 

(d) representative colour photographs 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;

 

(f) investigate and describe the existing wildlife uses of the various habitats with special attention to those wildlife groups and habitats with conservation interests

 

(g)   using suitable methodology to identify and quantify as far as possible any direct, indirect (e.g. changes in water qualities, hydrodynamics properties, sedimentation rates and patterns, hydrology), on-site, off-site, primary, secondary and cumulative ecological impacts on the wildlife groups and habitats mentions in sub-section 3.7.5.4 (v) above, such as destruction of habitats, reduction of species abundance/diversity, loss of feeding grounds, reduction of ecological carrying capacity, habitat fragmentation; and in particular the following:

 

-                             habitat loss and disturbance to wildlife during construction stage;

-                             potential impacts on horseshoe crabs and their nursery areas;

-                             potential impacts associated with reclamation, dredging, spoil disposal, extraction and placement of fill materials during construction, and in particular to the benthic communities;

-       potential impacts to the Chinese White Dolphin including noise disturbance, adverse effect caused by possible underwater blasting or percussive pilling, possible contaminants from disturbed or dredged sediment, and loss of habitat and food supply;

-                             deterioration of environmental quality (e.g. water quality) and the subsequent impacts to the biological communities during operation stage;;

-                            potential impacts to the avifauna during operational stage due to the increase in noise, air pollution, lighting, glare and physical barrier; and

-                             potential loss and disturbance to natural shoreline, sandy shores, inter-tidal habitats and coral communities during the construction and operation stages of the Project

 

(vi) demonstrate that the ecological impacts due to the construction and operation of the Project are avoided by design to the maximum practicable extent;

 

(vii) evaluate the significance and acceptability of the ecological impacts identified using well-defined criteria;

 

(viii)  recommend all possible alternatives (such as different alignment, built-form and/or using other construction methods and sequences) and practicable mitigation measures to avoid, minimize and/or compensate for the adverse ecological impacts identified, such as :

 

(a)   measures to recreate the natural inter-tidal and sub-tidal habitats lost;

 

(b)  reinstatement of habitats temporarily affected by the Project to its original state and if possible with some enhancement features;

 

(ix) 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;

 

(x) determine and quantify as far as possible the residual ecological impacts after implementation of the proposed mitigation measures;

 

(xi) evaluate the severity and acceptability of the residual ecological impacts using well-defined criteria;

 

(xii) assess the risk and the potential impact to environmental sensitive receivers, including the marine and terrestrial habitats, due to LNG leakage and the consequential fire hazard.  The assessment shall based on the possible leakage scenarios identified in 3.7.9.1, and also the water quality assessment required in 3.7.3.4 (v) and recommend any practicable measures to reduce the risk to marine and terrestrial habitats;

 

(xiii)                    review the need for and recommend any ecological monitoring programme required.

 

3.7.5.5  Impacts on Chinese White Dolphins

 

             The assessment of impacts on Chinese White Dolphins (Sousa chinensis) shall include the following tasks:

(i)    review and incorporate the findings of relevant studies including the previous dolphin studies, in particular the Population Biology of the Indo-Pacific Hump-backed Dolphin in Hong Kong Waters (Wildlife Monograph No. 144, page 1-65, published in October 2000), and collate all available information regarding the ecological characters of the study area;

(ii)    evaluate the information collected and identify any information gap relating to the assessment of potential impacts on the Chinese White Dolphins;

(iii)   as part of the requirement under sub-section 3.7.5.4 (iii) above, carry out necessary field surveys and investigations to verify the information collected, fill the information gaps identified, if any, and to fulfil the objectives of the EIA study;

(iv)   present all relevant survey findings including previous surveys conducted in relevant studies together with surveys carried out under this study;

(v)   assess the direct and indirect impacts, including water quality changes, release of toxic contaminants from sediments and their consequential ecological effects on the Chinese White Dolphins, during the construction and operational stages of the Project.  The assessment shall include:

 

(a)    impacts and disturbance to the Chinese White Dolphins associated with reclamation, dredging, fill extraction, filling, transportation and disposal of dredged sediment;

(b)    impacts on the Chinese White Dolphins of the possible use of underwater blasting and underwater percussive pilling during construction stage, due to shock wave and underwater noise generated;

(c)    predicted water quality changes and consequential ecological impacts on the Chinese White Dolphins.  Parameters to be assessed should include suspended solids, dissolved oxygen and contaminants present in disturbed or dredged sediment.  The significance and acceptability of the predicted changes shall be evaluated using well-defined criteria;

(d)    ecological impacts on the Chinese White Dolphins associated with potential bioaccumulation of toxic contaminants released from the disturbed or dredged sediment.  The significance and acceptability of the predicted impacts shall be evaluated using well-defined criteria;

(e)    potential risk on the Chinese White Dolphins colliding with marine vessels during construction;

(f)     change in marine traffic volume, distribution and pattern during operational stage, and the consequential increase or decrease in risk of Chinese White Dolphins colliding with marine vessels; and

(g)    potential risk on the Chinese White Dolphins due to chemical spillages arising from vehicle accident during operation of the Project.

(vi)   assess the overall cumulative ecological impacts on the Chinese White Dolphins due to this Project, any associated works of the Project, and any nearby development;

(vii)   identify precautionary and mitigatory measures for protection of the Chinese White Dolphins.  The proposed measures may include, but need not be limited to, those recommended in previous EIA studies and dolphin studies;

(viii)  review the need for and recommend any dolphin monitoring programme; and

(ix)   assess and determine the acceptability of the overall residual ecological  impact on the Chinese White Dolphin, after implementation of the precautionary and mitigatory measures as identified under sub-section 3.7.5.5 (vii) above.

 

 

3.7.6       Fisheries Impact

 

3.7.6.1   The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing fisheries impact as stated in Annexes 9 and 17 of the TM.

 

3.7.6.2   The study area for fisheries impact assessment shall be the same as for marine water quality impact assessment as set out in sub-section 3.7.3.2 above and any areas likely to be impacted by the Project. Special attention shall be given to the potential loss of fishing grounds and impact to oyster farming.

 

3.7.6.3   The assessment shall cover any potential impact on both capture and culture fisheries, during the construction and operation of the Project and in combination with those cumulative impacts from associated works of the Project.

 

3.7.6.4   Existing information regarding the study area shall be reviewed.  Based on the review results, the study shall identify data gap and determine if there is any need for field surveys.  If field surveys are considered necessary, the study shall recommend appropriate methodology, duration and timing for the field surveys.

 

3.7.6.5   The fisheries impact assessment shall include the following:-

 

(i)     description of the physical environmental background;

 

(ii)   description and quantification of existing capture fisheries, mariculture and oyster farming activities;

 

(iii)   description and quantification as far as possible the existing fisheries resources (e.g. major fisheries products and stocks);

 

(iv) identification of parameters (e.g. water quality parameters), including any potential toxic contaminates released from the dredged sediment identified in sub-section 3.7.3.5 (viii) above and areas (e.g. breeding/spawning grounds and nursery grounds) that are important to fisheries and will be affected;

 

(v)   identification and quantification any direct/indirect and on-site/off-site impacts to fisheries (e.g. deterioration of fishing grounds, loss of breeding grounds, reduction of catch/productivity and water quality to mariculture and oyster farming activities);

 

(vi) evaluation of impacts and make recommendations for any environmental mitigation measures with details on justification, description of scope and programme, feasibility as well as manpower and financial implications including those related to subsequent management and maintenance requirements of the proposals.  The Applicant shall evaluate the potential fisheries enhancement effect of the bridge piers and rock armour protection to the affected area; and

 

(vii)   review the need for monitoring during the construction and operation phases of the Project and, if necessary, propose a monitoring and audit programme.

 

3.7.7       Landscape and Visual Impact

 

3.7.7.1  The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing landscape and visual impacts as stated in Annexes 10 and 18 of the TM respectively. 

 

3.7.7.2    The Applicant shall address the potential landscape and visual impacts, including but not limited to the following major areas of concern:

 

(i)     the potential impacts on areas of high landscape value during the construction and operation of the Project, in particular the expansion areas and the new EVA; and

 

(ii)    the potential visual impacts, obstruction and glare interference with the key views to the sensitive receivers.

 

3.7.7.3    The assessment area for the landscape impact assessment shall include all areas within a 500 metres distance from the boundary of the Project. The assessment area for the visual impact assessment shall be defined by the visual envelope of the Project.

 

3.7.7.4    The Applicant shall review relevant outline zoning plans, outline development plans, layout plans, planning briefs and studies which may identify areas of high landscape value. Any guidelines on landscape strategies, landscape frameworks, designated view corridors, open space networks, landscape links and urban design concepts that may affect the appreciation of the Project shall also be reviewed. The aim is to gain an insight to the future outlook of the area so as to assess whether the project can fit into surrounding setting.  Any conflict with published land use plans shall be highlighted and appropriate follow-up action shall be recommended.

 

3.7.7.5    The Applicant shall describe, appraise, analyse and evaluate the existing and future landscape resources and character of the assessment area. A system shall be derived for judging the impact significance as required under the TM.  The sensitivity of the landscape framework and its ability to accommodate change shall be particularly focused on. The Applicant shall identify the degree of compatibility of the Project with the existing and planned landscape settings.  The assessment shall quantify the potential landscape impacts as far as possible.  Clear mapping of the landscape impact is required.

 

3.7.7.6    The Applicant shall assess the visual impacts of the Project.  A system shall be derived for judging visual impact significance as required under the TM. Clear illustrations of visual impact assessment are required.  The assessment shall include the following:

 

(i)     identification and plotting of visibility envelope of the Project within the assessment area;

 

(ii)    identification of the key groups of sensitive receivers within the visibility contours and their views at both ground level/sea level and elevated vantage points;

 

(iii)    description of the visual compatibility of the Project with the surrounding, the existing and the planned setting, and its obstruction and interference with the key views of the adjacent areas.

 

(iv)   description of the severity of visual impacts in terms of distance, nature and number of sensitive receivers.  The visual impacts of the Project with and without mitigation measures shall also be included so as to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed mitigation measures.

 

3.7.7.7    The Applicant shall evaluate the merits of preservation in totality, in parts or total destruction of existing landscape and the establishment of a new landscape character area if it will be affected by the Project.  Alternative layout, design and construction methods that would avoid or reduce the identified landscape and visual impacts shall be evaluated for comparison before adopting other mitigation or compensatory measures to alleviate the impacts. The Applicant shall recommend mitigation measures to minimize the adverse effects identified above, including provision of a landscape design.  The mitigation measures proposed shall not only be concerned with damage reduction but shall also include consideration of potential enhancement of existing landscape and visual quality. 

 

3.7.7.8    The mitigation measures shall include preservation of vegetation and natural coastline, provision of screen planting, amenity areas and open spaces, re-vegetation of disturbed land, compensatory planting, sensitive design of structures, colour scheme and texture of materials used and any measures to mitigate the impact on existing land uses.  Parties shall be identified for the on going management and maintenance of the proposed mitigation works to ensure their effectiveness throughout the operation phase of the Project.  A practical programme and funding proposal for the implementation of the recommended measures shall be provided. 

 

3.7.7.9    Annotated illustration such as coloured perspective drawings, plans and section/elevation diagrams, oblique aerial photographs, photographs particularly taken at vantage points and computer-generated photomontage shall be adopted to fully illustrate the landscape and visual impacts of the Project to the satisfactory of Director.

 

3.7.7.10  All computer graphics shall be compatible with Microstation DGN file format.  The Applicant shall record the technical details such as system set-up, software, data files and function in preparing the illustration that may need to be submitted for verification of the accuracy of the illustrations.

 

3.7.8       Impact on Cultural Heritage

 

3.7.8.1    The Applicant shall follow the criteria and guidelines for evaluating and assessing the cultural heritage impacts as stated in Annexes 10 and 19 of the TM.

 

3.7.8.2    The cultural heritage impact assessment shall include terrestrial and marine archaeological investigation as well as built heritage investigation.  The Applicant shall refer to Appendix D of this EIA study brief for the detailed requirements.

 

(i)    Terrestrial Archaeological Investigation

 

The study areas for terrestrial archaeological investigation shall include areas within 100 metres from the boundary of the Project Site and works areas that may have adverse impacts on known and unknown archaeological sites.   The Applicant shall engage a qualified archaeologist who shall obtain a License from the Antiquities Authority before undertaking the field evaluation under the provision of the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap. 53). The Applicant shall draw necessary reference to relevant sections of Appendix D of this study brief on the Criteria for Cultural Heritage Impact Assessment. 

 

(ii)   Marine Archaeological Investigation

 

        The Applicant shall engage a qualified marine archaeologist to review available information to identify whether there is any possible existence of sites of objects of cultural heritage, for example shipwreck, within any seabed that will be affected by the marine works of the Project. The result of the review shall be presented as a written report and charts. If sites or objects of cultural heritage are found, A Marine Archaeological Investigation (MAI) shall be required. The MAI shall be carried out by a qualified marine archaeologist who shall obtain a Licence from the Antiquities Authority under the provision of the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap.53). The requirement of the MAI are set out in Annex to Appendix D of this EIA Study Brief.

 

(iii)   In the event that the investigations as stated in Sections 3.7.8.2 (i) and (ii) proved to be inadequate, the Applicant shall undertake supplementary studies as agreed by the Director. 

 

3.7.8.3   The Applicant shall demonstrate that the disturbance, including access, to those sites of cultural heritage are avoided to the maximum practicable extent by modification of the layout and design of the Project. For those sites of cultural heritage that might still be directly and indirectly affected by the Project, the Applicant shall recommend practicable mitigation measures and monitoring to avoid or keep the adverse impacts on the site of cultural heritage to the minimum. A checklist including the affected sites of cultural heritage, impacts identified, recommended mitigation measures as well as the implementation agent and period shall also be included in the EIA report.

 

3.7.9       Hazard To Life

 

3.7.9.1    The risk to life due to marine transportation within HKSAR and the risk to life, including the workers of nearby plants, due to LNG Terminal operation, including jetty transfer, berthing navigation, tank farm storage and pipeline transfer of LNG, shall be assessed. The Applicant shall follow the criteria for evaluating hazard to life as stated in Annexes 4 and 22 of the TM in conducting hazard assessment and include the following in the assessment:

 

(i)      identification of all credible hazardous scenarios associated which may cause fatalities;

 

(ii)   execution of Quantitative Risk Assessment for expressing population risks in both individual and societal term;

 

(iii)   comparison of individual and societal risks with the Criteria for Evaluating Hazard to Life stipulated in Annex 4 of the TM;

 

(iv)       identification and assessment of practicable and cost effective risk mitigation measures as appropriate; and

 

(v)        identification of all LNG leakage scenarios and propose a safety management system for the operational phase of the project with an aim to contain any accidental leakage in short notice and to prevent and/or minimize any leakage.

 

3.7.9.2   For carrying out hazard assessment relating to marine transportation of the LNG, the Applicant shall assess the existing risk level at the Ma Wan Channel, among others, and identify practicable mitigation measures to avoid and eliminate the additional risk to the areas along the transportation route of the LNG carrier.

 

3.7.9.3  For carrying out the hazard assessment, the Applicant shall consider other potential contributors to the risk, this may include the Black Point Power Plant; the exisiting Castle Peak Power Station in Tap Shek Kok, the proposed Permanent Aviation Fuel Facility, the EcoPark, and other industrial developments in Tuen Mun Area 38, the operation of nearby helipad, including the helipad at Castle Peak, other existing, planned, and committed LPG, PHIs, or dangerous goods installation and operation in the vicinity.

 

3.7.9.4   All the fundamental assumptions that might affect the conclusion of the quantitative risk assessment shall be listed out and clearly presented.  The assumptions could be presented in a table form and should include all the planning assumptions, population figures, planned and committed developments, height of the fire plume, number of marine transits, type and size of tankers, vessel speed, and scenarios being considered. 

 

3.7.9.5   The assessment shall consider any potential risk issues associated with the LNG tankers routed through under the Tsing Ma Bridge

 

3.7.9.6  The approach and methodology to be used in the hazard assessment shall take into account relevant previous studies (including any international practices and studies), and to be agreed with the Director.

 

 

3.7.10     Land Contamination Impact

 

To prevent contamination problems arising from the future operation of the proposed LNG Terminal and associated facilities, in accordance with ProPECC Practice Note No. 3/94 “Contaminated Land Assessment and Remediation”, the Applicant shall:

(i)     identify the possible sources of contamination in the operational phase of the proposed LNG Terminal and associated facilities; and

(ii)    formulate appropriate operational practices, waste management strategies and precautionary measures to be implemented on site for prevention of contamination problems when it becomes operational.

 

3.7.11     Summary of Environmental Outcomes

 

               The EIA report shall contain a summary of the key environmental outcomes arising from the EIA study, including the population and environmentally sensitive areas protected, environmentally friendly designs recommended, key environmental problems avoided, compensation areas included and the environmental benefits of environmental protection measures recommended.

 

3.7.12    Summary of Environmental Performance Comparison

 

               The EIA report shall contain a summary table comparing the Environmental Performance of the Blackpoint Option and other possible Options.  The table shall compare the key design parameters (including size of reclamation; reclamation method, dredging volume, waste generation, pipeline details etc); the key sensitive receivers and the environmental impacts.

 

3.7.13     Environmental Monitoring and Audit (EM&A) Requirements

 

3.7.13.1  The Applicant shall identify and justify in the EIA study whether there is any need for EM&A activities during construction and operation phases of the Project and, if affirmative, to define the scope of EM&A requirements for the Project.

 

3.7.13.2  Subject to confirmation of EIA findings, the Applicant shall comply with requirements as stipulated in Annex 21 of the TM. The Applicant shall also propose real-time reporting of monitoring data for the Project through a dedicated internet website.

 

3.7.13.3  The Applicant shall prepare a project implementation schedule (in the form of a checklist as shown in Appendix E to this EIA study brief) containing the EIA study recommendations and mitigation measures with reference to the implementation programme.

 

4.            DURATION OF VALIDITY

 

4.1          This EIA study brief is valid for 36 months from the date of issue.  If the EIA study does not commence within this period, the Applicant shall apply to the Director for a fresh EIA study brief before commencement of the EIA study.

 

5.            REPORT REQUIREMENTS

 

5.1          In 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.

 

5.2          The Applicant shall supply the Director with the following number of copies of the EIA report and the executive summary:

 

(i)     50 copies of the EIA report in English and 80 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, addendum to the EIA report and the executive summary submitted in 5.2 (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.

 

5.3          The Applicant shall, upon request, make additional copies of above documents available to the public, subject to payment by the interested parties of full costs of printing.

 

5.4          In addition, to facilitate public inspection of the EIA report via the EIAO Internet Website, the Applicant shall provide electronic copies of both the EIA report and the executive summary prepared in HyperText Markup Language (HTML) (version 4.0 or later) and in Portable Document Format (PDF version 4.0 or later), unless otherwise agreed by the Director.  For the HTML version, a content page capable of providing hyperlink to each section and sub-section of the EIA report and the executive summary shall be included in the beginning of the document. Hyperlinks to all figures, drawings and tables in the EIA report and executive summary shall be provided in the main text from where the respective references are made.  All graphics in the report shall be in interlaced GIF format unless otherwise agreed by the Director.

 

5.5          The electronic copies of the EIA report and the executive summary shall be submitted to the Director at the time of application for approval of the EIA report. 

 

5.6          When the EIA report and the executive summary are made available for public inspection under s.7(1) of the EIAO, the content of the electronic copies of the EIA report and the executive summary must be the same as the hard copies and the Director shall be provided with the most updated electronic copies.

 

5.7          To promote environmentally friendly and efficient dissemination of information, both hardcopies and electronic copies of future EM&A reports recommended by the EIA study shall be required and their format shall be agreed by the Director.

 

5.8          To facilitate public involvement in the EIA process, the applicant shall produce 3-dimensional electronic visualisations of the major findings and elements of the EIA report, including baseline environmental information, the environmental situations with or without the project, key mitigated and unmitigated environmental impacts, and key recommended environmental mitigation measures so that the public can understand the project and the associated environmental issues. The visualisations shall be based on the EIA report and released to the public. The visualisations shall be submitted in CD-ROM or other suitable means agreed with the Director in commonly readable formats. Unless otherwise advised or agreed by the Director, the number of copies of CD-ROM required shall be the same as that for EIA reports under Section 5.2.

 

6.            OTHER PROCEDURAL REQUIREMENTS

 

6.1          If there is any change in the name of Applicant for this EIA study brief during the course of the EIA study, the Applicant must notify the Director immediately.

 

6.2          If there is any key change in the scope of the Project mentioned in Section 1.2 and 1.3 of this EIA study brief and in Project Profile (No. PP- 126/2005), the Applicant must seek confirmation from the Director in writing on whether or not the scope of issues covered by this EIA study brief can still cover the key changes, and the additional issues, if any, that the EIA study must also address.  If the changes to the Project fundamentally alter the key scope of the EIA study brief, the Applicant shall apply to the Director for a fresh EIA study brief.

 

 

 

--- END OF EIA STUDY BRIEF ---

 

June 2005

Environmental Assessment Division,

Environmental Protection Department

 

 

 

 

 

 




Appendix B-1

 

 

Guidelines on Choice of Models and Model Parameters

 

[The information contained in this Appendix is only meant to assist the Applicant in performing the air quality assessment.  The Applicant must exercise professional judgment in applying this general information for the Project.]

 

 

1.           Introduction

 

1.1       To expedite the review process by the Authority and to assist project proponents or environmental consultants with the conduct of air quality modelling exercise which are frequently called for as part of environmental impact assessment studies, this paper describes the usage and requirements of a few commonly used air quality models.

 

2.             Choice of Models

 

2.1           The models which have been most commonly used in air quality impact assessments, due partly to their ease of use and partly to the quick turn-around time for results, are of Gaussian type and designed for use in simple terrain under uniform wind flow. There are circumstances when these models are not suitable for ambient concentration estimates and other types of models such as physical, numerical or mesoscale models will have to be used. In situations where topographic, terrain or obstruction effects are minimal between source and receptor, the following Gaussian models can be used to estimate the near-field impacts of a number of source types including dust, traffic and industrial emissions.

 

                Model                  Applications

                                                       

                FDM                       for evaluating fugitive and open dust source impacts (point, line and area sources)

                CALINE4               for evaluating mobile traffic emission impacts (line sources)

ISCST3                    for evaluating industrial chimney releases as well as area and volumetric sources (point, area and volume sources); line sources can be approximated by a number of volume sources.

 

                These frequently used models are also referred to as Schedule 1 models (see attached list).

 

2.2          Note that both FDM and CALINE4 have a height limit on elevated sources (20 m and 10m, respectively). Source of elevation above these limits will have to be modelled using the ISCST3 model or suitable alternative models. In using the latter, reference should be made to the 'Guidelines on the Use of Alternative Computer Models in Air Quality Assessment' in Appendix B-3.

 

2.3        The models can be used to estimate both short-term (hourly and daily average) and long-term (annual average) ambient concentrations of air pollutants. The model results, obtained using appropriate model parameters (refer to Section 3) and assumptions, allow direct comparison with the relevant air quality standards such as the Air Quality Objectives (AQOs) for the relevant pollutant and time averaging period.

 

3.             Model Input Requirements

 

3.1           Meteorological Data

 

3.1.1        At least 1 year of recent meteorological data (including wind speed, wind direction, stability class, ambient temperature and mixing height) from a weather station either closest to or having similar characteristics as the study site should be used to determine the highest short-term (hourly, daily) and long-term (annual) impacts at identified air sensitive receivers in that period. The amount of valid data for the period should be no less than 90 percent.

 

3.1.2        Alternatively, the meteorological conditions as listed below can be used to examine the worst case short-term impacts:

 

Day time:          stability class D; wind speed 1 m/s (at 10m height); worst-case wind angle; mixing height 500 m

 

Night time:       stability class F; wind speed 1 m/s (at 10m height); worst case wind angle; mixing height 500 m

               

                This is a common practice with using the CALINE4 model due to its inability to handle lengthy data set.

 

3.1.3        For situations where, for example, (i) the model (such as CALINE4) does not allow easy handling of one full year of meteorological data; or (ii) model run time is a concern, the followings can be adopted in order to determine the daily and annual average impacts:

 

(i)         perform a frequency occurrence analysis of one year of meteorological data to determine the actual wind speed (to the nearest unit of m/s), wind direction (to the nearest 10o) and stability (classes A to F) combinations and their frequency of occurrence;

(ii)       determine the short term hourly impact under all of the identified wind speed, wind direction and stability combinations; and

(iii)      apply the frequency data with the short term results to determine the long term (daily / annual) impacts.

 

Apart from the above, any alternative approach that will capture the worst possible impact values (both short term and long term) may also be considered.

 

3.1.4        Note that the anemometer height (relative to a datum same for the sources and receptors) at which wind speed measurements were taken at a selected station should be correctly entered in the model. These measuring positions can vary greatly from station to station and the vertical wind profile employed in the model can be grossly distorted from the real case if incorrect anemometer height is used. This will lead to unreliable concentration estimates.

 

3.1.5        An additional parameter, namely, the standard deviation of wind direction,  σΘ, needs to be provided as input to the CALINE4 model. Typical values ofσΘ range from 12o for rural areas to 24o for highly urbanised areas under 'D' class stability. For semi-rural such as new development areas, 18o is more appropriate under the same stability condition. The following reference can be consulted for typical ranges of standard deviation of wind direction under different stability categories and surface roughness conditions.

 

Ref.(1): Guideline On Air Quality Models (Revised), EPA-450/2-78-027R, United States Environmental Protection Agency, July 1986.

 

3.2           Emission Sources

 

                All the identified sources relevant to a process plant or a study site should be entered in the model and the emission estimated based on emission factors compiled in the AP-42 (Ref. 2) or other suitable references. The relevant sections of AP-42 and any parameters or assumptions used in deriving the emission rates (in units g/s, g/s/m or g/s/m2) as required by the model should be clearly stated for verification. The physical dimensions, location, release height and any other emission characteristics such as efflux conditions and emission pattern of the sources input to the model should also correspond to site data.

 

                If the emission of a source varies with wind speed, the wind speed-dependent factor should be entered.

 

Ref.(2): Compilation of Air Pollutant Emission Factors, AP-42, 5th Edition, United States Environmental Protection Agency, January 1995.

 

3.3           Urban/Rural Classification

 

                Emission sources may be located in a variety of settings. For modelling purposes these are classed as either rural or urban so as to reflect the enhanced mixing that occurs over urban areas due to the presence of buildings and urban heat effects. The selection of either rural or urban dispersion coefficients in a specific application should follow a land use classification procedure. If the land use types including industrial, commercial and residential uses account for 50% or more of an area within 3 km radius from the source, the site is classified as urban; otherwise, it is classed as rural.

 

3.4           Surface Roughness Height

 

                This parameter is closely related to the land use characteristics of a study area and associated with the roughness element height. As a first approximation, the surface roughness can be estimated as 3 to 10 percent of the average height of physical structures. Typical values used for urban and new development areas are 370 cm and 100 cm, respectively.

 

 

3.5           Receptors

 

                These include discrete receptors representing all the identified air sensitive receivers at their appropriate locations and elevations and any other discrete or grid receptors for supplementary information. A receptor grid, whether Cartesian or Polar, may be used to generate results for contour outputs.

 

3.6           Particle Size Classes

 

                In evaluating the impacts of dust-emitting activities, suitable dust size categories relevant to the dust sources concerned with reasonable breakdown in TSP (< 30 μm) and RSP (< 10 μm) compositions should be used.

 

3.7           NO2 to NOx Ratio

 

                The conversion of NOx to NO2 is a result of a series of complex photochemical reactions and has implications on the prediction of near field impacts of traffic emissions. Until further data are available, three approaches are currently acceptable in the determination of NO2:

 

(a)              Ambient Ratio Method (ARM) - assuming 20% of NOx to be NO2; or

(b)              Discrete Parcel Method (DPM, available in the CALINE4 model); or

(c)              Ozone Limiting Method (OLM) - assuming the tailpipe NO2 emission to be 7.5% of NOx and the background ozone concentration to be in the range of 57 to 68 μg/m3 depending on the land use type (see also the EPD reference paper 'Guidelines on Assessing the 'TOTAL' Air Quality Impacts' in Appendix B-2).

 

3.8           Odour Impact

 

                In assessing odour impacts, a much shorter time-averaging period of 5 seconds is required due to the shorter exposure period tolerable by human receptors. Conversion of model computed hourly average results to 5-second values is therefore necessary to enable comparison against recommended standard. The hourly concentration is first converted to 3-minute average value according to a power law relationship which is stability dependent (Ref. 3) and a result of the statistical nature of atmospheric turbulence. Another conversion factor (10 for unstable conditions and 5 for neutral to stable conditions) is then applied to convert the 3-minute average to 5-second average (Ref. 4). In summary, to convert the hourly results to 5-second averages, the following factors can be applied:

 

                                Stability Category                                1-hour to 5-sec Conversion Factor

A & B                                                                          45

C                                                                                   27

D                                                                                   9

E & F                                                                            8

 

Under ‘D’ class stability, the 5-second concentration is approximately 10 times the hourly average result. Note, however, that the combined use of such conversion factors together with the ISCST results may not be suitable for assessing the extreme close-up impacts of odour sources.

 

Ref.(3): Richard A. Duffee, Martha A. O’Brien and Ned Ostojic, ‘Odor Modeling – Why and How’, Recent Developments and Current Practices in Odor Regulations, Controls and Technology, Air & Waste Management Association, 1991.

 

Ref.(4): A.W.C. Keddie, ‘Dispersion of Odours’, Odour Control – A Concise Guide, Warren Spring Laboratory, 1980.

 

3.9           Plume Rise Options

 

                The ISCST3 model provides by default a list of the U.S. regulatory options for concentration calculations. These are all applicable to the Hong Kong situations except for the 'Final Plume Rise' option. As the distance between sources and receptors are generally fairly close, the non-regulatory option of  'Gradual Plume Rise' should be used instead to give more accurate estimate of near-field impacts due to plume emission. However, the 'Final Plume Rise' option may still be used for assessing the impacts of distant sources.

 

3.10         Portal Emissions

 

                These include traffic emissions from tunnel portals and any other similar openings and are generally modelled as volume sources according to the PIARC 91 (or more up-to-date version) recommendations (Ref. 5, section III.2). For emissions arising from underpasses or any horizontal openings of the like, these are treated as area or point sources depending on the source physical dimensions. In all these situations, the ISCST3 model or more sophisticated models will have to be used instead of the CALINE4 model. In the case of portal emissions with significant horizontal exit velocity which cannot be handled by the ISCST3 model, the impacts may be estimated by the TOP model (Ref. 6) or any other suitable models subject to prior agreement with EPD.  The EPD’s 'Guidelines on the Use of Alternative Computer Models in Air Quality Assessment' should also be referred to in Appendix B-3.

 

Ref.(5): XIXth World Road Congress Report, Permanent International Association of Road Congresses (PIARC), 1991.

 

Ref.(6): N. Ukegunchi, H. Okamoto and Y. Ide "Prediction of vehicular emission pollution around a tunnel mouth", Proceedings 4th International Clean Air Congress, pp. 205-207, Tokyo, 1977.

 

3.11         Background Concentrations

 

                Background concentrations are required to account for far-field sources which cannot be estimated by the model. These values, to be used in conjunction with model results for assessing the total impacts, should be based on long term average of monitoring data at location representative of the study site. Please make reference to the paper 'Guidelines on Assessing the 'TOTAL' Air Quality Impacts' in Appendix B-2 for further information.

 

3.12         Output

 

                The highest short-term and long-term averages of pollutant concentrations at prescribed receptor locations are output by the model and to be compared against the relevant air quality standards specified for the relevant pollutant. Contours of pollutant concentration are also required for indicating the general impacts of emissions over a study area.

 

                Copies of model files in electronic format should also be provided for EPD's reference.


 

 

 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

 

 

Schedule 1

 

Air Quality Models Generally Accepted by

Hong Kong Environmental Protection Department for

Regulatory Applications as at 1 July 1998*

 

Industrial Source Complex Dispersion Model - Short Term Version 3 (ISCST3) or the latest version developed by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

 

California Line Source Dispersion Model Version 4 (CALINE4) or the latest version developed by Department of Transportation, State of California, U.S.A.

 

Fugitive Dust Model (FDM) or the latest version developed by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

 

 

 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

 

 

 

*          EPD is continually reviewing the latest development in air quality models and will update this Schedule accordingly.


 

 

Appendix B-2

 

Guidelines on Assessing the 'TOTAL' Air Quality Impacts

 

[The information contained in this Appendix is only meant to assist the Applicant in performing the air quality assessment.  The Applicant must exercise professional judgment in applying this general information for the Project.]

 

1.             Total Impacts - 3 Major Contributions

 

1.1                In evaluating the air quality impacts of a proposed project upon air sensitive receivers, contributions from three classes of emission sources depending on their distance from the site should be considered. These are:

 

Primary contributions:                         project induced

Secondary contributions:                   pollutant-emitting activities in the immediate neighbourhood

Other contributions:                            pollution not accounted for by the previous two

(Background contributions)

 

2.             Nature of Emissions

 

2.1           Primary contributions

 

                In most cases, the project-induced emissions are fairly well defined and quite often (but not necessarily) the major contributor to local air quality impacts. Examples include those due to traffic network, building or road construction projects.

 

2.2           Secondary contributions

 

                Within the immediate neighbourhood of the project site, there are usually pollutant emitting activities contributing further to local air quality impacts. For most local scale projects, any emission sources in an area within 500m radius of the project site with notable impacts should be identified and included in an air quality assessment to cover the short-range contributions. In the exceptional cases where there is one or more significant sources nearby, the study area may have to be extended or alternative estimation approach employed to ensure these impacts are reasonably accounted for.

 

2.3           Background contributions

 

                The above two types of emission contributions should account for, to a great extent, the air quality impacts upon local air sensitive receivers, which are often amenable to estimation by the 'Gaussian Dispersion' type of models. However, a background air quality level should be prescribed to indicate the baseline air quality in the region of the project site, which would account for any pollution not covered by the two preceding contributions. The emission sources contributing to the background air quality would be located further afield and not easy to identify. In addition, the transport mechanism by which pollutants are carried over long distances (ranging from 1km up to tens or hundreds of kms) is rather complex and cannot be adequately estimated by the 'Gaussian' type of models.

 

3.             Background Air Quality - Estimation Approach

 

3.1           The approach

 

               In view of the difficulties in estimating background air quality using the air quality models currently available, an alternative approach based on monitored data is suggested. The essence of this approach is to adopt the long-term (5-year) averages of the most recent monitored air quality data obtained by EPD. These background data would be reviewed yearly or biennially depending on the availability of the monitored data. The approach is a first attempt to provide a reasonable estimate of the background air quality level for use in conjunction with EIA air quality assessment to address the cumulative impacts upon a locality. This approach may be replaced or supplemented by superior modelling efforts such as that entailed in PATH (Pollutants in the Atmosphere and their Transport over Hong Kong), a comprehensive territory-wide air quality modelling system currently being developed for Hong Kong. Notwithstanding this, the present approach is based on measured data and their long term regional averages; the background values so derived should therefore be indicative of the present background air quality. In the absence of any other meaningful way to estimate a background air quality for the future, this present background estimate should also be applied to future projects as a first attempt at a comprehensive estimate until a better approach is formulated.

 

3.2           Categorisation

 

                The monitored air quality data, by 'district-averaging' are further divided into three categories, viz, Urban, Industrial and Rural/New Development. The background pollutant concentrations to be adopted for a project site would depend on the geographical constituency to which the site belongs. The categorisation of these constituencies is given in Section 3.4. The monitoring stations suggested for the 'district-averaging'(arithmetic means) to derive averages for the three background air quality categories are listed as follows:

 

Urban:                                                Kwun Tong, Sham Shui Po, Tsim Sha Tsui and Central/Western

Industrial:                                          Kwun Tong, Tsuen Wan and Kwai Chung

Rural/New Development:                Sha Tin, Tai Po, Junk Bay, Hong Kong South and Yuen Long

 

                The averaging would make use of data from the above stations wherever available. The majority of the monitoring stations are located some 20m above ground.

 

3.3           Background pollutant values

 

                Based on the above approach, background values for the 3 categories have been obtained for a few major air pollutants as follows:

 

POLLUTANT

URBAN

INDUSTRIAL

RURAL / NEW DEVELOPMENT

NO2

59

57

39

SO2

21

26

13

O3

62

68

57

TSP

98

96

87

RSP

60

58

51

 

                All units are in micrograms per cubic metre. The above values are derived from 1992 to 1996 annual averages with the exception of ozone which represent annual average of daily hourly maximum values for year 1996.

 

                In cases where suitable air quality monitoring data representative of the study site such as those obtained from a nearby monitoring station or on-site sampling are not available for the prescription of background air pollution levels, the above tabulated values can be adopted instead.  Strictly speaking, the suggested values are only appropriate for long term assessment. However, as an interim measure and until a better approach is formulated, the same values can also be used for short term assessment. This implies that the short term background values will be somewhat under-estimated, which compensates for the fact that some of the monitoring data are inherently influenced by secondary sources because of the monitoring station location.

 

                Indeed, if good quality on-site sampling data which cover at least one year period are available, these can be used to derive both the long term (annual) and short term (daily / hourly) background values, the latter are usually applied on an hour to hour, day to day basis.

 

3.4           Site categories

 

                The categories to which the 19 geographical constituencies belong are listed as follows:

 

DISTRICT

AIR QUALITY CATEGORY

Islands

Rural / New Development

Southern

Rural / New Development

Eastern

Urban

Wan Chai

Urban

Central & Western

Urban

Sai Kung

Rural / New Development

Kwun Tong

Industrial

Wong Tai Sin

Urban

Kowloon City

Urban

Yau Tsim

Urban

Mong Kok

Urban

Sham Shui Po

Urban

Kwai Tsing

Industrial

Sha Tin

Rural / New Development

Tsuen Wan

Industrial

Tuen Mun

Rural / New Development

Tai Po

Rural / New Development

Yuen Long

Rural / New Development

Northern

Rural / New Development

 

 

3.5           Provisions for 'double-counting’

 

                The current approach is, by no means, a rigorous treatment of background air quality but aims to provide an as-realistic-as-possible approximation based on limited field data. 'Double-counting' of 'secondary contributions' may be apparent through the use of such 'monitoring-based' background data as some of the monitoring stations are of close proximity to existing emission sources. 'Primary contributions' due to a proposed project (which is yet to be realized) will not be double-counted by such an approach. In order to avoid over-estimation of background pollutant concentrations, an adjustment to the values given in Section 3.3 is possible and optional by multiplying the following factor:

 

                 (1.0 - ESecondary contributions/ETerritory)

 

                where E stands for emission.

 

                The significance of this factor is to eliminate the fractional contribution to background pollutant level of emissions due to 'secondary contributions' out of those from the entire territory. In most cases, this fractional contribution to background pollutant levels by the secondary contributions is minimal.

 

4.             Conclusions

 

                The above described approach to estimating the total air quality impacts of a proposed project, in particular the background pollutant concentrations for air quality assessment, should be adopted with immediate effect. Use of short term monitoring data to prescribe the background concentrations is no longer acceptable.


 

Appendix B-3

 

 

Guidelines on the Use of Alternative Computer Models

in Air Quality Assessment

 

 

[The information contained in this Appendix is only meant to assist the Applicant in performing the air quality assessment.  The Applicant must exercise professional judgment in applying this general information for the Project.]

 

1.                 Background

 

1.1           In Hong Kong, a number of Gaussian plume models are commonly employed in regulatory applications such as application for specified process licences and environmental impact assessments (EIAs). These frequently used models (as listed in Schedule 1 attached; hereafter referred to as Schedule 1 models) have no regulatory status but form the basic set of tools for local-scale air quality assessment in Hong Kong.

 

1.2          However, no single model is sufficient to cover all situations encountered in regulatory applications. In order to ensure that the best model available is used for each regulatory application and that a model is not arbitrarily applied, the project proponent (and/or its environmental consultants) should assess the capabilities of various models available and adopt one that is most suitable for the project concerned.

 

1.3        Examples of situations where the use of an alternative model is warranted include:

 

(i)               the complexity of the situation to be modelled far exceeds the capability of the Schedule 1 models; and

(ii)         the performance of an alternative model is comparable or better than the Schedule 1 models.

 

1.4               This paper outlines the demonstration / submission required in order to support the use of an alternative air quality model for regulatory applications for Hong Kong.

 

2.             Required Demonstration / Submission

 

2.1               Any model that is proposed for air quality applications and not listed amongst the Schedule 1 models will be considered by EPD on a case-by-case basis.  In such cases, the proponent will have to provide the followings for EPD's review:

 

(i)             Technical details of the proposed model; and

(ii)           Performance evaluation of the proposed model

 

                    Based on the above information, EPD will determine the acceptability of the proposed model for a specific or general applications. The onus of providing adequate supporting materials rests entirely with the proponent.

 

2.2               To provide technical details of the proposed model, the proponent should submit documents containing at least the following information:

 

(i)          mathematical formulation and data requirements of the model;

(ii)        any previous performance evaluation of the model; and

(iii)       a complete set of model input and output file(s) in commonly used electronic format.

 

2.3.1                  On performance evaluation, the required approach and extent of demonstration varies depending on whether a Schedule 1 model is already available and suitable in simulating the situation under consideration. In cases where no Schedule 1 model is found applicable, the proponent must demonstrate that the proposed model passes the screening test as set out in USEPA Document "Protocol for Determining the Best Performing Model" (Ref. 1).

 

 

Ref.(1): William M. Cox, ‘Protocol for Determining the Best Performing Model’; Publication No. EPA-454/R-92-025; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC.

 

2.3.2                  For cases where a Schedule 1 model is applicable to the project under consideration but an alternative model is proposed for use instead, the proponent must demonstrate either that

 

(i)        the highest and second highest concentrations predicted by the proposed model are within 2 percent of the estimates obtained from an applicable Schedule 1 model (with appropriate options chosen) for all receptors for the project under consideration; or

 

(ii)       the proposed model has superior performance against an applicable Schedule 1 model based on the evaluation procedure set out in USEPA Document  "Protocol for Determining the Best Performing Model" (Ref. 1).

 

2.3.3                  Should EPD find the information on technical details alone sufficient to indicate the acceptability of the proposed model, information on further performance evaluation as specified in Sections 2.3 and 2.4 above would not be necessary.

 

2.3.4                  If the proposed model is an older version of one of the Schedule 1 models or was previously included in Schedule 1, the technical documents mentioned in Section 2.2 are normally not required.  However, a performance demonstration of equivalence as stated in Section 2.4 (i) would become necessary.

 

2.3.5                  If EPD is already in possession of some of the documents that describe the technical details of the proposed model, submission of the same by the proponent is not necessary. The proponent may check with EPD to avoid sending in duplicate information.

 

 


 

 

 

 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

 

Schedule 1

Air Quality Models Generally Accepted by

Hong Kong Environmental Protection Department for

Regulatory Applications as at 1 July 1998*

 

 

Industrial Source Complex Dispersion Model - Short Term Version 3 (ISCST3) or the latest version developed by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

 

California Line Source Dispersion Model Version 4 (CALINE4) or the latest version developed by Department of Transportation, State of California, U.S.A.

 

Fugitive Dust Model (FDM) or the latest version developed by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

 

 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

 

 

 

 

*          EPD is continually reviewing the latest development in air quality models and will update this Schedule accordingly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Appendix C

 

Water Quality Modelling Requirements

(Project Title : Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Receiving Terminal and Associated Facilities)

 

 

Modelling software general

 

1.         The modelling software shall be fully 3-dimensional capable of accurately simulating the stratified condition, salinity transport, and effects of wind and tide on the water body within the model area.

           

2.        The modelling software shall consist of hydrodynamic, water quality, sediment transport, thermal and particle dispersion modules.  The hydrodynamic, water quality, sediment transport and thermal modules shall have been proven with successful applications locally and overseas.

           

3.        The hydrodynamic, water quality, sediment transport and thermal modules shall be strictly mass conserved at all levels.

 

4.        The assessment and modelling tool for spill events should be quantitative with proven applications locally or overseas.

 

5.        An initial dilution model shall be used to characterize the initial mixing of the effluent discharge, and to feed the terminal level and size of the plume into the far field water quality modules where necessary.  The initial dilution model shall have been proven with successful applications locally and overseas.

           

 

Model details – Calibration & Validation

 

1.        No field data collection is required for model calibration for this study.  However, the models shall be properly calibrated and validated before its use in this study in the Hong Kong waters, the Pearl Estuary and the Dangan (Lema) Channel, with the field data collected by:

           

·    Hydraulic and Water Quality Studies in Victoria Harbour (1987)

·  Port and Airport Development Strategy - Enhancement of WAHMO       Mathematical Models (1990)

·  Strategic Sewage Disposal Scheme Stage II - Oceanic Outfall, Oceanographic Surveys and Modelling (1992)

·  Update on Cumulative Water Quality and Hydrological Effect of Coastal Developments and Upgrading of Assessment Tool (1998)

·    Environmental Protection Department (EPD)’s routine monitoring data

·    Tidal data from Hong Kong Observatory, Macau and relevant Mainland Authorities

 

2.         Tidal data shall be calibrated and validated in both frequency and time domain manner.

           

3.         For the purpose of calibration and validation, the model shall run for not less than 15 days of real sequence of tide (excluding model spin up) in both dry and wet seasons with due consideration of the time required to establish initial conditions. 

          

4.        In general the hydrodynamic models shall be calibrated to the following criteria:

           

                        Criteria                                                             Level of fitness

                        with field data

·  tidal elevation (rms)                                                                   < 8 %

·  maximum phase error at high water and low water                     < 20 minutes

·  maximum current speed deviation                                              < 30 %

·  maximum phase error at peak speed                                         < 20 minutes

·  maximum direction error at peak speed                         < 15 degrees

·  maximum salinity deviation                                                        < 2.5 ppt

 

Model details – Simulation

 

1.         The water quality modelling results shall be qualitatively explainable, and any identifiable trend and variations in water quality shall be reproduced by the model.  The water quality model shall be able to simulate and take account of the interaction of dissolved oxygen, phytoplankton, organic and inorganic nitrogen, phosphorus, silicate, BOD, temperature, suspended solids, contaminants release of dredged and disposed material, air-water exchange, E. coli and benthic processes.  It shall also simulate salinity.  Salinity results simulated by hydrodynamic models and water quality models shall be demonstrated to be consistent.

 

2.         The sediment transport module for assessing impacts of sediment loss due to marine works shall include the processes of settling, deposition and re-erosion.  The values of the modelling parameters shall be agreed with EPD.  Contaminants release and DO depletion during dredging and dumping shall be simulated by the model.

 

3.         The thermal model shall be based on the flow field produced by the hydrodynamic model.  It shall incorporate the physical processes of thermal / cooled water discharge and abstraction flow, buoyancy effect of the thermal plume, and surface heat exchange.  Dispersion of biocides in the discharge shall also be simulated with appropriate decay rates.  Initial dilution model shall be used to quantify the initial mixing of the thermal / cooled water discharge.  

 

4.         The models shall at least cover the Hong Kong waters, the Pearl Estuary and the Dangan Channel to incorporate all major influences on hydrodynamic and water quality.  The coverage of the proposed model shall be properly designed such that it is remote enough so that the boundary conditions would not be affected by the waterway and the proposed disposal ground.  The model coverage area shall be agreed with EPD. 

 

5.         In general, grid size at the area affected by the project shall be less than 400 m in open waters and less than 75 m around sensitive receivers.  The grid schematization shall be agreed with EPD.

 

 


Modelling assessment

 

1.         The assessment shall include the construction and operation phases of the project.  Where appropriate, the assessment shall also include maintenance dredging.  Scenarios to be assessed shall cover the baseline condition and scenarios with various different options proposed by the Applicant in order to quantify the environmental impacts and improvements that will be brought about by these options.  Corresponding pollution load, bathymetry and coastline shall be adopted in the model set up. 

 

2.         Hydrodynamic, water quality, sediment transport and thermal modules, where appropriate, shall be run for (with proper model spin up) at least a real sequence of 15 days spring-neap tidal cycle in both the dry season and the wet season.

 

3.         The assessment shall cover accidental spillage of both LNG & fuel of the carriers.  Potential locations, quantities and rates of spill shall be identified and quantified.  The spill modelling shall cover combinations of different tides, wind and season conditions.  The methodology for modelling spill and scenarios to be covered should be agreed with EPD. 

 

4.         The results shall be assessed for compliance of Water Quality Objectives. Any changes in hydrodynamic regime shall be assessed.  Daily erosion / sedimentation rate shall be computed and its ecological impact shall be assessed.

 

5.         The impact on all sensitive receivers shall be assessed. 

 

6.         Cumulative impacts due to other projects, activities or pollution sources within a boundary to the agreement of EPD shall also be predicted and quantified.

 

7.         All modelling input data and results shall be submitted in digital media to EPD.

 


Appendix D

 

Criteria for Cultural Heritage Impact Assessment

 

 

(1)         Baseline Study

 

1.1         A baseline study shall be conducted :

 

            (a)       To compile a comprehensive inventory of archaeological sites (including marine archaeological sites), historic buildings and structures within the proposed project area, which include :

 

                       (i)          All sites of archaeological interest (including marine archaeological sites);

                       (ii)         All pre-1950 buildings and structures;

                       (iii)        Selected post-1950 buildings and structures of high architectural and historical significance and interest; and

                       (iv)        Landscape features include sites of historical events or providing a significant historical record or a setting for buildings or monuments of architectural or archaeological importance, historic field patterns, tracks and fish ponds and cultural element such as fung shui woodlands and clan graves.

 

            (b)        To identify the direct and indirect impacts on the site of cultural heritage at the planning stage in order to avoid causing any negative effects.  The impacts include the direct loss, destruction or disturbance of an element of cultural heritage, impact in its settings causing impinge on its character through inappropriate sitting or design, potential damage to the physical fabric of archaeological remains, historic buildings or historic landscapes through air pollution, change of water-table, vibration, recreation pressure and ecological damage by the development.  The impacts listed are merely to illustrate the range of potential impacts and not intended to be exhaustive.

 

1.2        The baseline study shall also include a desk-top study and a field survey.

 

1.3        Desk-top Research

 

            1.3.1   Desk-top searches should be conducted to analyse, collect and collate extant information.  They include :

 

                    (a)       Search of the list of declared monuments protected by the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Chapter 53).

 

                                (b)            Search of the list of deemed monuments through the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO) of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department.

 

                                (c)            Search of the list of sites of cultural heritage identified by the AMO.

 

                                (d)            Search of publications on local historical, architectural, anthropological, archaeological and other cultural studies, such as, Journals of the Royal Asiatic Society (Hong Kong Branch), Journals of the Hong Kong Archaeological society, Antiquities and Monuments Office Monograph Series and so forth.

 

                                (e)            Search of other unpublished papers, records, archival and historical documents through public libraries, archives, and the tertiary institutions, such as the Hong Kong Collection and libraries of the Department of Architecture of the University of Hong Kong and the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Public Records Office, photographic library of the Information Services Department and so forth.

 

                                (f) Search of any other unpublished archaeological investigation and excavation reports kept by the AMO.

 

                                (g)            Search of historical documents in the Public Records Office, the Land Registry, District Lands Office, District Office and the Hong Kong Museum of History and so forth.

 

                                (h)            Search of cartographic and pictorial documents.  Maps of the recent past searched in the Maps and Aerial Photo Library of the Lands Department.

 

                                (i) Study of existing Geotechnical information (for archaeological desk-top research).

 

                                (j) Discussion with local informants.

 

1.4         Field Evaluation

 

            1.4.1    The potential value of the development site with regard to the cultural heritage could be established easily where the site is well-documented.  However, it does not mean that the site is devoid of interest if it lacks information.  In these instances, a site visit combined with discussions with appropriate individuals or organisations should be conducted by those with expertise in the area of cultural heritage to clarify the position.

 

            1.4.2    Historic buildings and structures survey

 

                         (a)       Field scan of all the historic buildings and structures within the project area.

 

                         (b)       Photographic recording of each historic building or structure including the exterior (the elevations of all faces of the building premises, the roof, close up for the special architectural details) and the interior (special architectural details), if possible, as well as the surroundings of each historic building or structure.

 

                         (c)       Interview with local elders and other informants on the local historical, architectural, anthropological and other cultural information related to the historic buildings and structures.

 

                         (d)       Architectural appraisal of the historic buildings and structures.

 

            1.4.3    Archaeological Survey

 

                        A detailed archaeological field evaluation programme should be designed to assess the archaeological potential of the project area. The programme should clearly elaborate the strategy and methodology adopted, including what particular question(s) can be resolved, how the archaeological data will be collected and recorded, how the evidence will be analysed and interpreted and how the archaeological finds and results will be organized and made available.  Effective field techniques should also be demonstrated in the programme such as the following (but not limited to):

 

                         (a)       Definition of areas of natural land undisturbed in the recent past.

 

                         (b)       Field scan of the natural land undisturbed in the recent past in detail with special attention paid to areas of exposed soil which were searched for artifacts.

 

                         (c)       Conduct systematic auger survey/shovel testing at 20m interval to establish the horizontal spread of cultural materials deposits.

 

                         (d)       Excavation of test pits to establish the vertical sequence of cultural materials.  The hand digging of 1 x 1m or 1.5 x 1.5m test pits to determine the presence or absence of deeper archaeological deposits and their cultural history.

 

            1.4.4    If the field evaluation identifies any additional sites of cultural heritage within the study area which are of potential historic or archaeological importance and not recorded by AMO, the office should be reported as soon as possible.  The historic and archaeological value of the items will be further assessed by the AMO.

 

1.5       The Report of Baseline Study

 

            1.5.1    The study report should have concrete evidence to show that the process of the above desk-top and field survey has been satisfactorily completed.  This should take the form of a detailed inventory of the sites of cultural heritage supported by full description of their cultural significance.  The description should contain detailed geographical, historical, archaeological, architectural, anthropological, ethnographic and other cultural data supplemented with illustrations below the photographic and cartographic records.

 

            1.5.2    Historic Buildings and Structures

 

                         (a)      A map in 1:1000 scale showing the boundary of each historic building or structure.

 

                         (b)      Photographic records of each historic building or structure.

 

                         (c)       Detailed record of each historic building or structure including its construction year, previous and present uses, architectural characteristics, as well as legends, historic persons and events, and cultural activities associated with the structure.

 

            1.5.3    Archaeological Sites

 

                         (a)       A map showing the boundary of each archaeological site as supported and delineated by field walking, auguring and test-pitting;

 

                         (b)       Drawing of stratigraphic section of test-pits excavated which shows the cultural sequence of a site.

 

            1.5.4    A full bibliography and the source of information consulted should be provided to assist the evaluation of the quality of the evidence.  It is expected that the study and result are up to an internationally accepted academic and professional standard.

 

(2)        Impact Assessment

 

2.1         Culture heritage impact assessment must be undertaken to identify the impacts of the sites of cultural heritage which will be affected by the proposed development subject to the result of desktop research and field evaluation.  The prediction of impacts and an evaluation of their significance must be undertaken by an expert in cultural heritage.  During the assessment, both the direct impacts such as loss or damage of important features as well as indirect impacts such as change of water table levels which may affect the preservation of the archaeological and built heritage in situ should be stated.  A detailed description and plans should be provided to elaborate to what extent the site of cultural heritage will be affected.

 

2.2         Preservation in totality must be taken as the first priority.  Please refer to paragraph 4.3.1(c), item 2 of Annex 10, items 2.6 to 2.9 of Annex 19 and other relevant parts of the Technical Memorandum on Environmental Impact Assessment Process for the detailed requirements of the impact assessment.

 

(3)         Mitigation Measures

 

3.1         It is always a good practice to recognise the site or monument early in the planning stage and site selection process, and to avoid it, i.e. preserve it in-situ, or leaving a buffer zone around the site.  Built heritage, sites and landscapes are to be in favour of preservation unless it can be shown that there is a need for a particular development which is of paramount importance and outweighs the significance of the heritage feature.

 

3.2         If avoidance of the cultural heritage is not possible, amelioration can be achieved by reduction of the potential impacts and the preservation of heritage features, such as physically relocating it.  Measures like amendments of the sitting, screening and revision of the detailed design of the development are required to lessen its degree of exposure if it causes visual intrusion to the cultural heritage and affecting its character.

 

3.3         All the assessments should be conducted by an expert in cultural heritage and further evaluated and endorsed by the Antiquities and Monuments Office and the Antiquities Advisory Board.

 

3.4         Besides referring to paragraph 4.3.1(d), items 2.10 to 2.14 of Annex 19 and other relevant parts of the Technical Memorandum, proposals for mitigation measures should be accompanied with a master layout plan together with all detailed treatment, elevations, and landscape plan.  A rescue programme, when required, may involve preservation of the historic building or structure together with the relics inside, and its historic environment through relocation, detailed cartographic and photographic survey or preservation of an archaeological site “by record”, i.e. through excavation to extract the maximum data as the very last resort.

 

3.5         The programme for implementation of agreed mitigation measures should be able to be implemented.  It is to be clearly stated in the EIA report, as required in Annex 20 of the Technical Memorandum.  In particular, item 6.7 of Annex 20 requires to define and list out clearly the proposed mitigation measures to be implemented, by whom, when, where, to what requirements and the various implementation responsibilities.  A comprehensive plan and programme for the protection and conservation of the partially preserved Site of Cultural Heritage, if any, during the planning and design stage of the proposed project must be detailed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Annex to Appendix D

 

Guidelines for Marine Archaeological Investigation (MAI)

 

The standard practice for MAI should consist of four separate tasks, i.e. (1) Baseline Review, (2) Geophysical Survey, (3) Establishing Archaeological Potential and (4) Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV)/Visual Diver Survey/Watching Brief.

 

(1)      Baseline Review

 

1.1     A baseline review should be conducted to collate the existing information in order to identify the potential for archaeological resources and, if identified, their likely character, extent, quality and value.

 

1.2     The baseline review will focus on known sources of archive data.  It will include:

 

a.           Geotechnical Engineering Office (GEO) – the Department holds extensive seabed survey data collected from previous geological research.

 

b.          Marine Department, Hydrographic Office – the Department holds a substantial archive of hydrographic data and charts.

 

c.           The Royal Naval Hydrographic Department in the UK – the Department maintains an archive of all survey data collected by naval hydrographers.

 

1.3     The above data sources will provide historical records and more detailed geological analysis of submarine features which may have been subsequently masked by more recent sediment deposits and accumulated debris.

 

(2)      Geophysical Survey

 

2.1     Extensive geophysical survey of the study area should be deployed by using high resolution boomer, side scan sonar and an echo sounder.  The data received from the survey would be analysed in detail to provide:

 

a.           Exact definition of the areas of greatest archaeological potential.

 

b.          Assessment of the depth and nature of the seabed sediments to define which areas consist of suitable material to bury and preserve archaeological material.

 

c.           Detailed examination of the boomer and side scan sonar records to map anomalies on the seabed which may be archaeological material.

 

 

(3)      Establishing Archaeological Potential

 

3.1     The data examined during Tasks 1 and 2 will be analysed to provide an indication of the likely character and extent of archaeological resources within the study area.  This would facilitate formulation of a strategy for investigation.

 

3.2     The results would be presented as a written report and charts.  If there is no indication of archaeological potential there would be no need for Task 4.

 

(4)      Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV)/Visual Diver Survey/Watching Brief

 

4.1     Subject to the outcome of Tasks 1, 2 and 3, accepted marine archaeological practice would be to plan a field evaluation programme to acquire more detailed data on areas identified as having archaeological potential.  The areas of archaeological interest can be inspected by ROV or divers.