Project Name: Hongsa Power Plant, Mining Development and Transmission Line
Firm Name: TEAM Consulting Engineering and Management Co., Ltd.
Location: Hongsa District, Sayaboury Province, Lao PDR
Project Owner: Banpu Power Company Limited
Type of Project: Energy
The project comprises a large open pit lignite mine which will supply fuel for a power plant consisting of three (3) 626 MW (gross) generating units. Water supply for the power plant will be from 2 reservoirs on Nam Louak (upstream of Muang Hongsa) and Nam Kene (downstream of Muang Hongsa). A double circuit 500 kV transmission line will be built over a length of approx. 67 kilometres to the Thai/Laos border to deliver power to the EGAT power grid.
Adverse impacts and assets acquisition due to the project development include; relocation of 367 households from 5 villages (1,920 people), loss of homestead, farmland, cultural/religious places and public assets, social stress caused by displacement and alteration of livelihood of those project affected households.
Environmental impacts from project operation on people living in communities in the project vicinity (within 5 kilometres radius from the project site) are such as disturbance from dust, noise, labour influx, immigration of workforce and settlement of new communities in nearby areas.
TEAM was engaged to conduct the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), Social Impact Assessment (SIA) and preparing Environmental Management Plan (EMP) and Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) for the project. The EIA, SIA, EMP and RAP reports had been submitted to Water Resource and Environment Administration of Lao PDR and were approved on 29 November 2007.
TEAM is currently the project consultant for the EMP and RAP implementation, with works divided into 2 phases. Phase I focuses on the implementation of RAP and EMP, particularly the establishment and operation of Resettlement and Environmental Management Unit (REMU). Technical support and monitoring will be emphasized in Phase 2. This will ensure that the environmental impacts during the construction and operation will be efficiently mitigated, and all of the affected households will be appropriately relocated to the resettlement sites. Moreover, TEAM is conducting tender design for water resource system including Nam Louak and Nam Kene dams and reservoirs together with water conveyance system and East lake.
Highlight of the Project:
The outstanding features of the project is that it comprises various types of components and needs multi-disciplinary expertise in the study and implementation. The consultancy service also involves public consultation and public participation with all project affected people. All of the comments and recommendations received during public consultation and participation have been taken into consideration and properly responded by the project proponent. The Hongsa coal-fired power plant is expected to be in commercial operation by 2013.