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CHAPTER FIVE

5.0

EVALUATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS

A project such as construction of the shopping mall is likely to affect the environment and
community. The objective of this section is to predict and to assess these potential impacts of the
proposed project to international standard and to recommend mitigating measures to be
incorporated into the project design.
The assessment of the issues has been conducted according to a synthesis of criteria required by
the integrated environmental management procedure defined as follows:
NATURE OF IMPACT
This is an appraisal of the type of effect the proposed activity would have on the affected
environmental component. Its description should include what is being affected and in what way.
DIRECT IMPACT
An impact that appears immediately as a result of an activity of the project. For example, the loss
of forest habitat is a direct impact of logging.
INDIRECT IMPACT
An impact that is related to the project but that arises from an activity of the project at a
secondary level. For example, building a new runway may cause indirect impacts on the local
economy of a village by increasing accessibility to other markets.
SPATIAL EXTENT
The physical and spatial size of the impact. It is a description of whether the impact would occur
on a scale described as follows:
SITE, the impact could affect the whole or measurable portion of the site. Whether it is
limited to the immediate area of the proposed project;

LOCAL, the impact could affect the extended area adjacent to the site perhaps a
neighborhood or small town. Whether it would affect environs up to 15km outside the
immediate environment;
REGIONAL, that impact could affect the area including the outlying areas of the city,
the transport routes and the adjoining towns.
NATIONAL, the impact could be as far reaching international boundaries.
DURATION, The lifetime of the impact; this is measured in the context of the life-time
of the proposed development.
SHORT Term, the impact will either disappear with mitigation or will be mitigated
through natural process in a span shorter than the construction phase.
MEDIUM Term, the impact will last for the period of the construction phase, thereafter
it will be entirely negated.
LONG Term, the impact will continue or last for the entire operational life of the
development, but will be mitigated by direct human action or by natural processes
thereafter.
PERMANENT, the only class of impact which will be non-transitory. Mitigation either
by man or natural process will not occur in such a way or in such a time span that the
impact can be considered transient.
INTENSITY,A description of whether or not the intensity (magnitude) of the impact
would be high, medium, low or negligible (no impact). An attempt will be made to
quantify the impacts on components of the affected environment will be described as
follows: Is the impact destructive, or benign? Does it destroy the impacted environment,
alter its functioning, or slightly alter it? These are rated as follows:

LOW, where the impact will not have significant influence on the environment, and this
will not be required to be significantly accommodated in the project design or
implementation; the impact alters the affected environment in such a way that natural
processes of functions are not affected in any significant way.
MODERATE, where it could have an adverse influence on the environment which
would require modification of the project design or alternative implementation schedules;
the affected environment is altered, however, function and process continue, albeit in a
modified way.
HIGH, where it could have significant influence on the environment but cannot be
mitigated or be accommodated by the project environment by introducing alternative
mitigation measures such as realignment at a particular stretch or adoption of different
design measures. Function or process of the environment is disturbed to the extent where
it temporarily or permanently ceases.
This will be a relative evaluation within the context of all the activities and the other
impacts within the framework of the project. Note that some impacts have a high
intensity and a short duration with no permanent audio effects.
PROBABILITY, This describes the likelihood of the impacts actually occurring. The
impact may occur for any length of time during the life cycle of the activity, and not at
any given time. The classes are rated as follows:
UNLIKELY, the probability of the impact occurring is very low, due to either the
circumstances, design or experience.
POSSIBLE, the impact could possibly happen, and mitigation planning should be
undertaken.

PROBABLE, it is most likely that the impact will occur at some or other stage of the
development. Plans must be drawn up before the undertaking of the activity.
DEFINITE, the impact will take place regardless of any prevention plans, and only
mitigatory actions or contingency plans can be relied on to contain the effect.
DETERMINATION OF SIGNIFICANCE
Significance is determined through a synthesis of impact characteristics or combination of
effects. Significance is an indication of the importance of the impact in terms of physical extent,
intensity and time scale, and therefore indicates the level of mitigation required.
The classes are rated as follows:
NEGLIGIBLE, the impact is not substantial and does not require any mitigatory action.
LOW, the impact is of little importance, but may require limited mitigation.
MODERATE, the impact is of importance and therefore considered to have mitigation.
Mitigation is required to reduce the negative impacts to acceptable levels or positive impacts
maximised.
HIGH, the impact is of great importance. Failure to mitigate, with the objective of reducing the
impact to acceptable levels, could render the entire development option or entire project proposal
unacceptable. Mitigation is therefore essential. Positive impacts should be enhanced as a priority.
From the baseline information assembled in the previous chapter coupled with the information
gained during the consultation stage, the expected environmental impacts can be categorised into
positive and negative impacts.
In addition, it is important to consider the duration of the impact and at what phase of the project
it occurs, i.e. impacts during the rehabilitation phase or impacts over the life of the runway

(operational phase) and whether the impacts are direct (i.e. removal of vegetation) or indirect
(increased deforestation as a result of the improved runway).
The direct impacts would be experienced mainly during the rehabilitation process, and include
effects on the physical environment, health and safety of the residents along the runway and the
construction workers during the rehabilitation phase.
The indirect impacts are primarily socio-economic and extend beyond the project
implementation. The indirect impacts include changes in economic activities and long-term
changes, such as increased land degradation due to increased settlement and development near
the runway.
Unlike the direct impacts, which occur in the immediate environment, the indirect impacts would
be felt in the adjacent regions.