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International Environmental Impact Assessment - Atkins

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01Why Atkins?Atkins is one of the world’s leading engineering and designconsultancies. We have the depth and breadth of expertise torespond to the most technically challenging and time-criticalinfrastructure projects, as well as the urgent transition to alow carbon economy. Our people bring significant value toour clients, harnessing an unrivalled breadth of skills and deeptechnical expertise to produce outstanding solutions to themost challenging problems. We have experience across the fulldevelopment lifecycle, from inception through masterplanningand development planning to construction, operation,decommissioning and demolition.Our environmental consultants understand both how thingswork and how things are built, and are excellent at integratingthe environmental sciences on engineering projects. We are alsoexperienced in providing feedback from EIA into project design.We seek to deliver solutions that are pragmatic, innovative andcost effective. We have senior EIA Practitioners on the register ofthe UK Institute for Environmental Management and Assessment,and our EIA managers can call on a vast range of technicalspecialists, project managers and engineers to support anyEIA project.Our experience in undertaking Environmental Impact Assessments(EIA), Health, Safety and Environmental Impact Assessment(HSEIA), and Environmental & Social Impact Assessments (ESIA)is extensive. We work with our clients to develop sustainablesolutions to the environmental challenges they face and addvalue to our clients’ businesses by delivering excellence andinnovation. We focus on improving environmental managementperformance, risk and liability management and competitiveness.We seek to deliver savings and efficiencies in time, cost andresources. What our clients really value is how we work –we seek outcomes that are transformational.5


02Drivers for EIAEnvironmental Impact Assessment is used to identify andunderstand the significant environmental consequences of a newdevelopment. It is an iterative process that identifies the potentialimpacts of a project, adopts design changes and measures toreduce or remove any negative effects, and then re-evaluates theremaining effects. The potential impacts identified through EIAcan then be weighed in the balance when a decision is made asto whether the development should proceed. The outcome of theEIA is reported in an Environmental Statement.With the world’s leading economies on the fast track to a lowcarbon future, it is our role to help our clients understand andprepare for the crucial responsibility of delivering infrastructurein a carbon conscious world. EIA can play a major part in this bypromoting environmentally sound and sustainable developmentthrough the identification of appropriate enhancement andmitigation measures within the chosen project option.As a rigorous test of environmental sustainability, thebasic process is now required in the consenting systems ofmost developed countries around the world and can bringhuge benefits in terms of understanding and dealing withenvironmental issues in relation to major developments.Although most EIAs derive from legislative requirements, somedevelopers of projects that may not actually require a formal EIArecognise the benefits of the process and the demonstration ofenvironmental responsibility that comes with it.7


Our experience10


Durrat Al Bahrain resort, BahrainClient: Durrat Khaleej Al BahrainWe prepared a number of EIAs and related studies for the Durrat Resort, a coastaldevelopment at the southern end of Bahrain Island. The resort is intended to offerfacilities for all market sectors – permanent residences, holiday homes, short stay andday visitors – and have a population of over 50,000.The first EIA assessed the impacts of dredging and reclamation and led to thedevelopment of an environmental compensation plan. This was followed by an EIA forthe masterplan/land development and infrastructure. Supplementary EIAs for the utilitieswere undertaken, investigating in particular the combination of outfalls from the districtcooling, wastewater treatment and desalination plants. Environmental MonitoringProgrammes and Environmental Management Plans were prepared and implemented onsite during the construction of the resort.The EIAs were undertaken in accordance with the requirements of the EnvironmentalAssessment and Planning Directorate (EAPD) of the Public Commission for theProtection of Marine Resources, Environment and Wildlife.12


Sohar aluminium smelter, OmanClient: Alcan/Oman OilAtkins’ economics team undertook the Social Impact Assessment(SIA) for a new aluminium smelter proposed for the Al BatinahRegion of Oman on behalf of Alcan Inc. The SIA evaluated theeffects of the project on the communities living in the area ofinfluence of the project and considered the socio-economicimpacts on standard of living and quality of life of individuals intheir day-to-day activities, perceptions and values. Interviews withkey personnel at the concerned Ministries in Oman, collation ofpublished data and material on the area and current planningsystems, field visits and interviews with local officials and localcommunities were all undertaken.Following start-up of the construction of the aluminium smelter,Atkins was recommissioned to provide a socio-economicimpact appraisal of the operation of the smelter. The appraisalfocussed particularly on the economic impacts of the smelter andbenchmarked them against other heavy industry projectsin operation and planned for Oman.14


Nimba iron ore development, LiberiaClient: ArcelorMittalWe undertook strategic Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) followed by detailedEIAs and SIAs for a programme of mining development extending from exploration through topost closure, as well as associated rail port and community infrastructure. Inputs ranged fromdeveloping corporate in-country environmental and social policies, liaison with ministries andkey national and international stakeholders to develop national standards, through design andimplementation of communication strategies, detailed desk studies and survey programmes,international, national, local stakeholder workshops to achieve buy-in, assessment of impacts andformulation and implementation of mitigation and management plans for economic resettlementand implementation of community communication strategies ensuring disclosure, and participation.The work was undertaken in accordance with international standards relating to ESIA and those ofthe extractive industries, including the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the InternationalCouncil on Mining and Metals, and ArcelorMittal.15


Greenwich Peninsula masterplan, UKClient: New Millennium Experience Company Ltd/English PartnershipsWe were instrumental in obtaining planning permission for theMillennium Dome and played a major role in developing andobtaining permission for the masterplan for the entire peninsula,comprising 5,000 homes and 200,000 m 2 of commercialdevelopment. The work included the preparation of an EIA forthe original scheme and detailed design, procurement ofcontracts, supervision on site and installation from scratch ofall drainage, water supply, utilities and roads, including majorimprovements to the A102(M) trunk road access.Atkins was also involved in the assessment and evaluation ofproposals for the future development of the Greenwich Peninsulafollowing the closure of the Millennium Experience.Atkins undertook an EIA for the Dome Legacy Project whichconsidered two alternative development options for the wider areaaround the Dome and provided an assessment of the impact andsustainability of different mixes of residential, employment, leisureand town centre uses and alternative development densities.16


Antea cement plant, AlbaniaClient: Titan GroupAtkins prepared a full Environmental and Social Impact Assessment on behalf of the European Bank forReconstruction and Development (EBRD) and IFC for a new cement production facility near Tirana, inAlbania. The development is being undertaken by Antea Cement, part of the Greek owned Titan Group,and will involve production of a 78% cement blend from a 3,300 tonnes per day clinker line. The ESIAincorporated assessment, proposal of mitigation measures and development of a management programmefor all related environmental and social aspects of the project. The scope of the project included the mainproduction facility, two feed quarries, as well as related infrastructure development.We successfully managed the input of several groups of key participants including manyrepresentatives from the investment institutions, Antea/Titan, local regulatoryauthorities, non-governmental organisations and several hundred vulnerablelocal stakeholders, culminating in the resolution of complex problemsto the satisfaction of those involved.17


Qatalum project, QatarClient: Hydro Aluminium AS & Qatar PetroleumWe prepared an Environmental Impact Assessment and SocialImpact Assessment for an aluminium plant, dedicated powerplant, utilities and port area which was being constructed in theMesaieed Industrial City (MIC) in Qatar.The project included environmental monitoring and surveying -air quality monitoring, soil and groundwater sampling, marinesurveying, terrestrial ecology surveying - Best Available Techniques(BAT) assessment, and air and marine dispersion modelling.The social assessment work was undertaken in line with IFC/World Bank requirements, Equator Principles, and the corporatesocial responsibility procedures of the project partners.18


Candlestick Park-Hunters Point Shipyard Phase IIEIR, San Francisco, USAClient: Lennar Urban/San Francisco Redevelopment AgencyWe prepared an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) to assess theimpacts that would occur with redevelopment of CandlestickPoint-Hunters Point Shipyard in the City/County of San Francisco.The area is renowned for Candlestick Park, home of the SanFrancisco 49ers football team, and for the Hunters Point Shipyardsite, one of the largest Superfund sites in the US.The overarching goal for redevelopment of the 285ha area wasto revitalise the Bayview Hunters Point community by maximizingreuse of the naval shipyard, financing improvement of thestate parkland, maintaining and enhancing an historic African-American neighbourhood and providing housing options andan integrated transportation plan. The comprehensive plans ofthe San Francisco Redevelopment Agency, Mayor’s Office ofEconomic Development, and Lennar Urban included: more than10,000 residential units; research and development uses; retailand community services; and a potential new football stadiumfor the San Francisco 49ers. The award winning EIR helped secureapproval to the redevelopment plans for the area.19


Alchevsk iron and steel works, UkraineClient: EBRDAlchevsk Iron & Steel Works (AMK) was carrying out an intensiverefurbishment programme of its steelworks to increase itscompetitiveness within the national and international marketsand reduce its environmental impact on the city of Alchevsk. Aspart of the modernisation program AMK planned to construct aCombined Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) electricity generation facility,using coke oven, blast furnace and basic oxygen converter gasesas fuel. The EBRD was approached to provide a loan to financethe CCGT development and in turn it approached Atkins toundertake an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment of theproject in accordance with the bank’s policies and procedures.20


New combined direct reduction iron (DRI) /hot briquetted iron plant, QatarClient: Qatar Steel (QASCO)QASCO is a widely recognised leader in steel production,especially within the Middle East region. Midrex – the leadingDRI technology vendor – employed us to conduct an EIA ofQASCO’s production expansion programme. Theexpansion programme comprised the installationof an additional DRI plant to both satisfy existing steelplant demand and to generate hot briquetted iron for saleon the merchant market. Technical assessment focused on theDRI process and associated utilities covering dust emissions,atmospheric emissions, seawater cooling discharges and wastegeneration. We also undertook baseline marine ecologicalsurvey and hydrodynamic surveys in order to put the findingsinto context, make appropriate recommendations and confirmcompliance with the regulatory framework.21


22HOSCO DRI plant and slab steel mill, IranClient: Fortis BankWe were commissioned by Fortis Bank to undertake detailedenvironmental assessment in order to supplement the EIA whichhad been prepared for Hormozgan Steel’s proposed directreduction iron (DRI) plant and Steel Slab Mill. The purpose of thework was to bring the EIA in line with the funding requirementsof the World Bank and IFC. This was developed within the Minesand Metals Special Economic Zone in Bandar Abbas, HormozganProvince, Iran.The supplementary EIA was scoped to cover those areas thathad not been examined to World Bank Standards when theproject was given consent under Iranian law. These comprised airquality modelling, detailed modelling of outfall discharges andthe modelling of noise impacts. The results of these additionalstudies, plus the findings of the original EIA were used todevelop an Environmental and Social Management Plan whichwas subsequently used as the basis for the management ofthe scheme during construction, a process that Atkins was alsoretained to supervise.


BAT Assessment of ferrous andnon-ferrous metals facilities,KazakhstanClient: ENRCWe were commissioned to undertake BestAvailable Techniques (BAT) Assessments andbenchmark reviews of an alumina plant, aprimary aluminium smelter, two ferro-alloy(smelters one of which included a coke plant),two coal-fired combine heat and power(CHP) plants, and two gas-fired CHP plants.The facilities were located in Pavlodar, Aksu,Aktyubinsk and Khromtau in Kazakhstan. Theassessment was undertaken with reference toEU BRef notes on Non Ferrous Metals Industriesand Large Combustion Plant.23


05TransportLight rail depot, DubaiClient: Road Transport Authority (RTA)Atkins was commissioned by the Dubai Rapid Link Consortium(DURL) to assess the environmental impacts associated withthe construction and operation of the Dubai Metro RashidiyaMaintenance Depot and Jebel Ali Auxiliary Depot. The Depotsincluded siding and cleaning tracks, test tracks, low-rise offices,workshops, car park, access roads and several other low-risefacilities. Environmental impacts was assessed with respect tonoise and vibration, ecology, archaeology and heritage, air quality,visual impact, soils and geology, waste management, waterquality and resources, and socio-economic aspects. The Rashidiyaand Jebel Ali Depot Environmental Impact Summaries were bothsuccessfully approved by Dubai Municipality.25


Al Khor Aerodrome project, QatarClient: Gulf HelicoptersAtkins was commissioned by Gulf Helicopters to undertake anEnvironmental Scoping Study (ESS) for the Al Khor Aerodromeproject. The aim of the ESS was to define the contents, scope andmethodology for a full Environmental Impact Assessment whichwould be required in support of statutory permitting.The project was intended to expand airstrip facilities at Al Khorwhich at the time supported flying school operations. An areaof approximately 340 ha of previously undeveloped land to thenorth side of the existing airstrip had been allocated to theproject. Approximately 25% of this area was allocated tothe development of the new facilities which included taxiways,aircraft parking aprons, hangers, maintenance facilities,administration buildings, car parking, passenger terminals,an access road and utilities. Key environmental issues forthe project were identified as the effective environmentalmanagement of construction activities, and operationalaircraft noise.26


Retrofitting of noise barriers,ChinaClient: Highways Department, HongKong SARAtkins was commissioned to developcost-effective noise mitigation schemesfor 13 packages of works in the NewTerritories, Kowloon, Tsuen Kwan O andHong Kong Island.The project involved a review of previousfeasibility studies and the identification ofchanges in the numbers and locations ofnoise sensitive receivers, prevailing trafficflows, cost effectiveness, land requirementsand environmental impact considerations.Noise mitigation measures were appraisedand material prepared for consultation withthe public and district councils. Ultimatelycost estimates were developed and animplementation programme prepared.27


Khalifa, Rayyan and Al Bustanroad scheme, QatarClient: Public Works AuthorityWe were commissioned to undertake the concept design andEIA studies for improvements to Khalifa, Rayyan and Al BustanRoads in Doha, Qatar. Initially a scoping study was prepared toidentify potential environmental limitations and opportunitiesassociated with the project, applicable environmental regulations,sensitive receptors, and project-specific environmental issues.Recommendations for relevant enhancement measures andfurther investigations were developed.Subsequently we undertook a series of baseline studies aspart of the EIA. These included landscape and visual impact,soil contamination, surface water, groundwater quality andhydrogeology, noise and vibration, air quality, ecology, socialand community issues and archaeology and built heritage.28


Telford railfreight terminal, UKClient: Telford and Wrekin Borough CouncilWe carried out an EIA for a new railfreight terminal and the openingup of an old railway line as part of a Transport and Works Actapplication. The project included an assessment of a Ministry ofDefence site which is to be used for employment purposes but hadpreviously been used for operational purposes. The employment usesare intended to support the justification of the rail line. The needfor the line was predicated on the sub-regional need to developsustainable links to the Trunk Rail network.29


Heathrow Terminal 5 surface access, UKClient: Highways Agency/BAA plcWe were commissioned to design access proposals for Terminal 5 atHeathrow Airport. The proposals comprised motorway access on theadjacent M25 and associated widening of the M4 between junctions3 and 4B. Our role included production of preliminary highway designdetails and public consultation material; preparation of environmentalstatements (out setting the findings of an EIA); taking the schemesthrough public inquiry; and providing expert witnesses on traffic,engineering and environmental matters.The EIA covered a broad spectrum of environmental issues includingecology, noise, air quality, agriculture/land use, landscape and visualimpact and socio-economic effects. The impact of construction trafficwas one of the major issues addressed.30


06Water infrastructureBujagali hydropower project, UgandaClient: AES Nile PowerAES Nile Power proposed the construction of a 25m high damand hydropower facility at Bujagali Falls on the Upper Nile nearJinja, with funding from IFC and Overseas Private InvestmentCorporation. Eight kilometres below the Owen Falls Dam, it isthe next downstream site suitable for developing hydro-electricpower generation.Atkins was commissioned to study the environmental impactof the proposals which included an assessment of the impactsof the associated power line route from Bujagali to Kampala.Population displacement was found to be the principal impactof the dam. We undertook a detailed socio-economic surveyof 5,700 people, who were likely to be displaced or affectedby the project. A public consultation and disclosure plan wasproduced to ensure that all stakeholders were fully involved in theproject planning process. This was followed by a re-settlementand compensation plan that provided full details, includinginstitutional arrangements, for dealing with the displaced people.31


Central Reclamation Phase III, ChinaClient: Civil Engineering and Development Department, Hong Kong SARAtkins was appointed by the Hong Kong Government to undertake the design andmanagement of the Central Reclamation Project. This is a major development comprising18 hectares of reclamation, construction of one kilometre of wave absorbing seawalls,new ferry and public piers and berth for the People’s Liberation Army Forces in Hong Kong,construction of major cooling water pumping stations and tunnelling. The ultimate designwill create a waterfront that complements Hong Kong’s famous skyline.As part of the project we undertook a comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessmentof the works, and developed a programme for the management of environmental aspectsduring construction. Atkins established a resident environmental team which was responsiblefor environmental management, data interpretation and reporting on environmentalperformance to government.33


Industrial Water Supply, UgandaClient: ConfidentialWe were commissioned to investigate options for an industrialwater supply in Uganda and identify the preferred option,considering water availability and technical feasibility, potentialenvironmental and social impacts and cost of developmentand operation. The study included:• Hydrological and hydrogeological analysis to assesspotential surface water and groundwater supplies• Water quality investigations34• Engineering feasibility• Cost analysis• Environmental and social impact assessment.The environmental and social impact assessment was criticalto the selection of the preferred option as the development isclose to internationally important water-dependent ecosystems.The source with minimum impact on the environment and localcommunities was identified and baseline ecological surveys werecarried out at the water intake and at pipeline and infrastructurelocations. Design measures were proposed to mitigate potentiallocal impacts of the water supply system.


Kainji and Jebba Dams Rehabilitation Projects,NigeriaClient: Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN)As the first step in exploring opportunities to increase thecapacity of the Kainji and Jebba Dams PHCN commissionedAtkins to update the Environmental and Social ManagementPlan (ESMP) and to provide advice on the early warning systemand on dam safety. Updating the ESMP entailed an assessmentof the environmental and social impacts of the projects and theidentification of mitigation measures to address adverse impacts.The key output from this assessment was a plan to enhance thecapacity of the proposed Environmental, Resettlement andSocial Unit (ESRU).35


07Energy infrastructureOGD-III & AGD-II project, Abu DhabiClient: International Bechtel Co. LtdAbu Dhabi Gas Industries Ltd (GASCO) – the Abu Dhabi NationalOil Company (ADNOC) responsible for processing onshore naturalgas and associated gas from onshore oil production – appointedBechtel to undertake the front end engineering design of theOGD-III & AGD-II project. The project comprised five separatedevelopments, namely two new gas plants at Habshan and Asab,a new natural gas liquid (NGL) fractionation plant at Ruwais, theextension of a gas gathering and re-injection system and newcondensate storage facilities at Ruwais.An essential component of the ADNOC project licensing processinvolves the preparation of a Health, Safety and EnvironmentalImpact Assessment (HSEIA) which must be approved before aproject can move to its next phase.Bechtel retained Atkins to prepare HSEIAs for each of the fiveOGD-III & AGD-II sub-projects. The work involved environmentalsurveying of the terrestrial and marine environments in AbuDhabi, air monitoring, hydrodynamic and air dispersion modelling,and a review of environmental, occupational health and processsafety hazards and risks. The study was completed successfullyagainst the background of a changing regulatory environment.36


Longannet life extension project, UKClient: ScottishPower GenerationScottishPower is investing in extending the lifespan of Longannet Power Station,one of the largest coal-fired power stations in Europe, to modern environmentalstandards, including retrofitting Selective Catalytic Reduction technology to threeexisting boilers. Atkins was appointed to undertake the EIA and to produce theEnvironmental Statement.Elements of the project were initially opposed by local communities andcomplicated by the proximity of designated nature conservation sites.The Environmental Statement helped to shape a less contentious designand demonstrated that the work could be undertaken and managed withno significant detrimental effects to the environment.37


Grangemouth biodiesel plant, UKClient: INEOS Enterprises LtdThe Grangemouth biodiesel plant near Falkirk in Scotland usesvegetable oils to create a sustainable source of liquid fuel. INEOSappointed Atkins to produce the Environmental Statement tosupport the planning application for the plant, which was to bethe largest, and one of the first of its kind in the UK.The Environmental Statement demonstrated that the constructionand operation of the biodiesel plant could be managed withoutsignificant detriment to the environment, and reassuredstakeholders about a range of issues including flood riskand nearby designated nature conservation sites. INEOS wassubsequently successful in obtaining planning permission forthe plant.38


Environmental baseline survey of Awalifield, BahrainClient: TATWEER PetroleumAtkins was commissioned by TATWEER to undertake an InitialEnvironmental Baseline Survey of the Bahrain oil and gas field.The survey involved in-field data collection and analysis, intrusiveinvestigation, review of existing published information, andconsultations with relevant government ministries in order toestablish the Bahrain field environmental baseline with respect togeology and geomorphology; soil contamination; groundwatercharacteristics/hydrogeology; hydrology; terrestrial ecology; climateand meteorology; air quality; noise; land use, culture and heritage(archaeological resources); and socio-economic environment.The purpose of recording these data was to supportenvironmental and social management plans which will bedeveloped for the field, provide environmental data for anysubsequent and separate impact assessments, establish anenvironmental and social baseline against which any futurechanges resulting from TATWEER’s development of the field,can be measured, and identify prevailing environmental, healthand safety impacts, in particular those associated with historicoperating practices.39


Kasamene oil field development, UgandaClient: ConfidentialAtkins undertook the Environmental and Social ImpactAssessment for oil field and gas pipeline developments inNorthwest Uganda. These comprised construction, operationand decommissioning of production and injection wells, waterabstraction from international waterways, processing facilities,transmission and outward transport routes in areas of highbiodiversity and social tension. The study involved a legal review,development of customised methods to comply with Ugandanand international standards, including those of IFC and EquatorPrinciples, design and implementation of baseline studiesincluding fieldwork, and assessment and developmentof mitigation measures.Key issues identified related to the high biodiversity values, wastemanagement and complex social issues, notably those associatedwith land tenure, access to physical economic and cultural assetsand resettlement. In addition to the preparation of the ESIA,tasks included, development and implementation of a stakeholdermapping and communication strategy from national down tocommunity level and identification mitigation, compensationand offset measures.40


Preliminary environmental survey of Shah andBab, Abu DhabiClient: BP ExplorationWe undertook a preliminary environmental survey of the Bab andShah regions of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates to identifyValued Ecosystem Components, environmental sensitivities andrisks associated with these locations which could have beensignificant in the context of proposed future oil and gas projectswithin the area, in particular a proposed sour gas development.The Shah area is characterised by massive dunes which in placesreach heights of up to 150 m above the adjacent plains. Thearea is thus considered to have high scenic value. The negativeenvironmental impact on the dramatic dune landscape ofproject activities was therefore a key consideration.41


Karawan Block 54 development, OmanClient: Occidental Oman L.L.C.Occidental (OXY) has a concession to carry out oil explorationin Oman’s Block 54, an area of considerable environmentalsensitivity which is located immediately adjacent to the formerArabian Oryx Sanctuary World Heritage Site. OXY appointed usto undertake an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment oftheir proposed seismic and drilling exploration programme. Themain emphasis of our work was to establish baseline social andecological conditions across the 5,500 km 2 concession area.This particular part of central Oman is a fragile “fog desert”with atmospheric moisture helping to support some interestingvegetation that in turn nourishes not just the iconic oryx, butgazelle, hares, small mammals and an array of reptiles.It was not practical to survey every part of the very largeconcession area, so satellite imagery was used to delineatesensitive areas to be avoided during the exploration programme.Interpretation of imagery data was verified using a series of‘ground-truthing’ surveys aimed at representing the range ofhabitat types present.42


BAT assessment of Gimboa FPSO, ItalyClient: SaipemWe undertook an assessment of Best Available Techniques (BAT)for the control of environmental releases from the GimboaFloating Production Storage and Offloading vessel (FPSO). Thevessel was being converted by Saipem from an oil tanker intoan FPSO with a storage capacity of 1,800,000 barrels and aproduction capacity of 60,000 barrels of oil per day. It was due tobe leased to Angola Deepwater Consortium for the developmentof the Gimboa field, located about 85 km off the coast of Angola,in Block 4/05, at a water depth of 700 m. The FPSO was designedto allow at least 15 years of continuous offshore operationwithout the requirement for dry-docking in a shipyard.43


Rayong refinery fugitive emissions survey,ThailandClient: Rayong RefineryWe were commissioned to evaluate the performance of RayongRefinery’s fugitive control measures when compared with bestpractice and industry norms. The study was undertaken inconjunction with the Thai Department of Industrial Works andinvolved a fugitive emissions survey, an evaluation of the impacton the local community of the fugitive releases in terms of healtheffects and odour nuisance, and a review of the process plantcontrol measures incorporated in the refinery’s design, withparticular emphasis on the Effluent Treatment Plant.44


Mukhaizna Block 53 Development, OmanClient: Occidental Mukhaizna L.L.C. (Oxy)We undertook an Environmental and Social Impact Assessmentstudy of Oxy’s steam-enhanced oil recovery project. Key issuesincluded the evaluation of hydrological impacts of winning anddisposing of the significant volumes of water required for thesteam injection process. Baseline studies included evaluationof noise, air quality and groundwater. Being located closeto the former Arabian Oryx Sanctuary World Heritage Site,ecological issues were a prime concern. The study also included acomprehensive Social Impact Assessment involving consultationwith indigenous Bedu and various institutionalproject stakeholders.45


Flare handling and emissions reduction project,Abu DhabiClient: Fluor LtdWe prepared a Phase I (front end engineering design stage)HSEIA for the flare handling and emissions reduction projectlocated on Das Island in the Arabian Gulf. The HSEIA involved thepreparation of a HAZID/ENVID report, and Environmental ImpactStatement (including pollution prevention & control report),a Hazards & Effects Register, a Quantitative Risk Assessmentfor construction and commissioning activities, an EmergencyResponse Plan, an Occupational Health Risk Assessment, aCOMAH report and the main HSEIA report itself. The HSEIA wasconducted in compliance with the ADNOC HSE Codes of Practiceand was subject to independent third party verification.46


Dragon Liquefied Natural Gas terminal BAT assessment, UKClient: Whessoe Oil and Gas /Volker StevinWe undertook an assessment of Best Available Techniques (BAT) for thecontrol of environmental releases from the Dragon LNG import, storage andregasification terminal situated on the Milford Haven Waterway, Pembrokeshire,South West Wales. The facility has a start up capacity of six billion cubic metresof gas per annum to supply the UK’s National Transmission System, as andwhen required, to meet peak demand. Our assessment encompassed all of theterminal’s operations from offloading to export from the site. In the absence ofa prescribed BAT from official sources for the design and operation of this typeof facility, our expert team first had to derive BAT for the facility design andmanagement operations and gain agreement from the Regulator. The finishedBAT assessment was successfully accepted by the UK regulatory authorities andwas a key deliverable to ensure compliance with the environmental permittingrequirements of the facility.47


Habshan gas complex expansion (HGCE) project,Abu DhabiClient: Fluor LtdFluor appointed us to conduct a Phase II (engineering,procurement and construction-stage) HSEIA study of the HGCEproject on behalf of GASCO. The HGCE project was intendedto expand the capacity of what was already one of the world’slargest gas processing facilities.It was essential that the HSEIA was conducted in full compliancewith ADNOC HSE codes of practice. The EIA component providedan integrated assessment of the impacts associated with theconstruction and operation of the project and also formed thebasis of the environmental management system implementedduring the construction phase.48


Dolovo windfarm, SerbiaClient: Continental Wind PowerAtkins undertook a full Environmental and Social ImpactAssessment of a proposed 160 MW windfarm site in Vojvodinaprovince, Serbia. The proposed development covers an area of40 km2 and lies at the south of the Pannonian Plain of centralEurope. The development site comprises mainly flat agriculturalland, but it is situated adjacent to a sensitive ecological area, theDolovo Sands. Relict fragments of the steppe grasslands whichwould have once covered much of this area are still presentaround the margins of the site.Study elements included socio-economic impact assessmentand the preparation of a Stakeholder Engagement Plan and aResettlement Plan, landscape and visual impact assessment, andhabitat surveying. We identified and mapped habitats presentwithin the site, and assessed the potential for legally protectedor notable species. We used the internationally recognised Britishtechnique of Phase 1 habitat mapping developed by the JointNature Conservation Committee, along with the EUNIS (EuropeanUnion Nature Information System) system of European habitatclassification developed by the European Environment Agency.A terrestrial ecologist from Atkins worked alongside a localecological specialist from Belgrade University.49


Guangdong LNG terminal and trunkline project,ChinaClient: BP CNOOCWe were commissioned to undertake the Environmental andSocial Impact Assessment of the first combined Liquefied NaturalGas (LNG) terminal and trunkline delivery project in the People’sRepublic of China (PRC). The project involved the construction ofmarine approach channels, berthing facilities, LNG process plant,storage and send-out facilities along with over 310 km of pipelinewhich ran through both rural and heavily urbanised areas fromShenzhen to Guangzhou.50The ESIA was conducted to international standards and PRCregulatory requirements. Atkins was responsible for supervisingthe local PRC EIA contractor and undertaking supporting studiesand surveys. These included ENVID studies, hydrographic andmarine ecology surveys, pipeline alignment surveys and routingoptimisation, terrestrial baseline surveys, public consultation, 3Dhydrodynamic modelling, preparation of a project EnvironmentalManagement Plan, development of a project database ofbaseline information and GIS system and preparation ofpublic disclosure documentation.


Ningbo Huadong Liquified Petroleum Gasterminal facility, ChinaClient: BP AmocoWe were appointed by BP to undertake the ESIA for theconstruction and operation of two 250,000 m 3 undergroundrock caverns designed for the storage of propane and butane, a5,000 ton wharf and a 50,000 ton wharf to be used for incomingvessels. The ESIA assessed environmental implications of theconstruction and operation of the project and was undertaken inaccordance with BP’s corporate policy. A Social Impact Assessmentwas also conducted to determine the likely impacts that theproject may have over the socio-economic situation of theproject area.Public consultation was undertaken with the relevant governmentauthorities and local villages at the early stages of the project toidentify impacts and concerns. We provided training workshopson environmental management at the beginning of theconstruction phase to facilitate ISO 14001 Certification.51


Chang Bei natural gas field, ChinaClient: Shell-PetroChina JVAtkins received the top award - 1st Class - from the ChinaNational Association of Engineering Consulting (CNAEC) forour Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) forthe development of the Chang Bei natural gas field in ShaanxiProvince, China. This was the first time this prestigious awardwas given to an ESIA project.The project was designed to deliver three billion cubic metres ofnatural gas per annum, and involved the design and developmentof a 1,600 km 2 concession area, installation of 60 wells andseveral hundred kilometres of pipeline and new roads.The ESIA was notable in several ways. It was the first tofully integrate Chinese and international approaches to ESIA,delivering a single document to gain all approvals – in Chinaand at Corporate level – and a single set of guidelines for futuremanagement of the project. The study also adopted cutting-edgesurvey techniques and GIS applications, using remote sensingto overcome many of the problems caused by the remote andinaccessible desert site.52


Pre-ISO 14001 certification audits, OmanClient: Petroleum Development Oman (PDO)We undertook pre-ISO 14001 certification audits of PDOInterior exploration and production assets at Yibal, Fahudand Qarn Alam.The project aim was to identify the significant environmentalaspects associated with drilling and seismic activities withindefined asset areas, operation of oil and gas gatheringstations, NGL plant, power stations and crude stabilisationplant. The project addressed a wide range of environmentalissues associated with atmospheric emissions, waste disposal,liquid effluent treatment and disposal, groundwaterresource depletion, noise, ecological and cultural impactsand NORM handling and disposal.53


Ruwais refinery expansion project, Abu DhabiClient: International Bechtel Company LtdWe prepared the HSEIA for the front end engineering design phase of the Ruwais refineryexpansion (RRE) project. The project involved the design of a new refinery at Ruwais, AbuDhabi, to produce high value polymer grade propylene and traditional ‘fuels’ productsfrom Murban blend crude oil feedstock. The HSEIA involved the preparation of anEnvironmental Impact Assessment and a range of safety studies.A key component of the EIA was a three dimensional mathematical, hydrodynamic anddispersion modelling study of the Ruwais area which was used to evaluate the variationin sea water temperature at the sub-sea inlet to the RRE Sea Water System, and thetemperature and pH dispersion characteristics resulting from the discharge of the returncooling water to the Ruwais near-shore environment via the RRE cooling water outfall.54


Mina Al Fahal odour survey, OmanClient: Petroleum Development OmanActing on behalf of a consortium of operators situated within the Mina Al Fahal Industrial and Portareas, we undertook an investigation into the causes of odour nuisance affecting the Muscat andRuwi areas. The work was carried out over two periods of six weeks to assess the variation in odournuisance between winter and summer conditions and involved the identification of significant odoursources within an 85,000 barrels per day refinery, a crude oil storage and handling terminal andvarious petroleum product distribution depots, the quantification of the odorous releases,and the formulation of an improvement programme. The programme focusedchiefly on tanker loading operations and the operation ofthe effluent treatment plant.55


Sellafield Piles 1 and 2 decommissioning, UKClient: United Kingdom Atomic Energy Agency (UKAEA)In support of the UKAEA decommissioning of Windscale (now Sellafield) Piles 1 and 2, we completed theEIA to cover a number of regulatory requirements (Town & Country Planning, EIAD Regs, Euratom Article37 etc). We were contracted to undertake a preliminary EIA to identify both project and environmentalbaseline requirements. The project involved the full range of environmental specialists and was completedwithin a tight timescale to meet client milestones. This is one of a number of complex EIAs that Atkinshas successfully coordinated and managed on nuclear licensed sites.56


08Marine and coastalPost-hurricane assessment of Flower GardenBanks vicinity, Gulf of Mexico, USAClient: Department of Interior (DOI), Bureau of OceanEnergy Management, Regulation and EnforcementThe 2005 hurricane season was the most active on record with11 tropical cyclones entering the Gulf of Mexico. HurricanesKatrina and Rita passed close to several shallow, sensitivehabitats in the vicinity of the Flower Garden Banks NationalMarine Sanctuary (FGB). The U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureauof Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement(BOEMRE) was thus concerned that the storms may have leftbank caps exposed and feared potential catastrophicimplications for benthic community structure.Atkins was commissioned to assess and document possibledamage to the banks. Four banks – Sonnier, McGrail, Geyer,and Bright – were surveyed by diver and remotely operatedvehicle in order to establish a benthic habitat baseline andassess possible hurricane damage at multiple depth ranges.57


Port Mesaieed industrial city, QatarClient: Dragomar S.p.A / QASCO / MIDREX / HYDROAtkins was commissioned to undertake four EIA projects withinthe MIC in eastern Qatar. These projects involved baseline marineenvironmental surveys of the dredging and disposal areas of theouter approach and inner channels of Port Mesaieed. The surveysincluded sediment and water quality sampling and dive surveysto study marine flora and fauna.58The scope of works included identifying relevant national andinternational legislation within which the proposed developmentwould proceed, describing the proposed dredging operations,describing the physical, chemical, biological and socio-economicenvironment of the region, assessing and evaluating the potentialenvironmental impacts associated with the dredging operations,recommending mitigation and management for the dredgingoperations, and recommending monitoring during and afterdredging operations.


Flower Garden Banks national marine sanctuarylong-term monitoring, USAClient: DOI, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management,Regulation and EnforcementFlower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (FGB) off theTexas coast is a national treasure and home to the most sensitivebiological habitat in the federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico.Atkins teamed with other coral reef experts on an eight yearlong-term coral reef monitoring project for the U.S. Departmentof Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulationand Enforcement. Our goals were to monitor coral populationsto detect changes that may be caused by oil and gas activities,and address concerns related to both gradual and punctuateddegradation of this unique offshore ecosystem.Members of the Atkins Scientific Dive Team recorded benthic,fishery, and water quality data to address the regulatoryissues confronting BOEMRE and the National Oceanic andAtmospheric Administration. Throughout the eight-yearcontract period, we maintained a consistent project team withFGB experience, which allowed for continuous collection ofsubstantial quantities of data, often with limited time framesfor field work because of unfavourable weather conditions inthe Gulf of Mexico.59


Pak Sha Wan Yacht Club expansion, ChinaClient: Hebe Haven Yacht Club Ltd, Hong Kong SARWe developed and implemented the Environmental Monitoringand Audit programme for the construction phase of the HebeHaven Yacht Club. The project included development of a boatstorage and repair site and a 46 berth pontoon marina facility,and involved land reclamation and dredging in a scenic areamade ecologically sensitive due to its mangroves and fisheries.A comprehensive water quality monitoring programme wasundertaken to assess impacts associated with dredging andreclamation activities. Site inspections were regularly carried outto ensure that impacts did not occur either to the facilities orthe surrounding waters.60


Palm Beach Harbour navigation feasibility andenvironmental resources studies, USAClient: Ardaman & Associates Inc.We undertook a marine ecological survey of Palm Beach Harbourin Florida in order to document all of the biological resourcesin and around the harbour area. Among the resources includedin the scientific diving survey were seagrasses, colonisedhardbottom, manatee habitat and popular diving and snorkellingareas. Information collected from the survey, coupled withpreviously collected data, enabled an assessment to be made ofimpacts arising from port dredging, expansion, modificationsand associated mitigation.All of the work undertaken complied with the NationalEnvironmental Policy Act (NEPA), Endangered Species Act, Fish andWildlife Coordination Act, Clean Water Act, Magnuson-StevensFishery Conservation and Management Act and similar laws.61


Paul WhiteAtkinsEuston Tower286 Euston RoadLondonNW1 3ATUKTel: +44 (0)20 7121 2612Email: paul.white@atkinsglobal.comwww.atkinsglobal.com© Atkins Limited except where stated otherwise. The Atkins logo, ‘Carbon Critical Design’and the strapline ‘Plan Design Enable’ are trademarks of Atkins Limited.62

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