Environmental Impact Statement for the Alimit Pumped-Storage Project (2018)

An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was prepared for the 250MW Hydropower Plant by SN Aboitiz Power – Ifugao, Inc, (SNAPI). The project is a 53.61-hectare property located in Barangays Olilicon and Tupaya in Lagawe, Ifugao which is considered an environmentally critical area. The Alimit Pumped-Storage Project is in line with the Department of Energy’s endeavors to accelerate the development of renewable energy resources and will help address the electricity demand in Luzon.

As part of the preparation of the EIS, Aperçu Consultants Inc. was engaged in the following activities:

Land Module

Land Use Classification

Reviews of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) and satellite imagery complemented with ground truthing mapping were used to assess if the project was in line with the land use of the area. 

Pedology

Soil samples were collected from representative stations in the project site and analyzed in the laboratory. Results provided insights on the potential impacts of the project’s activities to the pedology of the site.

Geology and Geomorphology

Geologic characteristics and various hazard maps were assessed to see potential hazards and its impacts on the project.

Terrestrial Ecology 

Vegetation and fauna assessments were done to identify critical species (endemic, threatened, or vulnerable) as well as to serve as a basis when monitoring for changes in species due to project activities.

Water Module

Hydrology

Physical characteristics and flows of the Alimit River based on the drainage system and delineated watershed were used to assess the potential of the project to induce flooding or deplete local water resources. Outcomes of the assessment were used to manage and mitigate potential adverse impacts.

Water Quality

Surface water and groundwater were assessed for the baseline conditions of the watercourses to serve as a basis for monitoring future impacts of the project on the surface and groundwater quality.

Freshwater Ecology

Physical characteristics and biological communities (algae, zooplankton, benthic macroinvertebrates, and fish) were assessed to see the general conditions of the freshwater environment and determine potential impacts from the construction to operation of the project.

Air Module

Ambient Air Quality

Air dispersion modeling was done to assess impacts of construction to the ambient air. Air samples were collected and analyzed. The results were used to inform all future air quality and track the project’s compliance with the Clean Air Act.  

Ambient Noise

Existing sonic profile and noise impacts of the construction phase were compared to see if sound levels were within Environmental Quality Standards for Noise in General Areas.

People Module

Socio-economics

Impact assessments were focused on the resources most affected by the project from its pre-construction, construction, and operational stages. 

Health Study

A health impact investigation was done to identify risks and rank them for its probability to occur and the severity of its impact. 

Cultural Heritage

Baseline heritage conditions were assessed and the potential impacts were evaluated in order to mitigate potentially adverse impacts, where appropriate.

Traffic Study

Existing transportation and traffic situation in the vicinities of the project site were evaluated to mitigate potentially adverse impacts and assess site accessibility.

Environmental Risk Assessment

All possible risks associated with the project as well as the probability of occurrence of accidents and their magnitude were assessed. Results from the assessment were used avoid and reduce consequences of the project’s activities.

The Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) for the project was issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on November 2018 with ECC Reference No. ECC-CO-1603-0011. The ECC is available at the following link.

A copy of the Environmental Impact Statement is available at the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) website at the following link.

Environmental Impact Statement for the Alimit Hydroelectric Power Plant (Alimit HEPP, 2019)

An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was prepared for the 140MW hydroelectric power plant (HEPP) in the Municipalities of Aguinaldo, Lagawe, Lamut, and Mayoyao in Ifugao. The project has two major generation components, the Alimit HEPP which is a 80 m dam with a total 120MW energy generation and the Olilicon HEPP which is a 14 m high weir with a 20MW energy generation. This project is in line with the Department of Energy’s goal to accelerate and develop more sources of renewable energy to meet Luzon’s electricity demand.

As part of the preparation of the EIS, Aperçu Consultants, Inc. was engaged in the following activities:

Land Module

Land Use

Reviews of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) of the covered municipalities, comparison of project site aerial view and NAMRIA maps, ground truthing, and  follow up site surveys were done to ensure the compatibility of the project with the land use of the area.

Geology & Geomorphology

Assessments of the geological characteristics and natural hazards of the area in relation to the siting and development of the project was done to evaluate the capacity of rocks to support the dam and related structures with consideration to hazards such as earthquakes, erosion, and mass movements. 

Pedology

Literature review and laboratory analyses of the soil was done to assess the soil erosion potential of the project site. Each soil unit was also rated for its erosion susceptibility by assessing contributing factors such as rainfall, slope erodibility, vegetation or land use, and slope. 

Terrestrial Ecology

Flora and faunal assessments were done to identify critical species (endemic, threatened, or vulnerable). Results were used to assess the project’s impacts during its construction and operational phases as well as provide preventive and mitigating measures to the identified potential impacts. A biodiversity management plan was also developed for this project. 

Water Module

Hydrology and Hydrogeology

The physical characteristics and flows of the Alimit River and Ibulao River were identified based on the drainage system and delineated watersheds. Potential project impacts due to changes in drainage morphology, potential to induce flooding, reduction in river volumetric flood, and depletion of water resources/water use competition were assessed. Results from the assessments were used to develop management and mitigating plans for the potential adverse impacts.

Water Quality

Physico-chemical characteristics of the upstream and downstream of Rivers Alimit and Ibulao were done. The water quality survey provided information on the baseline conditions as well as determined potential impacts of the project and its activities to the surface and groundwater quality. Management and mitigating measures of potential impacts were based on the water quality assessments.

Freshwater Ecology

Baseline surveys of the freshwater environment in Rivers Alimit and Ibulao included algae, zooplankton, benthic macroinvertebrates, and fish. Fisheries data and general uses of water sources were also identified through interviews with locals. These assessments were used to determine potential impacts of the project and its activities as well as provide suitable mitigating and preventive measures.

Air Module

Climate & Meteorology

Existing meteorological conditions and the potential impacts of the Alimit HEPP project to local climate and greenhouse gas emissions were identified. Mitigating measures were developed for the identified potential impacts on the local community and in relation to climate change. 

Ambient Air Quality

Total suspended particulates (TSP) and particulate matter of 10 micrometers (PM10) were measured and compared to various air quality standards. Air dispersion models were done to project maximum ground-level concentrations of TSP and PM10 as well as air pollution “hotspots” during the construction phase. Results were used to identify mitigating measures to minimize potential impacts on the ambient air quality.

Ambient Noise

Existing noise conditions were measured while noise impacts of the project and its activities were projected. Mitigating measures were recommended for the construction and operation phases of the project.

People Module

Baseline socio-economic, health, cultural heritage, and traffic of the province, municipalities, and barangays affected by the Alimit HEPP project was identified. Assessments focused on the people living in the direct impact area as well as resources that would be significantly affected by the project. Results were used to identify suitable social impact mitigating measures as well as identify benefits of the project to the local community.

Environmental Risk Assessment

This assessment focused on determining the probability of occurrence of accidents and their magnitude. Specific assessments for potential dam break  (i.e. breach or rupture) were also done. Possible mitigating measures were provided for the various risks identified in this assessment.

The Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) for the project was issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in February 2019 with ECC Reference No. ECC-CO-1603-0012. The ECC is available at the following link.