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Saturday, October 1, 2022

NEMA: Oil and Gas Projects Safe for the Environment

The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) has clarified on information concerning the Environment and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) reports for oil and gas projects in Uganda.

The clarification follows the ongoing discussion relating to the European Union Parliaments’ resolutions on oil and gas projects in Uganda.

NEMA in a statement dated 19th September 2022, assured Ugandans, stakeholders and the Global Community that the environment and social impacts of oil and gas projects in Uganda were comprehensively assessed and adequately mitigation measures put in place.

According to the statement, the ESIA for Kingfisher, Tilenga and the EACOP projects were done in accordance with the laws of Uganda and full consideration of and with due regard to all the agreements that Uganda is party to.

NEMA also stated that the Environment and Social Impact Assessments followed the time tested and conventionally agreed principles of the Environment and Social Impact Mitigation hierarchy which involves avoidance of sensitive Eco-systems, mitigating manageable impacts including reducing of impacts, environmental resolutions as well as offsetting of residual impacts.

The statement indicates that the process was done in consultation with relevant lead agencies and other stakeholders including conducting public hearings for all the three projects.

“The process gave adequate opportunity to all stakeholders to provide input into the process including the development of resettlement action plans,” statement indicated.

Regarding the carbon footprint for the oil and gas projects, each of the projects quantified greenhouse gas emission estimates as part of the ESIA review process, and these estimates guided review of engineering designs to ensure low carbon emission pathways.

“The pipe will be buried, coated to prevent rusting and has inbuilt automated leakage detection mechanisms,” NEMA added.

The authority emphasized that Uganda’s economic development path is a green one as guided by the National Green Growth Development Strategy, 2017.

 “Whereas the EU Parliament resolution claims that EACOP will traverse protected areas in Uganda and Tanzania, the pipeline will only cross one central forest reserve,” the authority emphasized.

The Authority further assured the public on her mandate to continue to promote green Development of the economy and efforts to achieve early energy transition through initiatives like emission free electric automobiles, hydro-power and solar energy development.

Steve Mungereza
Steve Mungereza
Sociopolitical Analyst. Coverage of National and Regional news stories.

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