Chapter 10. Environment impact assessment




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CHAPTER 10. Environment impact assessment

    1. Introduction


An assessment of natural and social environment along the project road has been carried out. The environmental impacts due to the project has been studied and considered for mitigation through incorporation of suitable remedial measures in the design. The key environmental issues along with the remedial measures suggested are presented in the following sections.
    1. Project Influence Area


The area of influence of the project is defined considering MoEF requirements ( EIA notification, 14th Sept.2006) and other statutory requirements and the baseline conditions within the defined area documented. As per MoEF guidelines for conducting EIA; the geographical scope of the EIA study will be of 15km radius for highway projects. However, since the project involves widening of existing highway, the direct influence of the project is restricted within the Right of Way (ROW) only. The baseline status has been documented at the ROW level but major environmental features like Reserve Forest, national parks, wildlife sanctuary, Coastal Zones and also physical features like physiography, hydrology, soil were studied/ recorded within 15 km radius of the project road.

The project corridor Jetpur-Somnath, NH8D, starts at Jetpur in Rajkot district, traverses through Jetpur taluka of Rajkot district which further runs across Junagadh district through, Vanthali, Keshod, Veraval and connects the holy place of Lord Somnath temple right on the sea coast at Veraval-Somnath. Starting point of the corridor is from junction of NH 8B and NH 8D near Jetpur town and pass through commercial and residential zone of the town on both the sides of the road. End point of the corridor is just approach to the Somnath temple on the western coast line.

The study region- Project Influence Area, has been delineated into two zones of influence based on the magnitude of impacts anticipated in them.


  • The Direct Impact Zone includes the Right of Way i.e. the additional strip of land required for the road works including shoulders, support slopes and the necessary clear zone, required for expansion of the road. The Right of Way for the proposed project is 60m.

  • The Indirect Impact Zone which includes talukas situated within 15km on either side of the RoW 1. Project corridor and road network system is presented in Figure 10-1.



Figure 10 1: Project Corridor

The distribution of villages within these 2 demarcated areas are presented in Table 10.1.



Table 10 1: Project Impact and Influence Areas

S. No.

Study Area

District

Taluk

Village

1.

Project Impact Area (Corridor of Direct Impact)

Rajkot

Jetpur

9

Junagadh

Junagadh

21

Vanthali

16

Keshod

18

Mangrol

4

Malia

17

Veraval

20

2.

Project Influence Area (10 km radius from Project corridor)

Rajkot

Jetpur

31

Dhoraji

7

Junagadh

Junagadh

22

Vanthali

30

Keshod

30

Malia

30

Veraval

16

Bhesan

7

Manavadar

7

Mendarda

6

Mangrol

17

Source: Census of India, 2001
    1. Environmental Clearance Requirements


The existing legislation and policies relevant to the project at the National and State levels have been reviewed and identified. The clearance requirement for the project at various stages of the project is described below:

Table 10 2: Statutory Clearance Requirements

Sl No

Clearance Required for

Statute under which clearance is required

Statutory Authority

1.

Environmental Clearance

EIA Notification, 2006 issued under EP Act, 1986

Ministry of Environment and Forest, GOI, New Delhi

2.

Coastal Zone Clearance

Coastal Zone Regulation,1991

Gujarat Coastal Management Authority, Ministry of Environment and Forest, GOI, New Delhi

3.

Permission for felling of Roadside trees

The Saurashtra Felling of Trees (Infliction of Punishment) Act 1951

Forest Department, Gujarat.

4.

No Objection Certificate


EIA Notification, 1994 issued under EP Act, 1986

Water (P&CP) Act, 1974 &

Air (P&CP) Act, 1981


Gujarat Pollution Control Board.

The present project alignment is a National Highway greater than 30 km in length and involves additional right of way greater than 20 m and hence has been considered under Category A. In view of this, a screening report along with Form 1 (duly filled in) and Draft Terms of Reference (TOR) has been submitted to the Ministry of Environment and Forests(MoEF) for their perusal and comment.

Thus Environmental clearance is required for the project (as per MOEF Notification, September 2006). Also, the Project corridor ends near Somnath temple which is few metres away from the western coastline. As a result, the corridor requires Coastal Zone clearance due to the influence of the tidal action on some rivers.


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