Environmental Impact Assessment & Analysis Task: Outline the EIA process in Jamaica and compare the guidelines of NEPA and NRCA. Highlight 4 high profile development cases in Jamaica using a case study approach. Done by: Michael Gordon (0902335) & Kayrie Ramcharan (ID# 0604664) Prepared for: Ms. H. Smith University of Technology, Jamaica Submission Date: Monday November 12, 2012 Introduction & Background The interaction of mankind with natural environmental systems has resulted in disruptions and changes that affect their normal progression.
The possible effect of these changes on environmental quality and livelihoods in human settlements has lead to the need to manage this interaction between mankind and the environment. Within the limited land space and often fragile ecosystems of small developing islands such as Jamaica, the need to reduce poverty and all its ramifications has increased the imperative for developments, and therefore the challenge to harmonise developments with environmental management principles is often colossal.
Diverse processes and tools such as the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) has evolved to assist in this environmental management, which itself has undergone evolutionary changes as more data have become available on natural systems and human development. The Natural Resources Conservation Authority (NRCA) in July1997 established the first set of guidelines for the conducting of EIAs in Jamaica, as a means of assisting developers and environmental consultants to understand the NRCA requirements for EIAs.
This was a follow up of the introduction of the Permit and Licence System in January 1997, which spoke to the new requirements for the conduct of EIAs for specific type of developments. In 2001, there was the inauguration of the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) which was a result of merging the NRCA, the Town Planning Department (TPD) and the Land Development and Utilisation Commission (LDUC).
NEPA, as the new regulatory agency has undertaken a review of the existing EIA Guidelines in an effort to update the document, to incorporate emerging global issues, and natural hazard impacts as well as to create a more user friendly and practical set of guidelines for developers and consultants. Findings & Analysis In accordance to the National Environment & Planning Agency (NEPA), an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) involves the process of identifying, predicting and evaluating potential environmental impacts of development proposals.
The term describes a technique and a process by which information about the interaction between a proposed development project and the environment is collected, analysed, and interpreted to produce a report on potential impacts and to provide the basis for sound decision-making. The results of the study are taken into account by the Regulatory Authority in the determination of whether the proposed development should be allowed, and under what conditions. When applying for a permit or licence for a development, an EIA may be required, which is determined by the screening of the application and the conducting of relevant site visits.
Sections 9 & 10 of the NRCA Act (1991) gave the authority the power to request that an environmental impact assessment be conducted as part of a permit application. The act also gave the authority the power to request that the applicant furnish documents or other information as it thinks fit. The criteria for requesting this information may include emergency, the level of technology employed in the operation of the project, and the likely adverse impacts to be expected from the project.
The purpose of the EIA is to aid in decision making, help in the formulation of development actions, promote sustainable development, meet legislative requirements, and assist countries in conforming with international environmental standards. With this in mind, the EIA process in Jamaica was developed to include: * Project screening * Scoping * Consideration of alternatives * Description of the project * Identification of key impacts * Prediction of impacts * Evaluation and assessment of significance * Mitigation * Public consultant and participation * Report presentation * Review Decision making * Post decision monitoring * Auditing The report should contain an introduction explaining the need for, and context of the project. This document should have the following basic contents, unless specified otherwise in the Terms of Reference. * Executive Summary * Policy, Legal and Administrative Framework * Description of the Existing Environment * Description of the Proposed Project in detail * Identification and Assessment of Potential Environmental Impacts * Physical * Natural Hazard Risk * Biological * Human/Social * Cumulative Impacts * Positive Impacts Public Involvement * Recommended Mitigation Measures * Identification and Analysis of Alternatives * Environmental Management of the Project * Environmental Quality Objectives * Training * Draft Outline Monitoring Programme * List of References * Appendices including: * Reference documents * Photographs/ maps * Data Tables * Terms of Reference (TOR) * Composition of the consulting team * Notes of Public Consultation sessions Copies of the TORs and EIAs should be made available at local institutions for example: libraries, post offices and police stations and NEPA’s website.
In addition, a notice should be published in the media at least three (3) weeks prior to the public presentation. These presentations are held to obtain comments on the proposed development. Comments must be submitted in writing to NEPA within thirty (30) days of the presentation, some of which are worded as conditions of the permit and feedback is provided to them. In the review process for the EIA, the report is circulated to different agencies and stakeholders as necessary after which the comments on the EIA report are submitted to NEPA.
NEPA then collates the comments and the applicant is informed accordingly to respond to any query or concern in the form of an addendum to the EIA. This addendum is then circulated to the same agencies who will then submit comments on the addendum. NEPA will again collate comments and the valid ones are included in the submission to the review committees, after which the EIA process feeds into the permit application process. The EIA guidelines have been reviewed by NEPA in an effort to update the document, incorporate emerging global issues and create a more user friendly and practical set of guidelines for developers and consultants.
This means that the original set of EIA guidelines established by NRCA in 1997, now somewhat differs from that of NEPA. Due to the fact that NEPA is an incorporation of NRCA, TPD and LDUC, the general principles and process for conducting an EIA in Jamaica have not been significantly altered, but rather to an narrow extent to cope with the emerging society and environment. The NRCA process in the review of EIAs for permit granting, has been reviewed by NEPA, as much has been learned through the permit and licence application process, as well as through the EIAs that have been conducted and submitted to the NRCA over the years.
This resulted in minor changes which includes, the addition of other important steps that the applicant must follow through to be granted a development permit in accordance to the guidelines of NEPA. The application now goes through a more rigorous process, before the decision is made on whether a development is to be granted approval or not. Conclusion An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a comprehensive process of evaluating the environmental impacts of a development and its alternatives, including the preparation of a written report on the findings of that evaluation, and using the findings in publicly accountable decision making.
The process and guidelines for conducting EIAs in Jamaica has undergone historical developments and reviews since their establishment by the NRCA in 1997. In this regard, NEPA has sought to enhance the environmental impact assessment process and guidelines for conducting such, to meet the national mandate of balancing economic development programmes and projects with environment, economic development, and social justice. Case Study Four case will be Highlighted that could be considered to be ‘high profile’ and/or controversial development cases in Jamaica, over the years, subjected to EIAs in Jamaica.
The location, background, development details and nature of the case will be discussed along with an evaluation of its impact on today’s society. The cases that will be discussed will be: * The Palisadoes Rehabilitation project * Grand Bahia Principe Hotel * Falmouth Cruise Ship Pier * Long Mountain Housing Development The Palisadoes Road Rehabillitation Project Location This google earth image shows an aerial view of the palisadoes strip of road that was rehabilitated.
Located in the Parish of Kingston the Palisadoes strip is part of the Palisadoes/Port Royal Protected Area, declared under Jamaican law in 1998. It is also a wetland of international importance under the Ramsar convention. It contains the main road to the Norman Manley International Airport, to the town of Port Royal, and many important natural resources – sand dunes, wetlands, coral reefs, sea grass beds. Background and Development Summary The strip was damaged by a series of storms and a decision was taken to protect the very narrow part of the strip in 2006/2007.
A project was done by Cuban Engineers to build 310 metres of revetment, dredge sand from an inshore source and replenish the sand dunes and this was the subject of an EIA and a public meeting in 2007. The National Works Agency (NWA) was burdened with the responsibility of carrying out this rehabilitative work. They had applied for an environmental permit as requested by NEPA for works of this scope and magnitude which was granted. The image shows the palisadoes strip under construction.
In 2010, there was an announcement that this project was going to be expanded to include a four lane highway of 4 km, two seawalls on both sides of the Palisadoes strip and removal of mangroves on the harbour side. This was decided upon damages observed to the dunes and roadways caused by Hurricane Gustav and as a result, a revised study was conducted of the proposed works. A new design was presented to NEPA along with a new application for beach licenses. The Scope of the work to be done was different from the initial stage.
A new EIA was not conducted as NEPA determined that the new design was within the footprint of the previously prepared EIA. Also there was no new public presentation. A public presentation is a requirement of an EIA under the NRCAA. Beach licenses were given by NEPA for the sea walls and the coastal reclamation works, an environmental permit for the wetland modification (harbour side) and a permit for storage of petroleum. Subsequently, the public was told that the road would not be four lanes, but two lanes, with two shoulders.
The project was projected to cost US$65 million which would be financed through the China Exim Bank and the work would be undertaken by the China Harbour Engineering Company. The image shows boulders been put in place during the rehabilitation of the Palisadoes main road. Controversy Since the start of preparatory works by the National Works Agency (NWA) in 2010, the project has been a source of controversy as ‘green’ lobbyists contend it holds negative environmental implications for the Palisadoes-Port Royal Protected Area where the work is being done.
The Jamaica Environmental Trust (JET) which is a non-profit, non-governmental organization incorporated for the purpose of conserving and protecting Jamaica’s natural environment which includes ensuring environmental issues are properly considered in development planning, claimed that among other things, the biodiversity of the area could be compromised while criticising NEPA for failing to adequately perform its regulatory functions. Following their intervention, JET filed for an application for a Judicial review by the Supreme Court in Kingston in March 2011 concerning the NEPA and the NRCA board’s approval of the project.
The JET claimed that the public was not adequately consulted regarding the project and all required permits had not been sought and granted for the project and was therefore seeking declarations from the court to that effect. They further argued that NEPA and NRCA breached their statutory duty and acted unreasonably and irrationally by allowing the construction. They pointed out that there is a prescribed list of categories that require a permit from the NRCA and there were several aspects of the project that fell within this list which meant that they would have required permits.
These permits are usually granted with conditions that require the developer to take steps to mitigate any negative impacts of that particular activity. The JET also believed that the clearing of sand dunes and construction of the four-lane road were major works that fell within the prescribed categories and as a result there would have been some regulatory control over it in accordance with what the law prescribes. JET felt that if the court ruled in favour of them it would provide some practical guidance to NEPA and NRCA about the proper procedure to be followed when permitting certain major developments.
In their defence, NEPA claimed that there was no need to consult the public on the project which was an improvement of the revetment work that was started in 2006. They felt that the new proposal fell within the footprint of the old proposal which led to the opinion that no greater environmental impact would have happened and as a result the public was not consulted. They further affirmed that there was no need for an additional EIA to be done as the area to be impacted remains the same from project to project.
After reviewing the case the judge found that NEPA had breached the legal standard for consultation and breached the legitimate expectation that all environmental information relating to the development of the Palisadoes would be disclosed to the public and JET before approval was granted. She also ruled that the beach licenses issued were sufficient to cover the work on land, particularly as a dune restoration plan had been required under the earlier project. She finally ruled that if the road does turn out to be four lanes, it would require an environmental permit, but she accepted the evidence of the CEO of NEPA that it would not be four.
The development is scheduled to be completed by the 31st November 2012. The development has already seen some success as it withstood the harsh effects that the recent passing of Hurricane Sandy had to offer. Prior to this, similar weather would have seen flooding and the deposition of debris on the Palisadoes main road which could have resulted in temporary loss of access to the Norman Manley International Airport and the town of Port Royal. Grand Bahia Principe Hotel Location
In February 2005 an Environmental Impact Assessment was executed for the proposed development of the Grand Bahia Principe Hotel to be built by Hoteles Pinero (HOJAPI), a 1,918-room resort which consisted of three hotels on 34 hectares (80 acres) of coastal land, part of 80 ha (198 ac) of tract of land at Pear Tree Bottom, just west of Runaway Bay, St. Ann. See below. This image shows an aerial view of Pear Tree Bottom before the construction of the hotel. An aerial view of the Pear Tree Bottom showing the project boundary. Background and Development Summary
The development site lies immediately north of the North Coast Highway. The project was to be carried out in three phases, each involving the construction of a hotel. Since the development exceeded twelve rooms it required a permission to develop under the 1991 Natural Resources Conservation Authority Act (NRCAA). The National Environment & Planning Agency (NEPA), which administers the NRCAA, had requested the preparation of an EIA of the project as a requirement for review of the application. The preparation of the EIA was done by Environmental Solutions Limited.
The North Coast Highway traverses the site, separating a northern coastal portion on which the three hotels will be built from a southern hilly portion, covered largely with dry limestone forest. Originally the main road between Runaway Bay and Discovery Bay ran immediately behind the shoreline until the early 1990’s when the road was diverted to run inland as part of an earlier proposed development of the site as a resort. This new road bisected a fresh water marsh located west of the site, requiring the construction of a bridge and culverts to allow passage of the existing Pear Tree River and associated waterways.
That development included the construction of stone groynes along the shoreline to create three artificial beaches. The development site was sold to HOJAPI in 2004 Controversy An Environmental permit was granted to the developers of the hotel which resulted in the commencement of the construction process. Upon 85% completion of the hotel, a stop order was given to developers based on a ruling in court made by Justice Brian Sykes on May 16 on the premise that the EIA done by Environmental Solutions Limited was flawed.
As a result the judge quashed the permit that was granted earlier, citing failure on the NEPA and NRCA to adequately consult with residents and stakeholders in the Pear Tree Bottom before granting the license. Sykes had based his decision on the absence of a marine ecology report, which explored the benefits of flora, fauna and geographical features of the area, in the EIA, done for the developers of the hotel by the Environmental Solutions Limited which was publicised before the construction began.
HOJAPI appealed this decision and for months they, NEPA and Environmentalists attended court over the issue. Whatever direction the court ruling was to take, it would definitely impact the country either economically or environmentally. If in favour of environmentalists it would mean that the jobs and income the development would bring to the nation would be lost and if in favour of HOJAPI, the environment would suffer as there would be loss of much of the existing vegetation and associated habitat.
Another important impact the decision could have had is that if the ruling was in favour of the environmentalists, it would both affect the project and send a signal to investors abroad that they cannot trust the government’s regulatory procedures. This was so because even when investors apply and get approval, and start to invest their money, they can be stopped in their tracks because government regulatory procedures are so poor that they can be successfully challenged in court.
On the other hand, if the court rules in favour of investors, it would raise serious questions about whether the future of the country is safe in terms of environmental practices. On June 23, 2006 approval was granted for continuation of the development. Sykes ruled in favour of HOJAPl noting that they were improperly served with the notice of the environmental groups’ application for a judicial review of the decision by environmental regulator, NRCA to grant the Spanish developers an environmental permit.
His decision was made in view of the perceived material hardship that would be suffered by HOJAPI, should the may 16 order be upheld, taking into account that the hotel was already 85 percent complete representing an investment of US$62 million. Although environmentalists lost the case, they declared themselves winners saying that if nothing else, Pear Tree Bottom case should serve as a wake-up call to NEPA. They claimed that they had established some very good building blocks in environmental jurisprudence and also that the regulatory authority was not acting in the best interest of the environment.
The image shows an aerial view of the completed Bahia Principe Hotel. Economic Benefits Hotels are considered an important economic component to any community. The economic impact to local and regional economies from hotel development is typically separated into four categories: direct, fiscal, indirect, and induced. Direct Impact Direct impact includes all projected revenues that will be generated from consumers at the new hotel. This will include all rooms revenues, food and beverage revenues from restaurants and banqueting, as well as other potential revenue sources such as spa or parking.
Direct impact also includes total payroll paid out to employees hired at the hotel as well as all payroll paid out to temporary construction workers who construct the hotel. Fiscal Impact Fiscal impact refers to all federal, state, and local taxes that will be collected from the development and operations of the new hotel. Taxes include all sales taxes collected in association with the hotel generated revenues, as well as all payroll related taxes collected from full-time hotel employees and temporary construction workers. Local governments will also collect new property taxes from the operation of the hotel.
Many local governments will also collect revenues through lodging taxes. Indirect Impact In addition to local governments and hotel owners/employees, contractors and suppliers to a newly developed hotel will also benefit. Indirect impact includes all jobs and income generated by businesses that supply goods and services to the hotel. Examples of businesses that will indirectly benefit from the development of a hotel include suppliers of rooms related goods (housekeeping supplies, room amenities, etc), telecommunication vendors (internet, cable, etc. , utility companies, food and beverage suppliers, and other hotel related vendors. Induced Impact Induced impact refers to economic effects generated when employees (full-time and temporary) and suppliers re-spend their wages on local consumer purchases. For example, an employee may purchase gas for their car on their way home from work. The Positive and Negative Social and Environmental Impacts Gran Bahia Principe The main impact of the construction of the hotel is an increase in tourism. Socially tourism has a great influence on the host societies.
Tourism can be both a source of international amity, peace and understanding and a destroyer and corrupter of indigenous cultures, a source of ecological destruction, an assault of people’s privacy, dignity, and authenticity. Some possible positive effects of tourism: • Developing positive attitudes towards each other • Learning about each other’s culture and customs • Reducing negative perceptions and stereotypes • Developing friendships • Developing pride, appreciation, understanding, respect, and tolerance for each other’s culture • Increasing self-esteem of hosts and tourists Psychological satisfaction with interaction Therefore, social contacts between tourists and local people may result in mutual appreciation, understanding, tolerance, awareness, learning, family bonding respect, and liking. Residents are educated about the outside world without leaving their homes, while their visitors significantly learn about a distinctive culture. Local communities are benefited through contribution by tourism to the improvement of the social infrastructure like schools, libraries, health care institutions, internet cafes, and so on.
Besides, if local culture is the base for attracting tourists to the region, it helps to preserve the local traditions and handicrafts which maybe were on the link of the extinction. On the other side tourism can increase tension, hostility, and suspicion. Claims of tourism as a vital force for peace are exaggerated. Indeed there is little evidence that tourism is drawing the world together (Robinson 1999). In this context economic and social impacts on the local community depend on how much of the incomes generated by tourists go to the host communities.
In most all-inclusive package tours more than 80% of travellers’ fees go to the airlines, hotels and other international companies, not to local businessmen and workers. On the other hand large hotel chain restaurants often import food to satisfy foreign visitors and rarely employ local staff for senior management positions, preventing local farmers and workers from reaping the benefit of their presence. Tourism has the power to affect cultural change. Successful development of a resource can lead to numerous negative impacts.
Among these are overdevelopment, assimilation, conflict, and artificial reconstruction. While presenting a culture to tourists may help preserve the culture, it can also dilute or even destroy it. The point is to promote tourism in the region so that it would both give incomes and create respect for the local tradition and culture. There are also both negative and positive impacts of tourism on the local ecology. Tourism often grows into mass-tourism. It leads to the over consumption, pollution, and lack of resources.
However, from the ecological point of view tourism is often more acceptable and preferable than any other industrial production, as it is environmentally friendlier. The problem is that it is not easy to change the traditional way of life of the local communities. It often creates pseudo conflicts. Undoubtedly in some regions or countries the alternative industries are even more harmful to the environment than tourism. Falmouth Cruise Ship Pier Image showing shoreline before the development Location
The development of a cruise ship pier at falmouth in the parish of trelawny was one that required an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) based on the scope and magnitude of the project. The site is located in Falmouth which is the capital parish of Trelawny and is situated on Jamaica’s north coast. The project involved the development of berthing facilities including dredging of the existing channel through offshore reefs as well as the development of landside facilities required to handle the volume of cruise ship passengers disembarking during the vessell’s stay in the town.
Background and Development Summary Image showing the Pier during development The terminal’s marine works encompassed the construction of a finger pier which was designed to accommodate two “megaliners” cruise ships simultaneously. This megaliner was actually the new royal caribbean oasis class cruise ship which is the largest of its class. It has an overall length of 360m, a draught of 9. 1m, a height of 65m above the waterline, a displacement of 100,000 tons and a passenger capacityof 5400-6400 (double occupancy) and a crew of 2500 persons.
The finger pier would be constructed as a supspended concrete deck supported on a foundation of vertical and raking steel pipes driven into the underlying stratum. The overall size of the pier was designed to be 350m long and 30m wide. Dredging of the existing entrance channel and harbour basin was required to accommodate the proposed vessels. Due to the volume of the material to be dredged, offshore disposal was necessary unless an alternative onshore site would be established. An EIA was carried out which included biological assessments, hydrogeology, environmental chemistry, socioeconomics, oceanography and project management.
The environmental permit was granted in 2008 for a Port and Harbour Development . There was also an environmental permit modification for clearance and reclamation of 40 hectares of wetlands. Beach licences were also granted for dredging of 4,500,000 cubic metres of material, construction of 1,300 metres of coastline revetment works and to reclaim an area of coastline using 1. 3 million cubic metres of material. Significance/Controversy of Case This case was highlighted to be of significance as a result of its controversy regarding the development of its pier.
This was a much needed development for both the parish of Trelawny and Jamaica as this would provide a catalyst for economic growth as it would offer a boost to the nation’s tourist arrivals as tourism is one of the country’s top earner. On the other hand environmentalists argue that the development would prove to be a major environmental hazard. They argued that 20 hectares of coral and seagrass cover have been damaged due to the development. They also claimed that corals form a part of the material dredged from the harbour that is being used to reclaim lands in the area.
Environmentalists also claimed that the planned relocation of over 140,000 live corals would prove to be disastrous as corals do not react well to human handling. They further mentioned that the location that corals would be located to might not be suitable for coral as it could be the reason why there was none there in the first place. Additionally environmentalist argued that their demand was not for the relocation of corals but for it not to happen at all. Environmentalist also stated that Falmouth had one of the last relatively intact and healthy reefs in Jamaica which was been destroyed.
There would also be a loss of shoreline protection which could result in flooding. NEPA who is charged with the responsibility of issuing the environmental permit in Jamaica under NRCAA downplayed these concerns, stating that they were misplaced as millions was invested in the monitoring of the relocation of corals. Jamaica now ranks as the fastest growing cruise destination in the Caribbean based on the pull of the Falmouth Pier, launched a year ago, and one key official estimates visitor-spend to surpass US$100 million (J$8. 7 billion) or 25 per cent more than earlier year’s levels.
Jamaica received its highest number of cruise visitors in four years at some 1. 14 million passengers for 2011, or one-quarter more than 2010, according to latest Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ) data. Nearly half of those visitors docked at the Falmouth Pier with one-third at Ocho Rios and the balance at Montego Bay and Port Antonio. It is evident that the Falmouth Pier has had a direct positive impact on the Nations Tourism product which explains the increase in arrivals. This means that the port is fulfilling the purpose for which it was planned and developed.
This increase in economic activity would mean that the lives of Jamaicans would be impacted positively both directly and indirectly. Long Mountain Housing development. Location The area encompassed within the red boundary represents the proposed site for the development. The Housing Agency of Jamaica Limited (HAJL) proposes to develop a 54-lot residential subdivision, located amidst Long Mountain/Karachi Road and the upscale communities of Long Mountain Country Club, Beverly Hills and Pines of Karachi , on 29. 2 acres of land, with another 193. acres left for conservation and public open space. The proposed development site is sandwiched between the Long Mountain/Karachi Road to the east, the Long Mountain Country Club to the south, the Beverly Hills community to the west and the Pines of Karachi to the north. The location is on the western flank of the Long Mountain (or Wareika Hills). Background and Development Summary . The project is a proposal of Housing Agency of Jamaica Limited (HAJ). The HAJ, as an Agency of the Government of Jamaica (GoJ), in fulfilling its mandate of providing housing solutions for the people of Jamaica.
Essentially, the Kingston Metropolitan Area (KMA) is close to its threshold for residential development due to the virtual absence of large tracts of land to meet housing demand created by natural population increase, rural-urban drift and to satisfy the general backlog. The proposed Mona Section 1, therefore, is a Government of Jamaica response to alleviating the demand for housing solutions and these fifty-one (51) residential serviced lots are among those projected to satisfy that demand. The Mona Section 1 property is the only significant vacant property west of the Pines of Karachi to Long Mountain Road.
This development will take place under the Housing Act, 1955. The Town and Country Planning Act, 1957, guides and controls development and, in essence, ensures sustainable land use, protects the land and physical environment from misuse and premature development. The Natural Resources Conservation Authority Act, 1991, addresses the management of environmental risks of development activities. This The proposed Mona Section 1 development of 60 lots on 8. 394 hectares (20. 724 acres) comprises 51 residential serviced lots with sizes ranging from
HAJ was required to conduct an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the proposed residential subdivision. This is a requirement for an Environmental Permit from the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA). In consideration of the zoning requirements, the developer proposes the development of only 8. 4 hectares (20. 7 acres) of its property, comprising primarily of residential lots of sizes ranging from 755. 6 m? to 1354. 948 m?. This effectively ensures that the rest of approximately 81 hectares (200 acres) remain for conservation and public open space.
Controversy The Long Mountain Country Club (LMCC), residents of adjoining communities and environmentalist group The Jamaica Environmental Trust (JET) all opposed the development. JET is a non-profit, non-governmental organization incorporated for the purpose of conserving and protecting Jamaica’s natural environment which includes ensuring environmental issues are properly considered in development planning. They believe that the proposed subdivision which would later house an apartment complex could have significant negative impacts on an already sensitive environment.
They argue that the development would increase the possibility of flooding and earthquakes within the area, because of the inevitable stress on the drainage system and the removal of trees and pressure on the fault lines that lie below the area. LMCC outlined that there would be greater surface flows due to an increase in paved surfaces with the potential effect of the areas down gradient of the site similar to that being experienced by the residents in and around Glenview Terrace.
Also, geological faults traverse the project area and its environs, generally constituting a seismically active area of the Wagwater Belt. Disruptions to the natural environment from site preparation and construction works may result in rock movement and instability near the proposed development. Opening of sealed fissures on the floor of the reservoir can result in vast and uncontrollable leakages. Additionally cumulative reduction in recharge amounts resulting from the proposed and prior developments will impact long-term yields of production wells that tap the local aquifer.
These include the Beverly Hills, Long mountain, Hamstead Road, and Rennock Lodge wells. These well are currently used for domestic water supply by the National Water Commission (NWC). It is expected that in excess of five million gallons per day is already abstracted from these wells with a proposed increase from the Hamstead source well for augmentation of supply to served areas. LMCC further pointed out that while performing the role of a groundwater recharge, the area effectively prevents the flooding of adjacent properties including Mona Reservoir and Mona Water Treatment Plant.
The construction activities that would result in an increase in paved surfaces and a reduction in surfaces for percolation will contribute to flooding. Approval was granted for the development by NEPA and as a result an environmental permit was issued on October 2, 2012. The construction process, however, has not started. References Jackson (2012), Jamaica now fastest growing regional cruise market retrieved on 11 November 2012 from http://jamaica-gleaner. com/gleaner/20120229/business/business5. tml Gilchrist (2007), Gran Bahia Principe hotel officially opens retrieved on 9 November 2012, from http://www. jamaicaobserver. com/news/118134_Gran-Bahia-Principe-hotel-officially-opens. Jamaica Environmental Trust (2007), Evaluation of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the Proposed Cruise ship Terminal at Falmouth, Trelawny, Jamaica. Environmental Solutions Limited (2005) Environmental Impact Assessment, Bahia Principe Hotel Resort Development, Pear Tree Bottom, St. Ann, Jamaica. Mattis and Henry (2010) A Brief Study Of The Development Of Falmouth Within The Context Of The Cruise Ship Pier
Spaulding and Thaffe (2012) Shoreline Project Saved Palisadoes From Sandy retrieved on 9 November 2012 from http://jamaica-gleaner. com/gleaner/20121106/news/news1. html EPN Consultants Ltd (2012) Environmental Impact Assesment, A proposed subdivision of land, part of Mona and Papine Estates and Goldsmith Villa, St. Andre (Called Mona Estate, Section One) Conrad Douglas and Associates: Natural Resources Conservation Authority Guidelines for the Preparation of an Environmental Impact Assessment – Draft, September 29, 1993. Davis-Mattis, Laleta.
Natural Environmental and Planning Agency Jamaica’s Commitment to the Conservation and Management of Natural Resources …Ten Years in Retrospect March 2002 Jones Williams, Margaret. Environmental Impact Assessment EM614. M. Sc. Natural Resources Management, UWI Mona 2004. Goals and Principles of Environmental Impact Assessments [Adopted by decision 14/25, of the Governing Council of UNEP, of 17 June, 1987] Chapter IV. APPENDIX Sample Public Notice (#1) Notice of Intention for Environmental Impact Assessment Study Public Comment Invited – Insert Name of Development, Parish – ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ In accordance with the Natural Resources Conservation (Permits and Licences) Regulations of the Natural Resources Conservation Authority (NRCA) Act 1991, the NRCA has exercised its right to require an environmental impact assessment (EIA) of the above-captioned development proposal before a decision to issue a Permit or Licence is made. This development is proposed by – insert name of developer – on – insert details of parcel of land – located – insert details of the project location -, as shown in the map below.
The proposal entails – insert details of development. Insert name of developer – has retained – insert name of consultant – to assist them with the conducting of the EIA study. These draft ToRs are available for public inspection at the following locations. * Insert names, address and opening hours of public library closest to the project site; * Insert the name of the consultant or developer, their address and opening hours; and * NEPA Documentation Centre, 11 Caledonia Ave. , Kingston 5, open 9-4. * NEPA Web Site
If you wish to comment on the draft ToRs for this project, please do so within 7 days of the date of the publication of this notice. Comments should be addressed to: Manager Applications Secretariat Branch Insert name of project National Environment and Planning Agency 10 Caledonia Ave. Kingston 5 Tele: (816) 754-7547 0 e-mail: [email protected] gov. jm If you do not wish to comment on the draft terms of reference, but wish to stay apprised of project developments, please contact – insert name of developer –at the above-noted address. (Add map of proposed development site here) Date of Notice: ____________________ NRCA’s