Environmental and Social Impact Assessment for a Modular Power Plants Project in Menengai, Nakuru County, Kenya: Impact Identification, Evaluation and Risk Analysis (Published)
This paper is an extract from the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment report for the Menengai modular geothermal power plants projects for Geothermal Development Company Limited. Geothermal Development entails exploration drilling, steam collection, construction of power generation units and power transmission lines. Preliminary phase of land acquisition, vegetation clearing, construction and power generation is likely to cause environmental disturbance. Integrated resource utilization and environmental conservation needs an effective and efficient environmental and social management plan in order to facilitate sustainable implementation of the proposed project. Impact identification and risk analysis for any proposed project, are key for they provide useful information to decision- makers. This paper aims to provide a valuation’s perspective on how to best design and execute the impact identification and risk analysis to achieve results that align mitigation with identified potential impacts of the proposed project activities. The process involved identifying where the interactions were likely to occur between the proposed project activities and the receiving environments. A modified Leopold Matrix (LM) integrated with Lohani & Thanh methods were used to identify and estimate the magnitudes and importance of the potential impacts. Cumulative impacts were estimated using consequence and probability ranking model adapted from the South African Department of Environmental Affairs’ guideline document on EIA regulations of 1998. The model predicts the significance of impacts by considering magnitude, duration, spatial scale and factoring in probability of the impact to occur. Based on results of analysis, the cumulative impacts ranged from minor to moderate and can be mitigated.
Keywords: Cumulative Impact, Environment, Impact Assessment, Modular Geothermal Power Generation Technology, Risk Analysis, Society