Environmental Impact Assessment on Chikwawa Road in Malawi Essay

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ES 1PREAMBLE This document serves as an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report for the proposed road to Fatima in Chikwawa district. The project runs from Thabwa (near Shire River) to Fatima. The road has a lot of bridges and culverts since it is near the Shire River. The project proponent is Chikwawa Town Assembly with Asian Grant Aid estimated at US$ 7Million. The total length of the road is about 22 Km and is a dusty road.

There are 25 bridges and culverts that are estimated to be built along this road. ES 2SCOPE OF THE WORKS The proposed scope of the project is construction of tarmac road since currently the road is a dusty one and also construction of bridges, construction of drainage system (culverts) along the roads, installation of twenty five bus lay byes, pedestrian walkway and cycle track, kerb stones, road markings, street lights, pedestrian crossings and signals at school, hospital and shopping centres. ES 3EIA STUDY APPROACH

The EIA study was commissioned to determine the potential impacts (both negative and positive) on the environment that could arise from the proposed project in Chikwawa. To accomplish this task, the EIA team was guided by the Terms of References (TORs) drawn by the Environmental Affairs Department (EAD). For thorough exploration of the TORs and addressing the identified impacts, the team used several approaches such as site visits, observations, literature review, professional judgment, discussions, with the authorities.

CHAPTER ONE 1. 0Background Information Chikwawa is one of the 28 Districts in Malawi located in the Southern Region of Malawi. It is one of the border districts sharing the country’s international boundary with Mozambique to the West and district boundaries with Mwanza to the North, Thyolo to the East, Blantyre to North East and Nsanje to the South. Its main topographic features are the flat basin of Shire River and the Thyolo-Chikwawa Escarpment.

Since Malawi became independence in 1964 there has been no tarmac road for people staying around this road and as such there has been a problem of transportation where people have to walk more that 12km in order to get transport to travel say in town, Blantyre, or connect to another district. There is a mission town at Fatima where there is a catholic mission school, hospital, and a church. Sick persons are carried in wheel barrows in order to gat them to this mission hospital. It takes a number of years for this road to be gravelled which makes it difficult to access the road.

This will be the main road which will connect Chikwawa district to Thyolo district where there is another SDA mission hospital, and school. 1. 1Screening Criteria The proposed project falls within the category A4 (Infrastructure Projects) list of prescribed projects for which an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is mandatory in the EIA guidelines since it involves construction of a road. Section A4. 5 states that “Construction of new highways and feeder roads or expansion of existing highways and feeder roads” shall require EIA study. 1. 2Methodology

For thorough exploration of Terms of References (TORs) and addressing of the identified impacts, the EIA team used several approaches such as site visits observation, literature review, professional judgement, discussions with the relevant authorities. These tools were used to obtain data for compilation of this report. Considerable time was spent on stakeholder consultations. 1. 3Aim and Objectives of the study The aim of the study is to highlight potential negative impacts and suggest a appropriate environmental management plan for the construction of Fatima road.

Key specific objectives for the assessment are: a. To describe in general, the major components of Fatima road construction. b. To review environmental policies, regulatory and administrative procedures and other pieces of legislation in relation to the implementation of the road project and to make appropriate recommendations in the construction of Fatima road c. To identify both positive and negative environmental and social impacts of Fatima road construction project d.

To develop an appropriate environmental management and strategic plan with recommended mitigation measures and strategies for addressing negative factors in the programme. CHAPTER TWO 2. 0PROJECT DESCRIPTION 2. 1Nature of the Project The proposed project under study if Fatima road under urban roads constructions. An Asian investor would like to invest $10 million USD on a project that requires an Environmental Impact Assessment. 2. 2Project Proponent The project proponent is Chikwawa District Assembly, a local authority under the Ministry of Local Government and Urban Development.

The core function of Blantyre City Assembly is the provision of municipal services, one of which is the construction and maintenance of roads. The proponent details are as follows: Proponent Name:Chikwawa District Assembly Postal Address:Private Bag 67, Blantyre, Malawi Physical Address:Blantyre Civic Centre, Kasungu Crescent. Telephone :(265) 01 870 211 Facsimile:(265) 01 870 417/ 508 E-mail address:[email protected] org. mw Contact Person:The Chief Executive Officer 2. 3Location of the Project Site The site of the project, Fatima road the road passes several villages.

Please see the map below: Map: Location of Chikwawa District [pic] [pic] 2. 3Project Cost The project is estimated to cost US $10. 0 million. 2. 4Employment The project is expected to employ at its peak 300 people. To be in line with Government policy, effort will be made so that 30% of the total workforce should be females. Most of the works will be achieved through intensive use of machine and equipment. 2. 5Lifespan of the Project The project construction is expected to be carried out within a period of 24 months starting from January 2010 to December 2011. . 6Design Life The design life of the proposed project is 15 to 20 years. 2. 7Main Contractor The main contractor will be from Asia. CHAPTER THREE 3. 0Physical and Social –Economic Conditions 3. 1Topography The topography of the project area comprises of relatively flat, undulating terrain. Temperatures are hot ranging from an average of 20 oC in the cold season and 32 oC in the hottest months of September, October and November. The average annual rainfall is 1,122 mm. Chikwawa District is located in the Southern Region of the Republic of Malawi.

It is bordered with four districts, namely, Mwanza to the North, Blantyre to the North East, Thyolo to the East, Nsanje to the South and it also shares an international border with Mozambique to the West (see map below). The District Headquarter is approximately 54 km away from Blantyre, the Commercial City of Malawi. 3. 2Geology Geological as well as seismic background information was obtained from geological maps and reports from the Geological Survey Department of Malawi. The information comprised 1:1 000 000, 1:250 000 and 1:100 000 scale geological maps and their accompanying reports.

Additional geological information was gathered from existing studies carried out in Malawi. 3. 3 Soil Condition Profile The soil profile seen in road cuttings, excavations and in river banks comprise both sandy and clay (saprolite grey brown), alluvium as well as residual soils derived from pyroxene granulite gneiss, syenitic gneiss, and to a lesser extent dolerite. Saprolite grey brown covers almost 90% of the project area. Saprolite typically contain ;20% clay minerals and are free of rock boulders. 3. 4Vegetative Resource of the Area

The vegetative resources in the area comprise modified tree plantings and few indigenous plant species especially in the Blantyre area of the project. There are Eucalyptus saligna, Toona ciliata, Jacaranda mimoesifolia, Callistemon vimminalis, mahogany, Ficus benjamina, Grevelia robusta, Delonix regia (flamboyant) Liquidambar grandiflora and few indigenous tree species comprising Brachystegia manga (mombo), Ficus natalensis (kachere), Ficus bengalensis (mkuyu), Bridelia micrantha (mpasa) and Combretum zeyheri (mulama). 3. 5Existing Land Use The total land area of the district is 4,755 sq. m, which is about 15 % and 5. 04% of the area of Southern Region and national respectively. In terms of agriculture, the total land area is 471, 957 hectares of which 20, 118 hectares is dry arable land and 29,962 hectares is wet arable land. Estates occupy 19,000 hectares while public land covers 211,788 hectares. CHAPTER FOUR 4. 0PROPOSED MAJOR ACTIVITIES An overall goal is to construct a dusty road to a tarmac road that will be fro thabwa to Fatima Mission. The constructions of which project will compose of the following components: Construction of drainage systems along the roads. . Construction of the road 2. Installation of bus lay byes (15 No. ) 3. Installation of pedestrian walkway and cycle track 4. Installation of kerb stones 5. Installation of street lights 6. Installation of pedestrian crossings and signals ( At school, hospital and shopping centres) 4. 1Stages of the Project 1. Pre – Construction stage 2. Construction Stage 3. Site Clearing 4. Cutting of topsoil to spoil and fill. 5. Construction of Sub Base Course 6. Construction of the Base 7. Surfacing of the Wearing Course 8. Post construction Stage CHAPTER FIVE 5. Anticipated Environmental Impact and Mitigation Measures This chapter looks at anticipated impacts, both positive and negative that will come with the proposed project. 5. 1Disturbance of underground and overhead utilities This impact is likely to arise during the pre-construction stage. To mitigate the impact, utilities will be relocated and the excavated areas reinstated by filling back the trenches. The legally affected service providers will be compensated accordingly. Demolition of affected properties where the road will pas in some areas 5. 2Change of topography (visual changes)

This impact will be generated during construction activities mainly due to clearing of carriageway, cutting and filling, and scarifying of pavements and borrow pits. It is therefore anticipated that topography along the Fatima road will change due to these activities. 5. 3Clearing of vegetation and trees Some tree trees like Jacaranda mimoesifolia, Callistemon vimminalis, Khaya anthotheca (Mahogany), Liquidambar grandiflora will have to be removed. Trees shall be planted to enhance appearance of the road and to provide a natural buffer between the road and adjoining land.

If trees are selected without due consideration to the special needs of roads, they generate safety and sustainability problems. Inappropriate species can cause environmental damage. 5. 4Need for Quarry materials The Project will require significant amounts of quarry materials. However, no specific blasting will be required for the proposed project. Although quarry operation is independent and regulated, the overall environmental impacts will be significant because of amount required. To minimize the impact associated with quarrying activities only approved quarry areas such as Njuli quarry shall be used. . 5Neglected mitigation measures. No significant impact is expected during the operation stage of the proposed project other than those resulting from neglected mitigation measures in disposing of spoiled materials, erosion, tree planting along the road alignment, and rehabilitation of borrow and quarry areas. It is, therefore, necessary to undertake regular monitoring to ensure that all required mitigation measures are implemented. 5. 6Dust Pollution Clearing of camp sites will generate dust that will pollute the air thereby inconveniencing the neighbourhood to the campsite.

Construction work shall involve breaking up, digging, crushing, transporting, and dumping large quantities of dry material. Spraying the surface with water will reduce the impact of the suspended particulate matter caused by the dust. Other precautions shall include: 1. Trucks carrying spoil materials shall have tarpaulin covers to prevent spills during haulage. 2. Crushers shall be fitted with dust suppression equipment. 3. SPM shall be monitored at the main dust-creating sites such as crushers, and dust masks will be issued to the workers. 5. Noise Pollution A significant increase in noise is expected during construction. The main sources are heavy machinery such as bulldozers, excavators, stabilizers, concrete mixing plant, drills, and stone crushers. Proper equipment maintenance and restricted operation period between 07. 00 to 17. 00 hours will reduce noise. 5. 8Excessive Water Consumption It is anticipated that the pre – construction activities will not put significant strain on water resources because water consumption will only be experienced during construction of the campsite.

Significant amount of water (approximately 50m3 per day) will be required for road base formation during construction stage To mitigate the impacts, water will have to be drawn from nearby shire river. 5. 9Water pollution Quality of water in Shire River has been registering high values of Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) and nitrates. As such, any additional load to the stream arising from project activities may further impair the quality. Therefore, sewage from construction camps, toilets and any excess unwanted solid waste shall be properly transported to their designated disposal site.

Temporary toilets shall be constructed by the contactor. 5. 10Maintenance of water drainage. The proposed highway crosses small Rivers. Drainage is an important part of road maintenance. Unless road drainage is maintained properly, drains and culverts can block, causing overflows into the rivers and damage the road itself. Adequate drainage and crossing structures, as well as pumping, will be used to void water overflows into the streams during construction. 5. 11Spillage of fuel and lubricants

The impact of the presence of oil, grease and heavy metals emanated from construction plant is expected to be minor. However continued monitoring shall be deployed to assess the levels of pollution and take appropriate measures. 5. 12Effect on historic or cultural sites. The proposed project is crossing the Independence Arch and Clock Tower which are listed national monuments. However, construction works will not affect these structures. 5. 13Land acquisition conflicts Land acquisition may cause conflicts with the local community.

Chikwawa District Assembly in liaison with Ministry of Housing, Physical Planning and Surveys shall compensate for the affected structures in accordance to relevant policies and laws of Malawi Government according to the requirements outlined in the provisions of sections 11 to 15 of Land Acquisition Act (Cap 57:04) and relevant provisions outlined in section 62 to 66 of Town and Country Planning Act (Cap 23:01). Further, the project was developed with a view to minimize the need for land acquisition and involuntary resettlement by designing the road width to fall within the city road reserve. . 14Influence on social-cultural beliefs The construction process will take an approximate period of 18 months. As such, the project will bring with it construction camps and migratory and foreign workers. These workers may have temporary influence on the social-cultural beliefs in the project area. To mitigate the problems, the Queens Park located in Limbe has been identified to host the construction camp which shall later turn into a fire station for Limbe at the completion of the road project.

Education about the local culture and observances, particularly towards women may be required. 5. 15HIV/AIDS Prevalence Loose behaviours from the workers through sexual indulgence may aid the spreading of HIV/ AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. It is therefore proposed that civic education on HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections (STI) will be provided. Condoms may be distributed to the workforce as well as the community to mitigate the problem. 5. 16Hazardous and toxic materials Some of the materials used during construction shall be hazardous and toxic.

Loading and transferring of fuels, solvents, and lubricants shall be carried out on paved areas with curbs or bunds to control potential spills. The storage areas shall have signs displayed with warnings for its potential fire and other hazards. 5. 17Road Safety Construction of a high-speed road can lead to severance issues. Residents must be able to cross the road safely and particular attention must be given to vulnerable groups such as children, the elderly, and disabled. The safety of road users and workforce during construction shall be of paramount importance.

The contractor is responsible for ensuring that all construction vehicles observe speed limits on the construction sites and on public roads. 5. 18Traffic Congestion Road diversions will be constructed to facilitate passage of traffic during rehabilitation and construction period. This will be short lived, only lasting during the rehabilitation and construction period. CHAPTER SIX 6. 0Public Involvement and Disclosure 6. 1Public Consultations Stakeholder participation was built into the project right from the feasibility study stage of the project to the conception stage.

The negative and positive impacts were discussed with the Chikwawa City Assembly, local authorities, media houses, public institutions, utility providers, road users, opinion leaders, people living and working along the roads, local community and independent organisations operating in the zone of influence of the project. The approach used comprised group discussions and observations during project site visits. Extensive stakeholders’ consultative meetings were held with the relevant stakeholders from 22nd to 25th January, 2007 as part of the project explanation and consent.

The schedule of meetings is provided for in Table 2 below and the evidence of their participation is given in Appendix 2. 6. 2Public Concerns and Disclosure The consultation meetings with the stakeholders came up with the following issues which needed to be addressed as the project is being planned and designed: 6. 3Traffic flow and control during construction stage Traffic flow and control through the Thabwa to Fatima Road should be maintained throughout the construction period to avoid interruption of business and access to residences. 6. Increase of Volume and speed of traffic during operation stage The improved road will increase both the volume and speed of traffic and there is a need to safeguard all pedestrian crossings along the highway and ensure needs of people with various physical challenges is taken into consideration during design and implementation of the project. 6. 5Issue of Bill boards The participants suggested that the new carriage way should not be overloaded with bill boards since that are cause of distraction and obstruction to traffic signs. 6. 6Improvement of drainage structures

There is a need to consider and deal with drainage structures to avoid impending usage of the road by pedestrians, cyclists and the disabled. 6. 7Demolition of Affected Properties There is need to identify property and infrastructures that have been marked for removal, relocation and demolition. The owners of the buildings that will be affected need to be identified and served with notice in good time. This is to enable compensation procedures to be effected well before the commencement of the project i. e. January 2010. 6. 8Quality of work and duration of the construction period

The stakeholders needed to be assured of the quality of work and duration of the construction period and that quality should not be substandard. 6. 9Use of solar power to switch on and off street lights It was suggested that when installing street lights, use of solar power should be explored to switch on and off the street lights. 6. 10Removal of trees dangerously leaning into the road It was stated that some trees were dangerously leaning over the road, and are a potential sources of accidents. It was therefore suggested that such trees should be removed. 6. 1Construction of Bus Shelters. The public requested for provision of well designed, durable and pleasant bus shelters. 6. 12Well managed landscaping The public requested that the project should be complemented by a good landscaping management. 6. 13Support for the project All stakeholders expressed happiness and willingness to support the project. The stakeholders displayed positive attitudes and strong desire to see the roads improved. List of the people that attended public consultations are shown in Appendix 1 by their categories and dates the meetings were held.

CHAPTER SEVEN 7. 0Policy, Institutional and Legal Framework 7. 1Introduction This chapter outlines and analyses Policies, Legislative and Administrative framework related to the preparation of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for projects. In 1994, the Government of Malawi adopted a new Republican Constitution, and a number of new policies and legislation with the aim of promoting and consolidating sustainable socio-economic development in the country through the mainstreaming of environmental considerations in project planning and implementation.

These include the National Environmental Action Plan (NEAP), the National Environmental Policy (NEP), the National Land Policy, the Environmental Management Act (EMA), the MGDS, Town and Country Planning Act, and Public Roads Act among others. The following paragraphs highlight some selected policies and laws, which are applicable in the planning and implementation of land and road infrastructure sector projects. 7. 2Overarching National Policies 7. 2. 1The Constitution of Republic of Malawi, 1995. A new Constitution of the Republic of Malawi came into force in 1995.

Section (d) of the Constitution sets out a broad framework for sustainable environmental management at various levels in Malawi. Among other issues it calls for prudent management of the environment and accords future generations their full rights to the environment. The Constitution also provides for a framework for the integration of international environmental and foreign case law into the national legal system. 7. 2. 2The National Environmental Policy, 1996 and the Environmental Management Act, Number 23 of 1996

The National Environmental Policy was adopted in 1996, and aims at narrowing the gap between the degradation of the resources and the environment on one hand and sustainable development on the other. It provides a national framework through which other policies can be reviewed within the principles of sound environmental management and sustainable development. Among the guiding principles is the recognition of the participation of the public through public consultations in the projects.

The Environmental Management Act number 23 of 1996 provides the basic legal and Administrative framework for environmental planning and management including environmental impact assessment for prescribed projects. The administration of environmental assessment is managed by the Director of Environmental Affairs in the Environmental Affairs Department of the Ministry of Mines, Natural resources and Environmental Affairs. Section 24 of the Environmental Management Act specifies the steps to be followed in the preparation of Environmental Impact Assessment for projects.

In compliance to section 24 of the act, The Guidelines for Environmental Impact Assessment were put in place in December 1997. The guidelines provide a list of prescribed projects for environmental impact assessment. Section 27 of the act specifies that any project that is subject to environmental impact assessment can not be approved by any licensing authority in Malawi for implementation until a satisfactory impact study report is approved and a certificate is issued by the Director of Environmental Affairs. . 2. 3The National Land Policy, 2002 The National Land Policy was adopted in 2002 and focuses on land as a basic resource common to all people of Malawi. The policy provides opportunities for the people of Malawi to embark on a path of socially and environmentally sustainable development. In addition, the policy highlights a number of approaches for addressing problems facing land resources. The policy recognizes several sectoral policies and strategies in physical planning, fisheries, and environment. 7. . 5Other Relevant Legislations Other related legislation that relates to the road sector environmental issues include: The Advertising Act, Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS), Public Roads Act and the Local Government Act. CHAPTER EIGHT 8. 0Recommendations and conclusions of the study 8. 1Recommended Mitigation The recommended mitigation measures to address the negative impacts are as follows: 1. Utilities will be relocated and the excavated areas reinstated by filling back the trenches. 2.

The legally affected service providers will be compensated accordingly 3. The project shall consider aesthetic concerns by planting vegetation and trees to mitigate the visual changes to the landscape. 4. Tree plantations on top of embankments and rights-of-way will serve as mechanism for soil retention and erosion control. 5. Water shall be sprayed on road surfaces, borrow pits and quarries regularly during construction to reduce dust. 6. Use of well maintained machinery and restricting time of operations to reduce impact of noise. . Soil and water contamination will be minimized by stockpiling and damping construction materials at approved sites 8. Use of proper sanitary facilities to reduce water pollution emanating from solid and liquid waste 9. Appropriate traffic control during road works and observation of speed limits 10. Civic education on HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections (STI) will be provided to curb HIV/ AIDS prevalence. 11. Education about the local culture and observances, particularly towards women may be required. 2. Sites of social, religious, or historical significance shall be mapped and, if necessary, marked to avoid unwitting damage. 8. 2 CONCLUSION The project examined the existing physical and socio- economical conditions of the proposed project area and identified potential environmental impacts associated with the project and came up with appropriate mitigation measures. The project’s predicted adverse significant impacts occur during construction. The impacts are significant, short-term, and reversible.

These impacts are manageable; most of them can be minimized through engineering solutions easily incorporated into project design. However, it is necessary to ensure that the environmental management and monitoring plan be integrated into both the construction and operation activities of the project. Therefore the following recommendations should be followed by the proponent and all relevant stakeholders during the implementation of the project: 1. The proponent and all the stakeholders to the proposed project should adopt and adhere to the recommendations made in this report 2.

The proponent and the stakeholders implement the mitigation measures as outlined in the Environmental Management Plan. 3. The proponent should engage professionally qualified personnel to assist in the implementation of all stages of the project to realize the recommendations made. 4. The EMP needs to be updated if the final engineering design will lead to changes in the existing project plan. REFERENCES 1. Blantyre City Assembly, (1999). Blantyre Urban Structure Plan 2000-2014, Blantyre, Malawi. . Government of Malawi, (1998) Malawi Population and Housing Census, National Statistical Office (NSO), Government Press, Zomba. 3. Government of Malawi, (2002), National Land Policy, Ministry of Lands Physical Planning and Surveys, Lilongwe. 4. Government of Malawi, (1988), Guidelines for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) in Malawi, Department of Environmental Affairs, Lilongwe. 5. Government of Malawi, (1996), Environmental Management Act, Number 23, 1996 Government Press, Zomba. 6.

Government of Malawi, (1996), National Environmental Policy, Ministry of Research and Environmental Affairs, Lilongwe. 7. Government of Malawi, (1988), Town and Country Planning Act of Malawi (1988), Department of Town and Country Planning, Lilongwe. 8. Blantyre City Assembly, (2007), Draft Report of Basic Design on the Project for Improvement of Blantyre City Roads in the Republic of Malawi, Japan International Cooperation Agency, Japan Engineering Consultants Co. , Ltd 9. Government of Malawi, (2007), Environmental and Social Impacts

Guidelines for the Road Sector, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs, Environmental Affairs Department, Lilongwe. 10. National Roads Authority (2001), Road Maintenance and Rehabilitation Project (ROMARP), Consultancy Services for Detailed Engineering Design of Selected Urban Roads in Lilongwe and Blantyre/Limbe, Malawi, Draft Final Design Report, Lilongwe. 11. http://www. malawi. gov. mw/Education/DEP/28%20REVISED%20CHIKWAWA%20DEP. pdf 12. http://www. mlgrd. gov. mw/Docs/Chikwawa_DDP. pdf APPENDIX 1 Schedule for stakeholders Meetings Date |Time |Institutions |Description | | | | |Radio | |22nd August, 2009 |14. 30-16. 30 hrs |Media Houses |Television | | | | |Print Media | | |10. 00- 12. 0 hrs |Public Institutions |Hospital | |23rd August, 2009 | | |Churches | | | | |Education | | |14. 30-16. 30 hrs |People living along the main|Business | | | |road |Residents | Date |Time |Institutions |Description | |24th August, 2009 |10. 00-12. 00 hrs |Opinion Leaders |Members of Parliament | | | | |Chiefs | | | | |Community Development Committees | | |14. 30-16. 0 hrs |Public utility providers |Electricity | | | | |Water | | | | |Communication | | | | |Sewer | | | | |Minibus Owners Association of Malawi | | | | |Truck Companies | |25th August, 2009 |10. 00-12. 00 hrs |Road Users. |Road Traffic Department | | | | |Traffic Police | | | | |Ministry of Transport and Public works | | | | |Consumer Association of Malawi |