By Kampala Post Reporter
National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) has issued a certificate to CNOOC Uganda Limited for the Environment and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) for the Kingfisher Development project.
Before commencement of any activity, a comprehensive ESIA is undertaken to identify the social and environmental impacts of a project as well as the measures to reduce the impacts and maximize the benefits.
On 16th September 2013, CNOOC Uganda Limited, the operator of the Kingfisher project, received a production license from the Government of Uganda. The company then embarked on ESIA process for the on-site construction of the Kingfisher Oil Field facilities like the CPF, Camps, Yards and Parking areas, Feeder Pipeline among others. The ESIA was focused on social, Health, Safety and Environmental aspects like air quality, noise and vibration, hydrology, surface water, waste, biodiversity among others. Data was collected, impact assessment undertaken.
In observance of the National Environment Act cap 153 and in fulfilment of the National Environment (EIA) regulations, on 21st December, 2018, CNOOC Uganda Limited submitted the Kingfisher Field Development Area ESIA to NEMA for review, recommendations and approval. NEMA publically invited all the relevant key stakeholders using various media like print, online and broadcast to give their comments and eventually held public hearings and consultations on the 19th and 21st June 2019 in Kikuube and Hoima districts respectively. This provided an opportunity for the host community and the general public to give comments and recommendations which they feel should be considered during project development.
However, in accordance with the provisions of Part X of the National Environment Act No.5 of 2019, NEMA subjected the KFDA ESIA to a review process that revealed issues that required CNOOC to address before a final approval decision can be made. It is from this background that CNOOC Uganda Limited made revisions in line with the detailed review findings that were issued by NEMA for making necessary improvements on the ESIA.
After considering all the required revisions, CNOOC Uganda Limited resubmitted the KFDA ESIS 18th November, 2019 for the final approval decision to be made. And subsequently all issues were addressed by CNOOC Uganda Limited to NEMA’s satisfaction hence culminating into the award of the ESIA certificate.
“This is a great milestone for CNOOC Uganda Limited and the development of oil and gas project in Uganda. It is a step closer to FID and realization of first oil,” said Mr. Zhao Shunqiang, the President, CNOOC Uganda Limited.
“We are pleased to issue this certificate in line with the principle of sustainable development. NEMA shall continue to maintain an efficient mechanism for sustainable environment and natural resource management,” remarked Dr. Tom Okurut, the NEMA Executive Director.
CNOOC Uganda Limited is committed to the efficient and effective development of the oil resource in an environmentally friendly and sustainable manner. CNOOC Uganda Limited ensures strict adherence to the regulations and guidelines and clear commitment to apply international best practices to the development of the oil resources, particularly the International Finance Corporation (IFC) Performance Standards, also known for being the most stringent standards on environment and biodiversity.