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Components of the Environment

Environmental Categories and components for environmental Assessment

Environmental Categories and components for environmental Assessment

Leopold Interaction Matrix

The environment is divided into the following major categories: physical and chemical characteristics, biological conditions, cultural factors. and ecological relationships. Figure 32 itemizes 78 environmental factors used in the environmental evaluation system prepared for water resource projects by Battelle Columbus. In this method the environment is divided into ecology. environmental pollution, aesthetics, and human interest. It should be noted that these two methods discussed here have very little emphasis on the socioeconomic environment.

The four major components of the environment are broken down into subdivisions in the next figure. A description of each subdivision and the parameters to consider in the environmental assessment follow. Further, the types of analysis that could be made are include

Components of the Environment

The system presented for environmental analysts divides the human environment into four major categories.21 The first two are physical and biological, and the latter consider social and cultural factors.

1. Physical/chemical factors describe the physical and chemical effects of air, water and land pollution. Changes in this sector of the environment usually demonstrate their impacts on the other environmental sectors.

2 Ecological factors describe the flora and fauna of the environment and the impacts made on them. Each species and its habitat is considered as to population, growth rate, interactions with its own species, and interactions with other species and life cycles.

3. Aesthetic factors describe the land use impacts of the proposed project and other sensory effects, prim3Iily visual .

4. Social factors describe the human life quality, health and welfare.

Leopold matrix – Physical and Chemical Properties • A Earth. • B Water. – 1
Leopold matrix – Physical and
Chemical Properties
• A Earth.
• B Water.
– 1 Mineral resourceS.
– 1 Surface.
– 2 Construction material.
– 2 Ocean.
– 3 Soils.
– 3 Underground.
– 4 Land form.
– 4 Quality.
– S Force fields and
– S Temperature.
background radiation.
– 6 Recharge.
– 6 Unique physical
– 7 Snow, ice, and


Leopold matrix – Physical and Chemical Properties • C Atmosphere. • D . Processes. –
Leopold matrix – Physical and
Chemical Properties
• C Atmosphere.
• D . Processes.
– 1 Quality (gases,
– 1 Floods.
– 2 Erosion .
– 2 Climate (micro, macro).
– . 3 Deposition
– 3 Temperature.
– 4 Solution.
– S Sorption (ion exchange,
– 6 Compaction and setting.
– 7 Stability (slides, slumps).
– 8 Stress‐ strain
– 9 Air movements
Leopold Interaction Matrix – Cultural Factors • A Land use. • B Recreation. – 1
Leopold Interaction Matrix – Cultural
• A Land use.
• B Recreation.
– 1 Wilderness and open
– 1 Hunting
– 2 Fishing
– 2 Wetlands.
– 3 Boating
– 3 Forestr y.
– 4 Swimming
– 4 Grazing.
– 5 Camping and hiking
– 5 Agriculture.
– 6. Picnicking
– 6 Residential.
– 7. Resorts
– 7 Commercial.
– 8 Industrial.
– 9 Mining and quarrying

Leopold Interaction Matrix – Cultural Factors

E Constructed facilities and activities.

1 Structures.

2 Transportation network (movement;access).

3 Utility networks.

4 Waste disposal.

S Barriers.

6 Corridors.

Leopold matrix – Biological Conditions • A Flora • B ∙Fauna. – 1. Trees –
Leopold matrix – Biological Conditions
• A Flora
• B ∙Fauna.
– 1. Trees
– 1 Birds.
– 2 Shrubs
– 2 Land animals including
– 3 Grass
– 3 Fish and shellfish .
– 4 Crops
– 4 Benthic organisms.
– 5 Microflora
– 5 Insects.
– 6 Aquatic plants
– 6 Microfauna.
– 7 Endangered species
– 7 Endangered spec;:ies.
– 8 Barriers
– 8 Barriers.
– 9 Corridors
– 9 Corridors.
Leopold Interaction Matrix – Cultural Factors • C Aesthetics and human • D Cultural status.
Leopold Interaction Matrix – Cultural
• C Aesthetics and human
• D Cultural status.
– 1 Cultural patterns (life‐ style).
– 1 Scenic views and vistas.
– 2 Health and safety.
– 2 Wilderness qualities.
– 3 Employment.
– 3 Open space qualities.
– 4 Population density.
– 4 Landscape desi gn.
– S Unique physical features.
– 6 Parks and reserves.
– 7 Monuments.
– 8 Rare and unique species or
– 9 Historical or archeological
sites and objects_
– 10 Presence of

Leopold Interaction Matrix – Ecological Relationships

A Salinization of water resources.

B Eutrophication

C Disease insect vectors.

D Food chains.

E .Salinlzation of surficial material.

F Brush encroachment.

G Other



4/13/2011 ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF THE PROPOSED ACTION • In this section of the EIS the impacts
4/13/2011 ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF THE PROPOSED ACTION • In this section of the EIS the impacts

In this section of the EIS the impacts of the proposed project on the environment are discussed in detail. These impacts are described in reIation to physical, biological and human environment. The followin g outlines the procedures that may be followed in the preparation of this portion of the EIS. First the impacts are identified. Evaluation and assessment of their interactions follow, and then comparisons are made with the control environment should no action take place.

Identification of Impacts

The impacts on the environment of a project are determined through an examination of its process operations, its raw material requirements, its transportation requirements, and its site re q uirements. Obviousl y different projects will demand greater detail in different areas. A refinery or chemical plant would necessitate a large section on process impacts while a damming reservoir project would require detailed site impact analysis. The following figure illustrates the analysis operation necessary for final impact identification.

Environmental costs and benefits

Environmental costs and benefits


4/13/2011 • Pollution prevention is the use of materials, processes, ‐ or practices that reduce or

Pollution prevention is the use of materials, processes, or practices that reduce or eliminate the creation of pollutants or wastes at the source . It includes p ractices that reduce the use of hazardous and nonhazardous materials, energy, water, or other resources as well as those that protect natural resources through conservation or more efficient use.


In the case of pollution prevention national environmental goals coincide with industry’s economic interests Businesses have strong incentives to reduce the toxicity and sheer volume of the waste they generate. A comp any with an effective, on goin g pollution prevention plan may well be the lowest cost producer and have a significant competitive edge. The cost per unit produced will decrease as pollution prevention measures lower liability risk and operating costs. The company's public image will also be



Pollution Prevention Program

examination of the operations at a facility with the goal of minimizing all types of waste products. An effective pollution prevention program will:

reduce risk of criminal and civil liability

reduce operating costs

improve employee morale and participation

enhance company's image in the community

protect public health and the environment

Reduced Risk of Liability

You will decrease your risk of both civil and criminal liability by reducing the volume and the potential toxicity of the vapor, liquid, and solid discharges you generate . You should look at all types of waste, not just those that are currently defined as hazardous. Since toxicity definitions and regulations change, reducing the volume of wastes in all categories is a sound longterm management policy .


Environmental regulations at the federal and state levels require that facilities document the pollution prevention and recycling measures they em p loy for wastes defined as hazardous. companies that produce excessive waste risk heavy fines, and their managers may be subject to fines and imprisonment if potential pollutants are mismanaged.

Reduced Operating Costs

An effective pollution prevention program can yield cost saving that will more than offset program development and implementation costs. Cost reductions may be immediate savings that a pp ear directly on the balance sheet or anticipated savings based

1 avoiding potential future costs. Cost' savings are particularly noticeable when the costs resulting from the treatment, storage, or disposal of wastes are allocated to the production unit, product, or service that produces the waste.

Waste management and disposal costs are an obvious and easily measured potential savings to be realized from pollution prevention. Federal and state regulations mandate special in plant handling procedu res and specific treatment and disposal methods toxic wastes. The costs of complying with these requirements reporting on waste disposition are direct costs to businesses. There are also indirect costs, such as higher taxes for such public

Civil liability is increased by generating hazardous waste and there potential pollutants. Waste handling affects public health and property values in the communities surrounding p roduction and disp osal sites. Even materials not currently covered by hazardous waste regulations may present a risk of civil litigation in the future. Workers compensation costs and risks are directly related to the volume of hazardous materials produced. Again, it is unwise to ) confine your attention to those materials specifically defined as hazardous.

Materials costs can be reduced by adopting production and packaging procedures that consume fewer resources, thereby create less waste . As wastes are reduced, the p ercenta ge of raw materials converted to finished products increases, with a proportional decrease in materials costs

services as landfill management. The current trends for these costs to continue to increase at the same or higher rates. Some of these cost savings are summarized


Waste management costs will decrease as pollution prevention measures are implemented:

Reduced manpower and equipment requirements for onsite pollution control and tre.atment

Less waste storage space, freeing more space for production

Less pretreatment and packaging prior to disposal

Smaller quantities treated, with possible shift from treatment,

storage, and disposal (TSD) facility to nonTSD status

Less need to transport for disposal

Lower waste production taxes

Reduced paperwork and recordkeeping requirements, e.g., less Toxic Release

Inventory (TRI) reporting when TRIlisted chemicals are eliminated or reduced.

Energy costs will decrease as pollution prevention measures are implemented in various production lines: In addition, energy used to operate the overall facilit y can be reduced by doing a thorough assessment of how various operations interact

Improve company image

As the quality of the environment comes an issue of greater importance to society, your company's policy and practices for controlling waste increasin g l y influence the attitudes of your employees and of the community at large.

Production costs can be .reduced through a pollution prevention assessment. When a multidisciplinary group examines production processes from a fresh perspective, opportunities for increasin g efficienc y are likely to surface that might not otherwise have been noticed. Production scheduling, material handling, inventory control, and equipment maintenance are all areas that can be optimized to reduce the production of waste of all types and also control the costs of production.

Facility cleanup costs may result from a need to comply with future regulations or to prepare a production facility or off site waste stora ge or dis p osal site for sale . These future costs can be minimized by acting now to reduce the amount of wastes of all types that you generate.

Employees are likely to feel more positive toward their company when they believe that management is committed to providing a safe work environment and is actin g as a responsible member


Of the community by participating in pollution prevention activities, employees can interact positively with each other and with mana gement Hel p in g to im p lement and maintain a pollution prevention program should increase their sense of identity with company goals. This positive atmosphere helps to retain a competitive workforce and to attract high quality new employees

Public Health and environmental benefits

Reducing production wastes provides upstream benefits be cause it reduces ecological damage due to raw material extraction and refinin g operations . Subsequent benefits are the reduced risk of emissions during the production process and during recycling, abatement, and disposal operations.

What is pollution Prevention

Pollution prevention is the maximum feasible reduction of all wastes generated at production sites. It involves the judicious use of resources through source reduction, energy efficiency, reuse of materials during p roduction , and reduced water consum ption.

There are two general methods of source reduction that can be in a pollution prevention program product changes and process changes. They reduce the volume and toxicity of product wastes and of end products during their life cycle and at disposal

Community attitudes will be more positive toward companies that operate and publicize a thorough pollution prevention program. Most communities actively resist the siting of new waste disposal facilities. in their areas. In addition, they are becoming ore conscious of t h e monetary costs of treatment an d disposal. Creating environmentally compatible products and avoiding excessive consumption and discharge of material and energy resources, other than concentrating solely on treatment and disposal, will greatJy enhance your company's image within your community and with potential customers

The environmental management hierarachy

The pollution prevention act of 1990 reinforces the US Environmental Management Options Hierarchy; The highest priorities are assigned to preventing pollution through source reduction and reuse , or closed loop recyclin g. Preventing or recycling at the source eliminates the need for site recycling or treatment and disposal. Elimination of pollutant or near the source is typically less expensive than collecting, treating, and disposing of wastes. It also presents much less risk to your workers, the community. and the environment.

Product changes in the composition or use of the intermediate or end products are performed by the manufacturer with the purpose of reducing waste from manufacture . use. or ultimate disposal of the products


4/13/2011 • Source Reduction Models • The following process changes are pollution prevention measures
• Source Reduction Models
• Source

The following process changes are pollution prevention measures because they reduce the amount of waste created during production.

Examples of input material changes:

Stop using heavy metal pigment

Use a less hazardous or toxic solvent for cleanin g or as coating.

Purchase raw materials that are free of trace quantities of hazardous or toxic impurities.

• Environmental Management options Hierarchy

Environmental Management options Hierarchy

Process changes are concerned with how the product is made. They include input material changes, technology changes, and improved operating p ractices . All such changes reduce worker exposure to pollutants during the manufacturing process. Typical improved operating practices can be implemented more quickly at less expense than input material and technology changes

Examples of technology changes:

Redesign equipment and piping to reduce the volume of material contained. cutting losses during batch or color changes or when equipment is drained for maintenance or cleaning.

Change to mechanical stripping/cleaning devices to avoid solvent use.

Change to a powder coating system.

Install a hardpiped vapor recovery system to capture and return vaporous emissions.

Use more efficient motors.

Install speed control on pump motor.; to reduce energy consumption.


Examples of improved operating practices:

Train operators.

Cover solvent tanks when not in use.

Segregate waste streams to avoid crosscontaminating hazardous and nonhazardous materials.

Improve control of operating conditions (e.g., flow rate, temperature, pressure, residence time, stoichiometry.

Improve maintenance scheduling, record keeping, or procedures

to increase efficiency.

Optimize purchasing and inventory maintenance methods for

input materials. Purc hasing in quantity can reduce costs and packaging material if care is taken to ensure that materials do not exceed their shelf life. Reevaluate shelf life characteristics to avoid unnecessary disposal of stable items.

Stop leaks, drips, and spills.

Tum. off electrical equipment such as lights and copiers when not in use.

Place equipment so as to minimize spills and losses during transport of parts or materials.

Use drip pans and splash guards.

The following are not pollution prevention measures

Offsite Recycling

Off site recycli ng ( eg so l vent recovery central distillation facility) is an excellent waste management option. However it does create pollution during transport and during the recycling procedures

Concentrating hazardous or toxic chemicals to reduce volume

Volume reduction operations such as dewatering are useful treatment approaches but they do not prevent the creation of p ollution for exam ple pressure filtration and drying of a heavy metal waste sludge prior to disposal decreases the sludge water content and waste volume but it does not increase the number of heavy metal molecules in the sludge.


There are a number of pollution control measures that are applied only after wastes are generated. They are, therefore, not correctl y cate gorized as p ollution prevention . Next slide provides some examples of procedures that are waste handling, not pollution prevention, measures.

Waste treatment

Waste treatment involves changing the form or composition of a waste stream through controlled reactions to reduce or eliminate the amount of p ollutant . Exam p les include detoxification, incineration decomposition, stabilization and solidification or encapulation

Diluting the constituents to reduce hazard or toxicity

Dilution is applied to the waste stream after generation and does not reduce the absolute amount of hazardous constituents entering the environment


Transferring hazardous or toxic materials from one environmental medium to another

Many waste management treatment and control practices used to date have simply collected pollutants and moved them from one environmental medium to another (air, water or land)

Eg. Scrubbing to remove sulphur compounds from off gas process.

Transferring hazardous wastes to another environmental form is not pollution prevention. Many waste management policies have sim p l y collected p ollutants and moved them from one environmental medium to another

Off site treatment is vastly preferable to other forms of waste handling because it helps to preserve raw materials and reduces the amount of material that will require disposal. However compared, to closed loop recycling (or reuse) performed at the production there is likely to be more residual wastes that will require disposal. Further waste transportation and the recycling process carry risks of worker exposureand of release into the environment