Impact Of Roads On Environment Environmental Sciences Essay

Road undertakings with their important benefits to the people may besides hold negative effects on the communities around and the natural environment. The appraisal of the impact on the environment of route undertaking schemes to do commissariats for avoiding or extenuating the effects where possible.

The West African states seem to hold really strong consideration for the environment holding been signers to assorted international pacts on environment. This is farther informed by the ECOWAS states holding a joint programme to better the sub-region ‘s substructure of which improved route conveyance is a portion. For such route strategies tracking the states in the part, strict and hurting taken Environmental appraisals are conducted to relieve the impact of such buildings on the people and the environment.

The West African states besides have policies, legal and administrative model on environment of international criterion. It is compulsory in most West African states for Environmental Impact Assessment to be conducted before major building plants are carried out. They besides provided for Environmental Management Plan ( EMP ) . The execution of EMPs are nevertheless non without jobs. The low degree of resources in the part is a major hinderance for the execution of EMP. It is nevertheless observed that more conformity to EMP on givers funded undertakings than authorities funded undertakings.

1. Introduction.

In general Environmental Assessment ( EA ) can be said to be a procedure to foretell the environmental effects of proposed substructure initiatives before they are carried out. EA seeks to place possible negative environmental effects of the proposed enterprises and suggest a program or step to extinguish, extenuate or in the scenario where non much can be done, compensate for the effects. It besides seeks to foretell if there will be important inauspicious consequence after execution of the proposed program. The universe Bank has produced guidelines which provides descriptive methods for planing and put to deathing effectual EA in assorted facet of route undertakings. The guidelines are in the World Bank ‘s enchiridion on ‘Roads and the Environment ‘ ( Technical Paper Number 376 ) . The aim of this paper, hence, is to find how these guidelines best applied to route undertakings in West Africa, Nigeria and Ghana as instance survey.

2. Methodology:

The attack to this study is extended survey of the World Bank ‘s enchiridion on ‘Roads and the Environment ‘ ( Technical Paper Number 376 ) papers with the position to holding a good apprehension of international guidelines for Environmental Assessment. Furthermore, the group besides studied the policies, legal, administrative model of EIA for two states of Ghana and Nigeria. The EIA processs and guidelines were besides studied. Subsequently, the study tried to see the commissariats in each of the two states and comparison with international guidelines. Thereafter, two EIA studies of undertakings from the two states were studied to cognize the processs used and the result therein.

3. Importance and function of EA

So why is EA so of import and what is its function? The demand for EA can non be over emphatic. Infrastructure development such as route building brings a batch of direct and indirect benefits to the society. Some of these are entree to markets, entree to wellness service centres, occupation creative activity, decrease in travel times and vehicle operating costs. However route building besides takes its toll on the environment. Some identified negative facets attributed to irate the break of the supports of communities, the addition in noise degrees, addition in respiratory jobs due to air pollution, dirt eroding and intervention with works and carnal life. Environmental assessment serves as the medium through which negative effects such as these as a consequence of the building, are brought to visible radiation. The EA study which is the ensuing papers from the appraisal procedure so serves as an input to the determination doing procedure of whether to green visible radiation the undertaking of cull it.

The environmental appraisal procedure

The chief stairss in the EA procedure are can be summerised as:

Determine if EA is required and place who is involved

Plan the EA

Behavior analysis and fix EA study

Review EA study

Make EA determination

Implement EA program as appropriate

Figure 3.1 The environmental appraisal procedure

Types and importance of environmental appraisal

There are two chief groups of environmental appraisals ( 1 ) . The Traditional Project-Specific EAs which consist of Project specific EAs, Programmatic EAs, Summary environmental rating and Regional EAs. The Strategic EAs which consist of Sectoral EAs, EAs of programme and policies, structural accommodation undertakings, privitisation enterprises, international pacts, and national budgets.

The issues on Environment have increased in recent old ages both at national and international degrees. This dictates hence that sound policies and determinations must be made. In states of Economic Community of West African States ( ECOWAS ) part made of 15 states viz. , Benin, Cape Verde, Cote d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Burkina Faso, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo, H2O scarceness, H2O quality and land debasement are of primary concern.

The function of the types Environmental Assessment for infrastructural development in ECOWAS states is critical for the nutriment and growing of full part, as transit is about making links between communities and advancing the integrating of regional axis and markets. Environmental Assessment for route development requires consideration of many factors, non least the environmental impact. Major environmental impacts such as harm to sensitive eco-systems, loss of productive agricultural lands, relocation of big figure of people, lasting break of local economic activities, demographic alteration, accelerated urbanization, and debut of diseases can be attributed to route development.

Most ECOWAS states have an enabling institutional and regulative model for EA in topographic point, even though available statistics is by and large low. The policies and guidelines from Ghana and Nigeria show that the part is good founded on environmental issues.

3.2.1 Project specific EAs

These are environmental appraisals that concentrate on the local and immediate environment with small or no respect for beyond the undertaking site and without sing bing future programs for the part. This is preponderantly the type of EA undertaken within the West African sub-region with respect to route building.

3.2.2 Programmatic specific EAs

This is besides a undertaking degree appraisal. However it has been developed for groups of undertakings with similar range, graduated table, type and good understood impacts

3.2.3 Drumhead environmental rating

This is a more limited environmental analysis and it focuses on specific impacts and their extenuation.

3.2.4 Regional EA

Regional environmental appraisals consider environmental effects with regard to the wider spacial context of the undertaking in inquiry. The aim is to “ measure the cumulative and possible effects that all undertakings proposed for a geographical country or administrative part might hold on the environment. “ ( 2 )

Strategic Environmental Assessments

Harmonizing to the World Bank proficient paper no. 376 these are formal systematic processs that are used to find the impacts to the environment from undertakings. These are impacts that may originate from new policies, national and regional development programs or major plan enterprises.

4. Public engagement

The wide aim of the Public Involvement Process is to supply governments with the first manus information within the undertaking corridor. Specifically public engagement is a utile beginning of information on cardinal impacts, possible extenuation steps and the designation and choice of undertaking options. Public Involvement, contributes to the successful design and undertaking execution. Surveies have shown that deficiency of communicating to the populace who are interested in or concerned with a peculiar undertaking before major determinations are made consequence in important information spread that mislead contrivers for comprehensive environmental appraisal. The signifier of communicating includes public audience or duologue and public engagement, which is a more synergistic and intensive procedure of stakeholder battle.

Discussions affecting governments and the populace

Inform the stakeholders about the proposed undertaking and its likely effects ;

Solicit their inputs, positions and concerns ; and

Solicit positions of the populace in the EA and determination devising

More significantly affect the local folks in making a sense of ownership of the undertaking.

Ea procedures are undertaken through audience instead than engagement. Public engagement in the signifier forum and public hearing provide an chance for those straight affected by the proposed undertaking to show their positions sing the proposal and its environmental and societal impacts.

Undertaking impacting the autochthonal

Undertaking necessitating colony or land expropriation

Undertakings for specific beneficiary group

Undertakings that produces economic adversity for neighbouring communities e.g. jeopardizing wellness, increasing traffic or changing the local resource base

The cardinal aims of public engagement are to:

aˆ? obtain local and traditional cognition that may be utile for determination devising ;

aˆ? help the governments for options and extenuation steps

aˆ? take all negative impacts into consideration and maximised them

aˆ? cut down struggle through the early designation of controversial affairs

aˆ? improve transparence and answerability of decision-making ; and

aˆ? addition public assurance in the EA procedure.

4.1 Procedures of public engagement

Public engagement in the EA procedure involves the undermentioned, information and presentment, engagement and dialogue, and audience.

4.1.1 Information

Public presentment is a meaningful communicating, on its ain, information revelation is non a sufficient proviso in public engagement for an EIA of a major proposal.

Consultation denotes an exchange of information designed to seek the positions of stakeholders on a proposal and its impacts.

4.1.2 Engagement

Engagement is a signifier of synergistic with the populace in turn toing the issues, set uping countries of understanding and dissension and seeking to make common places.

Negotiation among stakeholders is an alternate difference declaration instrument, which is based on joint fact-finding, consensus edifice and common adjustment of different involvements.

4.1.3 Consultation

Public engagement in EA is mostly of audience. However, engagement will be appropriate in many fortunes, for illustration. In the West Africa sub-region proviso is made for mediation or dialogue facilitated by a impersonal 3rd party. In rule, these attacks to public engagement in EA are typical and comparatively separate. However, they may be used in combination ; for illustration, audience and engagement can be appropriate at different phases of the same EA procedure.

4.2 Target Groups and Range of Stakeholders

The scope of stakeholders involved in the Environmental Impact Assessment of infrastructural development in the West Africa sub-region is identified as follows:

aˆ? the people – persons, groups and communities – who are affected by the proposal ;

aˆ? the advocate and other undertaking donees ;

aˆ? authorities bureaus ;

aˆ? NGOs, CSO and other involvement groups ;

4.2.1 Local people

The heads, sentiment leaders, work forces and the adult females groupings who the proposal affected in community ever want to cognize what is proposed ; what the likely impacts are ; and how their concerns will be understood and taken into history. They want confidences that their positions will be carefully listened to and considered on their virtues. They want advocates to turn to their concerns. They besides have cognition of the local environment and community that can be tapped for baseline informations.

4.2.2 Advocates

Advocates will wish to determine the proposal to give it the best opportunity of success. Often, this involves seeking to make public apprehension and credence of the proposal through the proviso of basic information. More creatively, undertaking design can be improved through utilizing public inputs on options and extenuation and understanding local cognition and values.

4.2.3 Government bureaus

The authorities bureaus involved in the EIA procedure will desire to hold their policy and regulative duties addressed in impact analysis and extenuation consideration. For the competent authorization, an effectual public engagement programme can intend the proposal may be less likely to go controversial in the ulterior phases of the procedure. For the responsible EIA bureau, the concern will be whether or non the public engagement procedure conforms to demands and processs.

4.2.4 NGOs/CSO

Remarks from NGOs/CSO and others like drivers brotherhood provide a meaningful input for the procedures of EA, their positions may besides be helpful when there are troubles with affecting local people by given alternate position.

4.3 Factors that constrain public engagement

Factors constrain public engagement in the West African sub-region

Local values/culture – behavioral norms or cultural traditions can move as a barrier to public engagement or exclude those who do non desire to differ publically with dominant groups.

Poverty – engagement means clip spent off from income-producing undertakings, and favours the wealthy.

Remote and rural scenes – increased or dispersed colony distances make communicating more hard and expensive.

Illiteracy – engagement will non happen if print media is used.

Languages – in some states a figure of different linguistic communications or idioms may be spoken, doing communicating hard.

Legal systems – may be in struggle with traditional systems and do confusion about rights and duties over resource usage and entree.

Interest groups – bring conflicting and divergent positions and vested involvements.

4.4 Decision

Public engagement in environmental appraisal procedures and route undertakings be aftering consequence in effectual execution and successful executing of the undertaking in most of the West African states and hence, governments must implement it policies in every undertaking that has a negative impact on the environment.

5. Prioritisation of the important environmental impacts of route undertaking strategies.

Road undertakings, like any infrastructural development, are to convey better conditions of life and to better the socio-economic activities of the people. With its positive facets as mentioned, they may besides hold important negative impacts on nearby communities and the natural environment if non planned for. The environment, people and belongingss on the right-of-way of route undertakings may be significantly impacted straight or indirectly, positively or negatively every bit good as short-run or long-run.

Environmental Impact Assessment ( EIA ) for the development and/or betterment of roads is a formal and systemic procedure of identifying, quantifying every bit good as avoiding or supplying mitigating factors to all possible impacts they could convey to the people and the environment. The aim of EIA therefore is to set up a baseline of bing conditions in the undertaking countries and to measure proactively the possible impact and associated impacts, including wellness and socio-economic, of any propose route building, rehabilitation and operation on the country.

5.1 Impact types

The three classs of environmental impacts harmonizing to cause of the impact originating from route development undertakings are direct, indirect and cumulative impacts. Direct impact could ensue from land ingestion, remotion of flora and rupture of farming area. Inventory of this type of impact is easy to transport because the cause-effect relationship is normally obvious.

On the other manus, indirect impact which is besides known as secondary, third or concatenation impacts are normally linked closely to the undertaking. They may hold more serious effects on the environment than direct impacts. Indirect impacts are really hard to mensurate, but are of import because they have the inclination to impact larger geographical countries of the environment than anticipated over clip. This could include debasement of surface H2O quality by the eroding of land cleared as a consequence of new route. There is besides the impact of increased deforestation of an country, stemming from easier ( more profitable ) transit of logs to market, or the inflow of colonists. In countries such as Africa where wild game is plentiful, new roads development frequently lead to the rapid depletion of animate beings due to poaching.

Accumulative impact consequences from environmental alteration procedure which may originate from any of the four following types of events, individual big events in a large undertaking, multiple interconnected events ie route undertakings within a part, ruinous sudden events ( major landslide into a river system ) , incremental, widespread and slow alteration following a ill designed culvert or drainage system along a long route widening through H2O shed. The impact could besides be harm to roadside flora by vehicles and pes traffic and dirt left unprotected. Subsequent rainfall causes eroding and siltation of nearby H2O classs.

5.2 Impact badness

The making of environmental impacts by type of consequence is non sufficient, instead the earnestness of the impacts is besides weighty. The most terrible impacts are to be considered, and they either be avoided or equal steps should be taken to cut down their effects. It is really easy to quantify the magnitude of impacts for physical effects, such as land cleared, trees removed and places affected. It is more hard to quantify effects on biological environment ( the type of home ground lost, for illustration ) and it is really complex every bit far as the effects on people are concerned. For some impacts, merely a qualitative description of the consequence is possible.

5.3 Road Schemes Impact on the Environment.

The effects of route strategies in West African states over the old ages have both positive and negative impacts on the environment and the people. These consequence from building, care and operation of the installations. The most important project-related impacts are those related to site readying activities, building and commissioning and operation and care. The positive impacts ranges from betterment on the lives of the people by easy of motion to rapid economic growing along the route corridor. While some negative impacts tend to stay much longer after the completion of the undertaking include those on the physical and natural environment every bit good as Human and socio-economic environment.

The World Bank ‘s enchiridion on ‘Road and Environment ‘ identified legion impacts of route undertakings to the environment. However the following identified in order of importance ( badness ) of environmental impacts of route undertaking schemes in West African part.

5.3.1 Human and socio-economic environment

The most important impact of route strategies in West African states are the impacts to the people and the socio-economic environment. Over the old ages route development signalled development and open-up countries of the states on socio-economic activities. The societal interaction of the people changed in most instances. If the route development is decently planned, they bring benefits to the environing communities, through lower conveyance costs, better entree to markets, goods, occupations or services such as wellness and instruction.

The debut of a new route or the broadening of an bing route frequently cause breaks to local interactions. Road undertakings frequently lead to alterations in the community environment environing the route, which influences assorted facets of life styles, travel forms and societal every bit good as economic activities. It is hence indispensable to recognize and be after for the direction of these impacts.

The more important impacts that affect the community as an economic and societal entity and those holding closely related impacts, which may hold community-wide effects but tend to get their significance from their effects on persons are discussed below.

Community life and economic activities: The impacts are rupture of communities, invasion of local community activities, beltway roads have both negative and positive impacts, traditional manners of conveyance, agricultural activities, touristry is affected positively and negatively, civilization daze every bit good as gentrification. An case of this is in the dualisation of Abuja-Kaduna-Kano route in Nigeria. It is 420 Km dual-carriageway wishing the Federal Capital of Nigeria, Abuja, with the Kano in the Northern of the state. In the procedure to accomplish good alliance most colony were relocated and things have ne’er been the same boulder clay day of the month.

Land acquisition and relocation: The impacts to be noticed are sale or acquisition of places, belongingss and concerns, societal break and economic loss. Example of this impact is the dualisation of Abuja-Keffi route in Nigeria. It is a sixty-four Km dual-carriageway which passes through a dumbly populated colony near Abuja. Several places and belongingss were destroyed for the development of the route. Although the authorities compensated the people, things are ne’er the same for so many of them up to day of the month.

Autochthonal or traditional populations: The people are affected by loss of traditional sense of individuality, loss of supports and misdemeanor of traditionally-exercised land rights, wellness and societal jobs, perturbations to bing ecological balance and Cultural heritage. The impacts are harm caused by route building and related plants such as preies and borrow sites and unregulated entree to cultural heritage sites.

Aestheticss impacts on cultural memorials and archeological sites include positive impacts to amenity value originating from improved entree to sites recognised for their cultural value, and on the scientific, historic and societal values originating from the add-on of interesting sites antecedently unknown or overlooked, and updating of the parts heritage.

Aestheticss and landscapes: The negative impacts are expressed by a deficiency of harmoniousness with natural terrain and morphology of the landscape, hydrology, flora, construction and form of the landscape, urban or village countries and architectural or cultural heritage.

Noise: The noise associated with route development has negative impacts on, Human public assistance, is affected in changing grades, both physiologically and psychologically ; wildlife perturbations, noise prevents many carnal species from nearing or traversing route corridors because they are afraid ; quiver, induced by the resonance of traffic noise can hold a damaging consequence on constructions standing near the route.

Health and Safety: The development of roads may increase the frequence of route accidents ensuing in deceases, hurts and harm to belongingss. This is common where roads traverse colonies. The velocities on the freshly improved roads tends to be high doing accident a frequent happening along the main road. This is common in all major main roads in West African states. Roads building has besides known to impact on the wellness of the people through sex transmitted diseases. Workers should be motivated to see their households every bit frequent as possible while on the undertaking.

5.3.2 Physical and natural environment ( Biophysical environment )

The assorted abiotic constituents of this environment are dirt, H2O and air, while the biotic dwellers are vegetations and zoologies. This environment is concerned with biodiversity, which refers to the wealth of species and ecosystem in a given country and of familial information within populations, and is of great importance at planetary and local degrees. Areas holding high biodiversity are prized as depots of familial stuff which form the footing of untold Numberss and measures of nutrients, drugs and other utile merchandises. The more species there are, the greater the resource available for acceptance and usage by world. Speciess which are pushed to extinction are gone everlastingly ; they are ne’er once more available for usage.

Dirt and eroding impacts: Soil is an of import constituent of the natural environment, and is a primary medium for many biological and human activities, including agribusiness. In the route itself, in borrow cavities or around rivers and watercourses, harm might happen in several topographic points, doing loss to different groups of people. This include this loss of productive dirt, eroding ( destabilization of inclines, side-tipping of spoil stuffs and H2O flow recreations every bit good as inordinate H2O flows ) , taint of dirt, Chain and cumulative impacts. The terrain in some parts of West African states tends to bespeak the badness of this impact. In Nigeria for case most of south and North-East are erosion prone. Road building mostly aggravates this procedure where equal care is non carried out.

Water resources impacts: Roads ever intersect drainage basin, which causes change to the local hydrology, taking to come up H2O flow alteration, concentrating flows at certain points ( additions velocity, may do implosion therapy, eroding, siltation ) , land H2O flow alteration ( Excavation can take down the H2O tabular array, while embankments can raise the H2O tabular array ) , H2O quality debasement ( deposit, spills of chemicals, exhaust emanations, Sur wear, salting during winter )

Air quality impacts: The emanation pollutant by vehicles has world-wide impacts and contributes greatly to the entire atmospheric pollution generated by people. Emissions can besides come from industrial works operation, power coevals, warming, natural events, such as volcanic eruptions and Airmass contaminations from vehicles operation.

These contaminations have really serious negative impacts on human wellness, zoology and the environment.

Fauna and Flora impacts: The direct impacts are habitat loss and atomization, rupture, corridor limitations and handiness.

The indirect impacts are ecological disequilibrium, taint of the biology, transmittal of diseases. The effects on different types of ecosystems are forest, aquatic, desert, coastal, savannah, mountain, grassland, cave and tundra.

The people of West Africa needs development and most significantly infrastructural development including roads. The positive impact of route strategies are on the socio-economic of the environment. However equal commissariats are necessary to avoid or extenuate the negative impacts of building, rehabilitation and care plants to the people and environment.

6. Economic rating of impact of route undertaking on environment

Road building plants are normally conceived based on possible derivable benefits. Benefits of a transit investing are the direct, positive effects of that undertaking ; that is to state, the desirable things gettable by straight puting in the undertaking. For illustration, the betterment may cut down the figure or badness of clangs, extinguish long holds during extremum hours, or cut down circuitry of travel ( supply a shorter path ) .

Decision shapers have to weigh these benefits against the costs of the undertaking. This involves the measuring of all the benefits and all the costs of the undertaking. A undertaking has to be decently justified by set uping that the benefits exceed the costs. This means that the quality of this analysis is really of import for policy shapers to do good determinations. Weighing the expected cost of a undertaking against the expected benefits requires rating of both costs and benefits.

6.1 Cost Benefit Analysis

Harmonizing to the concern lexicon, cost benefit analysis is procedure of quantifying cost and benefits of a undertaking and those of its options, in order to hold a individual graduated table of comparing for indifferent rating. While cost is the entire money, clip and resort associated with a undertaking, benefit is the desirable result or consequence from the undertaking.

The traditional cost benefit assessment of a undertaking requires gauging either the net nowadays value, internal rate of return or benefit-cost ratio of the undertaking.

The Net Present Value which is the widely used is merely a rating method used in undertakings rating, which compares the Present value of future benefits the investors receive from the undertaking against the Present value of the investings needed.

The existent cost of a route undertaking should include the cost of its impact on the environment. Monetary values of the impacts need to be known in order to carry on a proper cost benefit analysis where all existent costs and benefits, including their impact on the environment are to the full accounted for.

A really of import facet of Cost Benefit Analysis ( CBA ) is that ideally it requires economic values every bit far as possible for all goods, services and environmental effects associated with a given undertaking or policy. Where a market for a good or service exists, the value can be measured merely by its monetary value. However, for many types of environmental “ goods ” ( e.g. clean air ) there are merely no markets and no discernible monetary value, so people have to fall back to other methods to value the “ goods ” . This rating is frequently complicated and associated with great uncertainness.

Cost-benefit analysis is used to turn to merely those types of options where the results can be measured in footings of their pecuniary values.

Therefore the results of the traditional cost benefit analysis demand to be balanced by information from the rating environmental impacts of route building.

Unlike the physical cost of a route undertaking, seting pecuniary values to its impacts is non easy. It involves the rating of impacts on both the bio physical and the socio economic environment.

Evaluation is a two measure procedure. First, it involves the finding of what the impacts are, who is affected and in what ways. Second, it requires the quantification of the impacts.

There are many methods available for economic rating of environmental impacts. The rating to be undertaken and the appropriate methods to be chosen depend on the information handiness and other fortunes related to the undertaking.

6.2 Environmental Impact Evaluation in Nigeria/Ghana part

Nigeria and Ghana are developing states. In developing states, handiness of informations is a large job and where they are available, they are normally hapless. The World Bank proficient paper WTP376 recommends that in such state of affairss where informations are hapless, an alternate economic format should be used. This is the cost effectivity attack which does non monetise benefits but merely calculates the cost of alternate ways of making set ends.

Harmonizing to WTP376 it involves the scene of some end or mark and the subsequent appraisal of the capital and operating cost deductions of making that end, via a figure of alternate paths or designs.

Although cost-effectiveness analysis is non a straightforward rating technique, it can however be utile. This attack focuses wholly on run intoing a preset criterion or end given limited resources ( for illustration, limited financess, unequal informations, or deficient cognition of the nature and nexus between environmental harm and human wellness and public assistance ) . After sing all the options, cost effectivity analysis is used to find the most effectual manner to run into a end. The major difference between cost-effectiveness analysis and other attacks is that no effort is made to monetise the benefits. It is therefore a extremely utile attack for undertakings with benefits that are hard to mensurate in pecuniary footings.

The first measure in cost-effectiveness analysis is to repair a mark. In the environmental field it may be a certain per centum of agricultural land which the route must non transcend. Once a mark is chosen, cost-effectiveness analysis is carried out by analyzing the assorted options by which the mark can be achieved. This may affect analysing the capital and operating costs of different paths for the route. The basic end, nevertheless, is to place the least-cost option which will accomplish the end selected.

Since cost-effectiveness analysis does non give an estimation of benefits that can be derived from run intoing a given criterion or end, it is possible that even the most cost-efficient ( least-cost ) option of run intoing a rigorous criterion is still excessively expensive.

The aims of the intercession must be clearly stated and be portion of a broad plan of aims ( such as poorness relief ) ; and the intercession represents the least-cost manner of achieving the declared aims.