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Construction and Environment Management - Question Bank (With Answers)

Q.1.a: What is Construction Environment Management Plan (CEMP)? (10 Marks)

Definition: A CEMP describes how activities undertaken during the construction phase of
development will be managed to avoid or mitigate negative environmental impacts on site
and how those environmental management requirements will be implemented.

The CEMP is a site-specific plan developed to ensure that appropriate environmental

management practices are followed during the construction phase of a project.

When undertaking an assessment of a development application or major development, the

EPA or a relevant authority may request a CEMP be provided as part of that assessment, or
may recommend or impose a condition requiring a CEMP be prepared prior to construction

It is advisable that the CEMP be prepared by a suitably qualified and experienced consultant,
particularly when the development is large scale with complex issues.

The CEMP should include the following general information about the project:
● A description of the site location and the receiving environment, including the location
of sensitive receivers.
● A description of the project construction works to be undertaken, including timeframes
and construction hours.
● Identification and analysis of potential environmental impacts, including environmental
hazards and risks, proposed mitigation measures and any residual risks.
● Identification and description of the management measures to be implemented to
mitigate linked source−receptor−exposure pathways.
● Identification of a person or persons with responsibility for implementing the CEMP.
○ The responsible person may be the owner, occupier, contractor or head
contractor for the site.
○ The responsible person or persons should have authority to call for immediate
cessation of works if an issue arises.
○ The responsible person or persons should have responsibility for managing
communications and complaints.
● Identification of appropriate reporting and verification measures.
● Description of appropriate contingencies to be implemented, if management measures
are identified as being ineffective and/or result in environmental nuisance.

The basic scope of CEMP should consider the following subject areas as applicable to the
individual project, such as:
● Air quality
● Water quality and drainage
● Noise and vibration

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● Geology and soils
● Landscape and visual impact
● Nature conservation
● Archeology and cultural heritage
● People and communities
● Transportation
● Materials.

Q.1.b: Explain in detail the purpose of Construction Environment Management Plan

(CEMP) (10 Marks)
CEMP is generally prepared for projects:
● Needing EIA screening or clearance.
● Significant industrial facilities that e.g. contain manufacturing processes.
● Larger residential and commercial development projects.
● Any other project deemed by Authority as presenting an environmental risk warranting

Based on the need of CEMP as defined above the purpose of a CEMP can be:
● Provide effective, site-specific procedures and mitigation measures to monitor and
control environmental impacts throughout the construction phase of the project.
● Ensure that construction activities so far as is practical do not adversely impact
amenity, traffic or the environment in the surrounding area.
● Highlighting stakeholder requirements
● Ensuring the development is in compliance with the current environmental legislation.
● Outlining the Environment Management Systems as per ISO standards and other
applicable standards.
● Detailing the mitigation committed to within the Environmental Impact Report/
Statement and how it is implemented at site.

Q.2.a: Why is Environmental awareness and training important? (10 marks)

The construction industry has a major impact on the environment, so the responsibility lies
with site managers to create conditions conducive for minimal impact on the environment.
The fact remains that a great deal of our environmental impact is governed by what happens
on site. All the design standards and policies in the world have limited effect if the people
supervising onsite works lack the awareness of environmental risks or the understanding of
practical measures that should be taken to limit them.

Importance of Awareness and Training:

● To gain a basic understanding of the principles of environmental legislation.
● To grasp the concept of environmental aspects and impacts in relation to construction
● To be able to segregate waste streams.

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● Gain an awareness of potential environmental incidents and assist in responding to
● Legal and regulatory requirements to protect the environment.
● Investment towards cost savings as it helps the organisation with its environmental
● To fulfill Corporate Social Responsibility by focusing on community and environment.
● Ensuring compliance with Environmental Protection and regulations Act at an
organisational level.

Q.2.b: What are the methods to stop Air and Water pollution? (10 marks)
Air Pollution: Air pollution is one the biggest polluters within a construction site. Construction
activities that contribute to air pollution include: land clearing, operation of diesel engines,
demolition, burning, and working with toxic materials. The 3 most common cause of air
pollution includes:
● Dust: Creation and presence of Dust (particulate matter less than 10 microns)
● Fuel Burning: Emission of Gases (Burning of Diesel causing release of Soot,
sulphates and silicates into the air)
● Presence of large amount of smoke (Burning of substances at site releases smoke,
sometimes toxic in nature)

Mitigative Steps for Air Pollution:

● Not permitting burning any substance on site, imposing fines on contractors for
burning anything at site.
● Using low sulphur diesel in all equipment, machinery and engines.
● Improve existing equipments with latest particle filters and catalytic converters.
● Using of dust screens that enclose the building under construction and a solid barrier
around the site.
● Enclosing the material hoist and debris chute with a dust screen.
● Spraying water onto debris before it goes down a debris chute.
● Spraying water on facade/ surface when grinding work is performed.
● Equipping a vacuum cleaner to the equipment during grinding.
● Covering up materials during transit or when piles of material at site.

Water Pollution: Contamination of water, waterways or water disposal channels due to the
construction activities directly or indirectly causes water pollution.
Major causes of water pollution are:
● Surface runoff water. (dirt, debris, diesel, oil, paints, chemicals getting into local
● Wastewater from construction sites.
● Depositing of construction materials into waterways. (Impacting wildlife in waterways)
● Soil erosion and silt causing sedimentation in waterways.
● Underground sewers or drains getting blocked due to building materials deposition.

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Mitigative Steps for Water Pollution:
● Minimize the land disturbance, leaving as much vegetation as possible during the
excavation process.
● Covering up all drains on a construction site.
● Using non-toxic chemicals and tightly cover and monitor toxic substances when they
have to be used.
● Covering building materials so that risk of them being washed away during rains is
● Collecting and treating wastewater before it is discharged as effluent, where clean
water can be discharged and sediment sludge can be collected and disposed of

Q.3.a: What are the Environmental problems that influence sustainable development?
(10 marks)
The main environmental problems in India relate to ‘Air’ and ‘Water’ pollution, particularly in
metropolitan cities and Industrial zones.

The ‘environment’ refers to the totality of resources and the total planetary inheritance we
have received. The environment performs four crucial functions:
● Supplying Resources: The environment contains both renewable and non-renewable
resources. While the former are reusable and do not get depleted soon;
non-renewable resources come with the fear of depletion.
● Assimilating Waste: Economic activities generate waste which the environment
absorbs through natural process.
● Sustenance of Life: The environment comprises abiotic components that aid the
living of biotic components.
● Aesthetic Value: The environment adds to the aesthetic value with natural vegetation
and flowing waters.

‘Sustainable development’ is a process that provides for the present generation without
compromising on the needs of future generations.
Sustainable development is lately also associated with improving living standards, poverty
alleviation, nutritional improvements, minimising social and cultural instability and resource

Major Environmental Concerns/ Problems:

A country’s environmental problems vary with its stage of development; structure of its
economy; production technologies in use and its environmental policies.
● Soil Degradation: Erosion by water and wind is the most important factor to soil
erosion with the other factors like water-logging, salivation, etc adding to degradation.
Soil erosion in hilly areas causes landslides, floods and deforestation.

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● Deforestation: Forest is a renewable resource and contributes substantially to the
economic development. Forests play an important role in enhancing the quality of the
environment by maintaining ecological balance.
● Biodiversity: Biodiversity is one of the major environmental concerns in India. The
major cause for the loss of biological diversity has been the depletion of vegetative
cover in order to expand agriculture.
● Pollution: The main factors contributing to urban air quality deterioration are growing
industrialisation and increasing vehicular pollution. Coastal and marine pollution are
most contributing factors to environment. An important impact of climate change and
global warming may be a rise in sea-level.

Environmental problems like air pollution, water pollution, soil degradation, deforestation, loss
of biodiversity etc, are caused by diverse factors such as:
● Population growth
● Poverty
● Industrialisation
● Agriculture development
● Transport development
● Urbanisation
● Market failures, etc.

Q.3.b: Explain 3R with respect to sustainable development. (10 marks)

Sustainable Development: It is the wise management of resources in order to meet current
basic human needs while taking steps to preserve for the needs of future generations.

Environmental Sustainability: It refers to responsible action taken by the industry/

businesses and individuals to sustain or keep the environment in good shape and to prevent
any type of reduction in the quality of the environment or depletion of natural resources.
These includes:
● Conservation of energy​: Conventional source of energy are not renewable. They are
also major cause of emitting greenhouse gases like CO​2 leading to global warming.
Therefore, fossil fuels must be used more efficiently.
● Conservation of Water​: Potable water is very limited. For sustainable growth
conserving of water (specifically potable water) is essential.
● Conservation of biological resources​: Lack of vegetation will cause soil erosion and
disturbance in biodiversity which will affect the larger ecological system.

The 3 R’s of Sustainability Practice: Effective pollution control and waste management
leads to Sustainable development. The “3 R’s” of sustainability are ​Reduce​, ​Reuse and
Recycle​. In modern practice we also have a fourth ‘R’ of ​Re-Think​, this aspect looks at
alternate consumption methods to completely avoid the current form of waste/ pollution.


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● This is the most preferred form of pollution control and waste management.
● Advocates reduction in consumption itself. Consume only what is needed.
● Reduction reduces/ minimises the use of new resources.
● A key part of waste "reduction" is "conservation"

● Reusing of materials reduces the need for new resources.
● Increase the product life cycle by making them multi usable thereby conserving energy
by avoiding production of new material.
● Waste disposal time is offsetted till the product reaches its end of life cycle. Therefore,
waste disposal is reduced.

● Converting waste materials into new products, changing them from their original form
by physical and chemical processes.
● Used materials can be recycled to create new usable objects.
● Although recycling uses energy, it helps to prevent new resources from being used
and old materials from entering the waste stream.

Following of 3R’s in construction and environmental planning can:

● Significantly reduce the waste in landfills and reduce environmental pollution.
● If the methods are adopted efficiently, it also helps in cost benefit to the organisation
by saving on new materials
● Saving on waste management costs
● Saving on landfill costs.
● As public awareness in these matters increases, It also helps the developer/
contractor/ owner to gain recognition and goodwill in the society.

Q.4.a: Explain the green building concept in India. (10 marks)

A green Building uses less energy, water and other natural resources creates less waste &
GreenHouse Gases and is healthy for people, while living or working inside as compared to a
standard Building. Another meaning of Green Structure is clean environment, water and
healthy living. Building Green is not about a little more efficiency. It is about creating buildings
that optimize on the local ecology, use of local materials and most importantly they are built
to cut power, water and material requirements.

Buildings are a major energy consuming sector in the economy. About 35 to 40% of total
energy is used by buildings during construction. The major consumption of Energy in
buildings is during construction and later in lighting or air-conditioning systems. This
consumption must be minimized. Possibly, this should be limited to about 80-100 watts per

Construction & Environment Management Page 6 of 25 By: Venu Nataraj, 2nd Sem, M.Arch (CPM)
Building Industry is producing second largest amount of Demolition Waste and Greenhouse
Gases (almost 40%). Buildings have major environmental impacts over their entire life cycle.
Resources such as ground cover, forests, water, and energy are depleted to construct and
operate buildings. Resource-intensive materials provide the building envelope and
landscaping add beauty to it – in turn using up water and pesticides to maintain it.
Energy-consuming systems for lighting, space conditioning and water heating provide
comfort to its occupants. Hi-tech controls add intelligence to ‘inanimate' buildings so that they
can respond to varying conditions, and intelligently monitor and control resource use,
security, and usage of fire systems etc. in the building. Water is another vital resource for the
occupants, which gets consumed continuously during building construction and operation.
Several building processes and occupant function generate large amounts of waste. These
all are polluting the environment and increasing Greenhouse Gases.

Green Building Concept: To have Green Building Concept, we should look after the
● Optimum use of Energy or power
● Water conservation
● Solid and Water Waste management, its treatment and reuse
● Energy efficient transport systems
● Efficient Building System Planning etc.

Building Planning should minimize the use of building materials and optimize construction
practices and sinks by bio-climatic architectural practices; use minimum energy to power
itself for the use of equipment and lighting and air-conditioning and lastly maximize the use of
renewable sources of energy. It should also use efficiently waste and water management
practices; and provides comfortable and hygienic indoor working conditions. It is evolved
through a design process that requires all concerned –the architect and landscape designer
and the air conditioning, electrical, plumbing and energy consultants – to work as a team to
address all aspects of building including system planning, design, construction and operation.
Thus, enhance the positive impacts on the environment.

Q.4.b: What are the components of green building? (10 marks)

Building construction and its upkeep for livable conditions requires huge energy in lighting,
air-conditioning, operation of appliances etc. Green Building i.e. energy efficient building is
the one which can reduce energy consumption by at least 40% as compared to conventional
building. The cost of constructing energy efficient building is estimated to be 15 – 20% higher
as compared to conventional building without energy efficiency. However, this is more than
compensated over the period of time i.e during life cycle cost and operation & living.

Integrating green building materials into building projects can help reduce the environmental
impacts associated with the extraction, transport, processing, fabrication, installation, reuse,
recycling, and disposal of these building industry source materials.

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Green building materials are composed of renewable, rather than nonrenewable resources
and are environmentally responsible because impacts are considered over the life cycle

Depending upon project-specific goals, an assessment of green materials may involve an

evaluation of one or more of the following parameters:
● Resource efficiency
● Energy efficiency
● Affordability
● Possible Recycling of Material and Waste generation
● Water conservation
● Effective Indoor air quality

Resource Efficiency: It can be accomplished by utilizing materials that meet the following
● Resource efficient manufacturing process: Products manufactured with
resource-efficient processes including reducing energy consumption, minimizing waste
(recycled, recyclable and or source reduced product packaging) and thus reducing
greenhouse gases.
● Local availability: Building materials, components and systems found locally or
regionally will save energy and resources in transportation to the project site.
● Salvaged, refurbished, or remanufactured: It avoids the material from disposal and
renovating, repairing, restoring, or generally improving the appearance, performance,
quality, functionality or value of a product.
● Durable: Materials that are longer lasting or are comparable to conventional products
with long life expectancy.

Energy Efficiency: It can be maximized by utilizing materials and systems that meet the
various criteria that help reduce energy consumption in buildings and facilities such as BEE
rating (Bureau of Energy Efficiency)

Affordability: It can be considered as the cost for the building product when life-cycle costs
are comparable to conventional materials or as a whole it is within a project-defined
percentage of the overall budget.

Possibility of Recycling of Material and resultant Waste Generation: It should satisfy the
● Recyclable Content: ​Products with identifiable recycled content and minimum waste
generation, including post use content with a preference for post consumer use
content should be considered.
● Reusable or recyclable: Select materials that can be easily dismantled and reused or
recycled at the end of their useful life.

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Water Conservation: It can be judged from utilizing the materials and systems that help
reduce water consumption in buildings and conserve water in landscaped areas. This is
similar to chemical admixture used in concrete to reduce water content.

Effective Indoor Air Quality: It should enhance by utilizing such material and meet the
following criteria:
● Low or non-toxic: Materials that emit few or no carcinogens, reproductive toxicants
or irritants as demonstrated by the manufacturer through appropriate testing.
● Minimal chemical emissions: Products that have minimal emissions of Volatile
Organic Compounds (VOCs). Products that also maximize resource and energy
efficiency while reducing chemical emissions.
● Low-VOC assembly: Materials installed with minimal VOC-producing compounds, or
no-VOC mechanical attachment methods with minimal hazards.
● Moisture resistant: Products and systems that resist moisture or inhibit the growth of
biological contaminants in buildings.

Steps to be followed for Material Selection: Surveying, Evaluation & Selection

Survey: Gathering of all technical information about the material which can be identified,
including manufacturers' information such as Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS), Indoor Air
Quality (IAQ) test data, product warranties, source material characteristics, recyclable
content data, environmental, performance and durability information
Evaluation: Confirmation of the technical information. Also, A life cycle assessment (LCA) is
conducted for evaluating the relative "greenness" of building materials and products.
Selection: involves the use of an evaluation matrix for scoring the project-specific
environmental criteria.

Q.5.a: What is the purpose of environmental assessment? (10 marks)

Environmental assessment is a process to predict environmental effects of proposed
initiatives before they are carried out.
An environmental assessment:
● Identifies potential adverse environmental effects;
● Proposes measures to mitigate adverse environmental effects;
● Predicts whether there will be significant adverse environmental effects, after
mitigation measures are implemented; and
● Includes a follow-up program to verify the accuracy of the environmental assessment
and the effectiveness of the mitigation measures.

An environmental assessment is a planning and decision-making tool. The purpose of an

environmental assessment are to:
● Minimize or avoid adverse environmental effects before they occur; and
● Incorporate environmental factors into decision making.
● To promote environmentally sound and sustainable development through the
identification of appropriate alternatives and mitigation measures.

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● To propose an Environment Impact Assessment Report and provide an accurate
Environment Impact Statement.

Q.5.b: What is the process of environmental assessment? (10 marks)

EIA Process in Sequence of Application:
1. Stakeholders Involvement: Stakeholders’ involvement occurs in various stages of
EIA to ensure quality, efficiency and effectiveness.
2. Project Screening and Scoping:
a. Determine necessity for EIA requirement.
b. Describe various screening criteria.
c. Scoping determines coverage or scope of EIA.
3. Project Design and Construction:
a. Type of project under consideration.
b. Physical dimensions of the area being considered.
c. Whether the resources will be used optically?
d. Whether there is an irretrievable commitment of land?
e. Whether the project is a critical phase of a larger development?
f. Whether there will be serious environmental disruptions during construction?
g. What are the long-term plans of the proponent?
4. Project Operation:
a. What provisions have been made to check the safety equipment regularly?
b. How will the hazardous waste products be handled?
c. What are the contingency plans developed to cope up with the possible
d. What provisions have been made for training the employees for environmental
e. What plans have been made for environmental monitoring?
5. Site Characteristics:
a. Whether the site is susceptible to floods, earthquakes and other natural
b. Whether the terrain is creating problems in predicting groundwater
characteristics and air pollution etc.?
c. Whether the local environment is conducive for the success of the project?
d. How many people are likely to be displaced because of the project?
e. What are the main attributes (e.g., protein content, calorie content, weed or
pest status, carnivorousness, rarity of species, etc.) of the local fauna and
f. Whether the project will interfere with the movements of fish population and
important migratory animals?
g. Whether historic sites are likely to be endangered because of the project?
6. Possible Environmental Impacts:
a. What are the possible short-term and long-term environmental impacts from the
projects during construction and after construction?

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b. Who would be affected because of these impacts?
7. Mitigation Measures:
a. Design system to avoid, reduce and minimize adverse impacts.
b. Enhance beneficial outcomes.
8. Monitoring and auditing:​ Identify impacts that require monitoring and auditing.
9. Socio-Economic Factors:
a. Who are the expected gainers and losers by the projects?
b. Where are the expected trade-offs?
c. Will the project interfere (blend, increase or reduce) with the existing
inequalities between occupational, ethnic and age groups?
d. Will it affect the patterns of local/regional/national culture?
10. Availability of Information and Resources:
a. Whether local and outside experts are available to consult specific impacts of
the project?
b. Whether the relevant guidelines, technical information and other publications
are available to identify the possible impacts of similar projects?
c. Whether relevant environmental standards, by-laws etc. are considered?
d. Whether the sources of relevant environmental data are identified and whether
they are accessible?
e. Whether the views of the specialist groups and general public regarding the
project have been considered?
f. Whether the competent technical manpower is available to handle the project?
11. EIA Report and Review: Complete information in report including non-technical
summary, methodologies used, results, interpretation and conclusions. Review
assesses adequacy of issues and facilitate decision making process.
12. Decision Making:​ The project may be accepted, accepted with alterations or rejected.

Q.6.a: What is the purpose of environmental impact assessment report? (10 marks)
Environmental Impact Assessment is defined as an activity designed to identify the impact on
the biogeophysical environment, on man and well-being of legislative proposals, projects,
policies, operational procedures and to interpret and communicate information.

EIA is a systematic process of identifying the future consequences of a current or proposed

action and how those impacts can be mitigated.

● Potentially screens out environmentally-unsound projects

● Proposes modified designs to reduce environmental impacts
● Identifies feasible alternatives
● Predicts significant adverse impacts
● Identifies mitigation measures to reduce, offset, or eliminate major impacts
● Engages and informs potentially affected communities and individuals
● Influences decision-making and the development of terms and conditions

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The purpose of the EIA process is to inform decision-makers and the public of the
environmental consequences of implementing a proposed project. The EIA document itself is
a technical tool that identifies, predicts, and analyzes impacts on the physical environment,
as well as social, cultural, and health impacts. If the EIA process is successful, it identifies
alternatives and mitigation measures to reduce the environmental impact of a proposed
project. The EIA process also serves an important procedural role in the overall
decision-making process by promoting transparency and public involvement.

Q.6.b: What is the importance of mitigation in environmental impact assessment. Write

some examples of environmental impact mitigative measures. (10 marks)
Mitigation and compensation in EA (SEA and EIA) aims at preventing adverse impacts from
happening and keeping those that do occur within acceptable levels. It is a creative and
practical part of the EA process that aims at assisting in:
● Developing measures to avoid, reduce, remedy or compensate significant adverse
impacts of development proposals on environment and society;
● Enhancing beneficial effects and lower costs for environmental protection and
conservation of natural resources as an outcome of development where possible; and
● Fostering better opportunities for business through positive outcomes for
environmental conservation, sustainable livelihoods and human well-being.

Mitigation and compensation in EA thus have a critical role to play in encouraging positive
development planning and in steering the development process in order to:
● Enable better protection of environmental assets and ecosystem services;
● Encourage prudent use of natural resources; and
● Avoid costly environmental damage, thus also making economic sense.

Hierarchy of Mitigation Impacts:

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Approaches for Mitigation of Impacts:

● Mitigation by Avoidance
● Mitigation by Reduction
● Mitigation by Remedy
● Mitigation by Compensation
● Mitigation by Enhancement

Sample Project for Study (Not Necessary to write in Exam:)

Exxon Neftegas Limited (ENL), the implementing agency for Sakhalin-1 Oil and Gasp
Project recognized the environmental sensitivity of the project area because the marine
coasts of Sakhalin Island was inhabited by the Steller's Sea Eagle ("Orlan") population.
The company felt that the oil resources can be developed in an environmentally
responsible manner by combining careful design practices and mitigation measures to avoid
impacts on sea eagles. In the summer of 2004, ENL initiated the artificial nest and perch
program to create pre-conditions to attract sea eagles to new coastal sites away from
Sakhalin-1 Project. Under this program, 13 new nest and 14 perch sites were built in the area
and the eagles are carefully monitored to determine the extent to which they utilize these
enhancements. Researches supported by ENL indicated that predation by agile climbing
brown bear was perhaps the single largest factor in fledgling eagle mortality. To address the
threat to the sea eagles from bears, ENL installed approximately 20 metal sheathing devices
on trees where the new nests were located and on neighbouring trees with existing nests to
discourage bear predation. The use of an artificial nest for the first time in 2006, near the
Chayvo well site established the effectiveness of the various mitigative measures taken by
ENL under the Sakhalin Project.

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Q.7.a: What are the Rehabilitation and Resettlement issues in large dam projects? (10
Ans: Condense answer from Q.11 (20marks to 10marks)

Q.7.b: What are the objectives of rehabilitation? (10 marks)

The following objectives of rehabilitation should be kept in mind before the people are given
an alternative site for living:
● Tribal people should be allowed to live along the lives of their own patterns and others
should avoid imposing anything on them.
● They should be provided means to develop their own traditional art and culture in
every way.
● Villagers should be given the option of shifting out with others to enable them to live a
community based life.
● Removal of poverty should be one of the objectives of rehabilitation.
● The people displaced should get an appropriate share in the fruits of the development.
Example: A really good move by ISC to share its profits among the active contributors.
● The displaced people should be given employment opportunities.
● Resettlement should be in the neighborhood of their own environment.
● If resettlement is not possible in the neighboring area, priority should be given to the
development of the irrigation facilities and supply of basic inputs for agriculture,
drinking water, wells, grazing ground for the cattle, schools for the children, primary
health care units and other amenities.
● Villagers should be taken into confidence at every stage of implementation of the
displacement and they should be educated, through public meetings, discussion about
the legality of the Land Acquisition act and other rehabilitation provisions.
● The elderly people of the village should be involved in the decision making

Q.8.a: What impact does the construction of highways have on the environment? (10
The best practice is to undertake an environmental impact assessment (EIA) before the road
is designed to get an understanding of the impact of the highway, some of the common
impacts due to highway construction are:
● Encroachment on precious ecology: Due to the long periods of construction (3-5
yrs) some of the animal species will move away from their natural habitats. Also the
loss of vegetation will cause migratory birds to dislocate.
● Adverse impact on historical/cultural monuments: During construction huge
amounts of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, sulphuric and phosphoric gases are
released in the atmosphere. These gases cause acid rains, scaling and other
hazardous effects on the locality and building structures (especially old - granite,
marble, wooden structures - eg: Taj Mahal)

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● Impairment of fisheries/ aquatic ecology and other beneficial water uses: The
water bodies like lake, pond or river which are close to the highway site get affected by
the construction activity. The workers and staff living near to the site uses the water
from these water bodies and in turn pollute them causing harm to aquatic ecology. The
rain water may wash away the chemicals and other hazardous products to the water
body affecting the oxygen content of it. This will lead to impairment of fisheries.
● Water quality :
○ Increased soil erosion during construction, which may cause water pollution
with sedimentation
○ Wastewater pollution caused by large construction sites, in particular bridge
○ Potential pollution associated with the construction of bridge foundations with
bored piles
○ Pollution caused by surface runoff and service area wastewater
● Water quality impacts due to construction sites
○ Expressway Runoff
○ Wastewater Effluent from the Service Area
● Erosion and Siltation: Large number of trees and plantation has to be removed for
highway construction. Embankment construction will need a lot of cutting and filling of
soil. These cause soil erosion and siltation causing damage to the surrounding areas.
● Environmental aesthetics: Trees getting cut, soil getting filled and destruction of
natural green pastures and water bodies causes the natural aesthetics of the
surrounding to be lost. Also large bridges and interchanges impacts and detract from
the natural beauty of the area.
● Noise and Vibration: During the construction stage massive equipments like
excavators, power shovels, dumpers, compactors, loader etc are used. This causes
considerable vibrations in nearby areas. They also produce high noise levels.
● Air pollution hazards
○ Air Quality Impacts during Operation: The vehicle emissions and fugitive dust
emissions from the expressway.
○ Air Quality Impacts during Construction: Airborne dust produced due to heavy
vehicles, earthworks, cement, asphalt (toxic fumes).
● Highway run-off pollution: Surface runoff from highways may contain sufficient
petroleum drippage plus spilled material (including toxic and hazardous materials)
which can adversely affect aquatic ecology and environmental aesthetics.
● Affect on Natural resources: Disruption of some existing irrigation systems,
particularly in the plain areas where the road will be constructed on filled-up
embankment. This fragmentation will also affect the existing flood-relief channels and
natural drainage of the area.
● Land Acquisition: Loss of farmland, forest land, existing old/ small structures,
existing infrastructure such as poles, wires etc. to create Highways through land

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Q.8.b: What are the strategies for reducing environmental impacts of construction of
highways? (10 marks)
The key environmental impacts of highway construction can be classified as vegetation loss,
water pollution, air and noise pollution, soil pollution, displacement of flora, fauna and local
population. The strategies to reduce these impacts can be:
● Removing only the necessary vegetation; applying for permits to cut down trees.
Revegetation of green areas.
● Make up embankments. Disposal of surplus earth. Disposal of waste (Plan for
processing solid and liquid waste)
● Performing of the cultural heritage protection plan. Covering or dampening uncovered
● Green areas, ornate. Maintenance, soil protection, water protection.
● Wastewater effluents from the service area to be treated by a chemical and biological
treatment system in accordance with applicable standards before discharge into the
nearby irrigation system.
● To minimise visual impacts, the following measures can be taken:
○ Minimise cut and fill slopes where possible and in particular avoid steep cut
○ Implement site specific landscaping and revegetation on both sides of the road,
all cut slopes and disturbed land, making the expressway a beautiful green
○ Design bridges, interchanges and do their infrastructure in such a way as to
achieve consistency with the surrounding natural landscape, local buildings and
facilities in terms of form, colour and texture.
● To minimise the night time noise impacts, noise suppressors can be used on
construction equipment where feasible. High noise machinery not to be allowed to
operate in the proximity of a school when classes are in session and also from 22:00
to 6:00 hrs where there are residential areas nearby.
● Establish greenbelt between the road and the villages and schools to reduce noise
levels and air pollution during construction and operation.
● To minimise the dust impact, construction fields and major access roads and haul
roads need to be watered on a set schedule, particularly in the dry season.
Construction materials storage and concrete mixing plants to be sited more than 100m
away and asphalt mixing plants 300m away in a downwind direction from residences
and schools. All the mixing equipment to be closed systems with dust extractors.

Q.9.a: What is an environmental impact report? Explain the purpose of environmental

impact report. (10 marks)
Environmental Impact Report (EIR): Also known as Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
provides documentation of the information and estimates derived from the various steps in
the EIA process. The information contained in an EIR provides the
decision-makers/regulators with valuable information that could ultimately contribute to either

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the abandonment or substantial modification of a proposed development action. A typical EIS
contains the following three parts:
● Part 1 – Methods and key issues: This part deals with the statement of methods
used and a summary of key issues.
● Part 2 – Background to the proposed development​: This part deals with
preliminary studies (i.e., need, planning, alternatives, site selection, etc.), site
description/baseline conditions, a description of proposed development and
construction activities and programmes.
● Part 3 – Environmental impact assessments on topic areas: This part deals with
land use, landscape and visual quality, geology, topography and soils, hydrology and
water quality, air quality and climate, terrestrial and aquatic ecology, noise, transport,
socio-economic and interrelationships between effects

Purpose of Environmental Impact Report:

● Clearly define objectives of EIA for the project
● Documenting of Impact and the mitigative steps suggested for the project
● Provide Authorities with the information needed to make a decision on project based
on environmental impact
● Record the proceeds of Environment Impact Assessment process
● Provide information regarding the project to Public (for review and comment)
● Response strategy for unforeseen risks related to Environmental Impacts.

Q.9.b: What is Waste management? Explain the benefits of Waste Management. (10
Waste Management: The term ‘Waste Management’ collectively means the management of
waste from its inception to the final stage of disposal. Thus, as one single unit it
encompasses right from the collection, disposal, recycling, to which the processes of
monitoring and regulation, respectively belong to, along with the legal frameworks that enable
the occurrence of waste management.

Hierarchy of Waste:

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Waste Management Process:

Types of Waste Management:

● Landfills
● Incineration/Combustion
● Recovery and Recycling
● Plasma gasification
● Composting
● Waste to Energy (Recover Energy)
● Avoidance/Waste Minimization

Benefits of Waste Management:

● Keeps the local environment clean and fresh.
● Reduces environmental pollution.
● Conserves energy.
● Effective Waste management can reduce the need for raw materials (by providing an
alternate source of raw material from used resources)
● Waste management has the potential to generate revenue.
● Creates employment.

Q.10.a: Explain the benefits of construction waste management. (10 marks)

Construction Waste: Waste generated by construction activities, such as scrap, damaged
or spoiled materials, temporary and expendable construction materials, and aids that are not
included in the finished project, packaging materials, and waste generated by the workforce.
Construction waste may contain lead, asbestos or other hazardous substances.

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Construction Waste Management: also sometimes known as Construction and Demolition
Waste Management. It is the process of avoiding, reducing, recycling and disposing wastes
generated from Construction works.

Benefits of Construction Waste Management:

● Less waste going to landfill.
● Less use of natural resources.
● Lower CO2 emissions - eg from producing, transporting and using materials and
recycling or disposing of the waste materials.
● Lower risk of pollution incidents.
● Lower costs of construction by saving on lesser materials usage.
● Construction achieves some of the Green Building norms by efficient waste
● Positive Perception: Clients and Contractors who pursue Green building and
Construction techniques are perceived positively by the market and people.
● Conservation of energy.

Q.10.b: What are the ways to reduce landfill waste? (10 marks)
Any material/ product which has served its purpose gets disposed. This disposed product
eventually reaches the landfill sites. In order to reduce landfill waste we either have to
consume less products or use the products judiciously and dispose only what is unusable at
all. Other products which can be utilised in any other ways than originally intended for can
improve the product life cycle and reduce waste. Some of the ways to achieve this are:

Reduce waste: Proper planning of works during construction ensures minimal wastage of
materials and eventually lesser waste reaching the landfills.

Composting: Most biodegradable items can be composted, including paper, cardboard,

wood and kitchen scraps. Proper sorting of items will ensure less waste goes to landfill and
rest gets used for useful purposes.

Recycling: Many of the materials like steel, glass, electrical fittings, batteries, bathtubs,
sinks, countertops at site can either be recycled or repurposed. In the process the
organisation can save/ earn some value. This will also help in reducing the waste disposal.

Reusing: Many a time the material which is partially used or materials left out at the end of
the day are disposed by the site workers. Instead of disposing them a reuse pile can be
maintained at site and materials used effectively. This helps reduce wastage and save cost.

Using Concentrated Products: Sprays, Paints, Chemical Solutions can be procured in the
concentrated form and diluted at site as per need. This saves cost of procuring material by
spending less on transportation, unit pricing of material and storage space needed.

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Eventually lesser containers are disposed from the construction site and helping reduce
landfill waste.

Donating: The items at site which are in fairly usable condition but are not required by the
construction team can be donated to the needy instead of dumping as scrap. This will help
reduce trash to landfill and also provide the company with additional points in LEEDS rating.

Q.11: What are the Rehabilitation and resettlement issues in large dam projects? (20
The displacement caused by large scale irrigation and hydro-projects has drawn
considerable attention in recent years. Many authors have noted that project proposals for
such large scale water resource management initiatives seldom include an assessment of
the displacement to be caused, or of the costs of rehabilitation (e.g., Thukral 1992, McCully
1997, Singh 1997). Numerous studies have also been conducted on resettlement and
rehabilitation of displaced persons and of the impacts of displacement on income, standards
of living and physical and emotional health.
It emerges that large dams are the single largest cause of displacement in India since India
got independence in 1947.

The issues with respect to Rehabilitation and Resettlement in case of large dam projects are:
● Loss of livelihood: Displacement is not a simple incident in the lives of the displaced
people. They have to leave their ancestral land and forests on which they depend for
their livelihood. Many of them have no skills to take up another activity or pick up any
other occupation. Usually, the new land that is offered to them is of poor quality and
the refugees are unable to make a living.
● Lack of facilities: When people are resettled in a new area, basic infrastructure and
amenities are not provided in that area. Very often, temporary camps become
permanent settlements.
● Increase in health problems: Lack of nutrition due to the loss of agriculture and
forest based livelihood, lead to the general decline in the health of the people. People
are used to traditional home remedies. But the herbal remedies and plants gets
submerged due to the developmental projects.
● Secondary displacement: Occupational groups residing outside the submergence
area but depending on the area for the livelihood also experience unemployment.
Village artisans, petty traders, laborers etc, lose their living.
● Loss of identity: Tribal life is community based. The tribal are simple people who
have a lifestyle of their own. Displacement have a negative impact on their livelihood,
culture and spiritual existence in the following ways:
○ Inter-community marriages, cultural functions, folk songs and dances do not
take place among the displaced people. When they are resettled, it is generally
individual based resettlement, which ignores communal character.
○ Resettlement increases the poverty of the tribal due to the loss of land,
livelihood, food insecurity, jobs, skills etc.

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○ Loss of traditional knowledge: ​The indigenous knowledge that they have
regarding the wildlife and the herbal plants are lost.
○ The land acquisition laws do not pay attention to the idea of communal
ownership of property which increases stress within the family.
○ The tribal people are not familiar with the market trends, prices of commodities
and policies. As such, they are exploited and get alienated in the modern era.

Q.12: Enlist various methods of land filling and explain any one of them. Give the
advantages and disadvantages of land filling. (20 marks)
A landfill site (also known as a tip, dump, rubbish dump, garbage dump or dumping ground
and historically as a midden is a site for the disposal of waste materials by burial. It is the
oldest form of waste treatment (although the burial part is modern; historically, refuse was
just left in piles or thrown into pits). Historically, landfills have been the most common
methods of organized waste disposal and remain so in many places around the world.
Some landfills are also used for waste management purposes, such as the temporary
storage, consolidation and transfer, or processing of waste material (sorting, treatment, or
recycling). Unless they are stabilized, these areas may experience severe shaking or ​soil
liquefaction​ of the ground during a large ​earthquake​.

Land filling methods: ​There are four major types of landfilling methods: Area method,
Trench method, Slope method and Valley method.
(explain any one of them as per the question)
1.Area method:
● The Area Method is used when the terrain is unsuitable for the excavation of trenches
in which to place the solid wastes. The filling operation usually is started by building an
earthen bund against which wastes are placed in thin layers and compacted as the fill
progresses until the thickness of the compacted wastes reaches a height of 2 to 3 m at
the end of day’s operation a 150 mm to 300 mm layer of cover material is placed over
the compacted fill. The cover material must be hauled in by truck or earth-moving
equipment from adjacent land or from borrow-pit areas. A final layer of cover material
is used when the fill reaches the final design height.
2.Trench method:
● The trench method is suited to areas where an adequate depth of cover material is
available at the site.
● Where the water table is well below the surface.
● To start the process, a portion of the trench is dug with a bulldozer and the dirt is
stockpiled to form an embankment behind the first trench.
● Wastes are then placed in the trench, spread into thin layers and compacted.
● The operation continues until the desired height is reached.
● Cover material is obtained by excavating an adjacent trench or continuing the trench
that is being filled.
3.Slope Method: In hilly regions it is not possible to find flat ground for landfilling, in such
situation waste is placed along the sides of existing hill slope. The wastes are spread on

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existing slope, compacted & covered. The cover materials usually come from just ahead of
the working face.
4.Valley Method:
● At locations where natural or artificial depression exists, it is often possible to use
them effectively for land filling operations.
● Canyons, ravines, fry borrow pits and quarries have all used for this purpose.
● The technique to place and compact solid waste in depression landfills vary with the
geometry of the site, the characteristics of the cover material, the hydrology and
geology of the site, and the access to the site.

Advantages of Landfilling:
● Volume can increase with little addition of equipment.
● Filled land can be reused for other community purposes.
● Low cost and ease of application, no high-tech.
● Absorb massive amounts of solid wastes.
● Replanting the area with trees is possible.
● Access to methane.

Disadvantages of Landfilling:
● Leakage of air pollutant gases: methane, carbon dioxide.
● Possibility of contamination of water sources by waste water resulting from landfill.
● Requires proper planning, design, and operation

Q.13: Describe the methods of collecting recyclables. State the purpose of recycling.
(20 marks)
● Recycling is the process of recovering and reusing waste products from household
use, manufacturing, agriculture and business and thereby reducing their burden on the
● Recycling is the process of collecting used materials, commonly known as waste and
creating new products to prevent the waste of potentially useful materials.
● Recycling is the process of collecting and processing materials that would otherwise
be thrown away as trash and turning them into new products. Recycling can benefit
your community and the environment.

The Steps involved in Recycling:

Methods of Collecting recyclables:

Curbside collection: In this type of collection system Local government authority arranges a
door-to-door collection of segregated waste and recyclable materials. This is then sent to the
Sorting centers from where it reaches the respective recycling plants.

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Drop-off centers: Designated drop off centers for recycling materials where the material can
be handed over. In this type of a system the material is sorted by workers at the center and
then sent to respective recycling plants.
Deposit or refund Programs: In this type of recyclable material collection a business unit or
government itself organises a campaign to collect particular types of materials and provide
credits to purchase new items or credits to utilise other services of the agency. This is a more
focussed approach to receive particular types of recyclable materials eg. old clothes
collection, old electrical equipment collection. The need for sorting is minimised in this case
and the collected items directly reaches the Recycling plant.

Purpose of Recycling:
● Reduces the amount of waste sent to landfills and incinerators.
● Conserves natural resources such as timber, water and minerals.
● Increases economic security by tapping a domestic source of materials.
● Prevents pollution by reducing the need to collect new raw materials.
● Saves energy.
● Supports Local manufacturing and conserves valuable resources.
● Helps create jobs in the recycling and manufacturing industries

Q.14: What is eco friendly construction? Give an example of ecological building. (20
Ans: Eco-friendly, or ecological, construction is building a structure that is beneficial or
non-harmful to the environment, and resource efficient. Otherwise known as green building,
this type of construction is efficient in its use of local and renewable materials, and in the
energy required to build it, and the energy generated while being within it.
Eco-friendly construction has developed in response to the knowledge that buildings have an
often negative impact on our environment and our natural resources. This includes
transporting materials hundreds or thousands of miles, which has a negative impact on the
energy required to transport them, and also in emissions of hazardous chemicals from a
poorly designed building that creates and traps them.

CII-Sohrabji Godrej Green Business Centre, Hyderabad

This architectural masterpiece has
set the world’s best example of
passive architectural design. The
CII-Sohrabji Godrej Green Business
Center (GBC) was the was the first
building outside of the US to be
awarded LEED platinum rating at
the time of its inauguration. The
building doesn't let out any waste
and recycles it all within. It can be
said that building is literally made up
of only recycled materials.

Construction & Environment Management Page 23 of 25 By: Venu Nataraj, 2nd Sem, M.Arch (CPM)
● Building layout ensures that 90 % of spaces have daylight access and views to the
● North facades are glazed for efficient diffused light.
● Low heat transmitting glass is used.
● Double glass to further reduce heat gain.
● Natural lighting - no lights are used until late in the evening.
● Minimum lux levels for all workstations have been ensured.
● Light captured from as many sides possible - the use of courtyards
● Easy navigation - use of ramps for circulation, Wheelchair friendly washrooms
● Heat Vent shafts to cool the interiors.
● Courtyard functions as a convective thermostat and gives protection from extremes of
weather. The total number of courtyards in one residence could sometimes be five to
● Minimal damage during construction and occupancy, to the natural elements of water
flow, air quality, vegetation, and topography.
● The built form responds to the rocky site.
● Small footprint, design retains site contours and existing boulders.
● "Contour trenching" adopted to avoid erosion and sedimentation.
● During construction, barricades were installed to prevent contaminants from spreading
to surrounding areas.
● Orientation to the sun for optimum solar gain
● Fenestrated Jali walls for controlled passage of air and light.
● Locally sourced/ extracted raw materials for construction.
● Bagasse Boards, broken tiles, mineral fibres, quarry dust, fly ash, low VOC paints
used as materials. 77% of the building materials used was recycled/ reused material.

Q.15: How does development affect the environment and climate? Explain with an
example. (20 marks)
Development affects the environment and climate in many ways:
● Release of Carbon dioxide through deforestation activities causing greenhouse effect.
● Release of sulphuric and phosphoric content into air and soil due to the construction
activities and construction waste causing air and soil pollution.
● Release of Carbon dioxide while production and usage of cement (5% Globally
caused by CO​2​) increasing the Greenhouse effect.
● Release of and CO​2 and Carbon Monoxide due to the transportation for construction
and development activities causing Greenhouse effect and air pollution.
● Noise and Air pollution caused by transportation for Construction/ Demolition activities.
● Deforestation activities carried out for the purpose of Agriculture, Infrastructure
projects, etc.

Development is almost always done at the expense of natural ecosystems such as

forestlands or wetlands, which are carbon sinks that absorb CO2. For example, trees are
50% carbon. When forests are cleared for agriculture or urban development, they are often

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just being burned down. This biomass burning directly releases CO2 into the atmosphere.
Decomposing of wood or forest-floor biomass by microorganisms also releases CO2,
although at a much slower pace than burning. Even when forest is turned into timber for
construction, the wood will eventually be decomposed by microorganism and CO2 is
released. This is how deforestation exacerbates global warming. A 2007 assessment by the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimated that 17% of annual CO2
emission comes from deforestation.
Another aspect is the use of cement. According to a Columbia University source the cement
industry accounts for around 5% of global CO2 emissions. Cement is the primary ingredient
in concrete, which is needed for constructing buildings, roads, and bridges. The primary
component of cement is limestone. The production of cement releases greenhouse gas
emissions both directly and indirectly: the heating of limestone releases CO2 directly, while
the burning of fossil fuels to heat the kiln indirectly results in CO2 emissions.

The third aspect is the emission associated with increased consumption—an outcome of
development. For example, more highways will discourage the use of public transit, resulting
in more emissions. So do a TV in every room and heating and cooling of buildings.

Q.16: Describe the methods of collecting recyclables. State the purpose of recycling.
(20 marks)
Ans: Repeat of Q.13

Construction & Environment Management Page 25 of 25 By: Venu Nataraj, 2nd Sem, M.Arch (CPM)