table of Contents

Executive Summary

1 Introduction

1.1 Background

1.2 Scope of Report

1.3 Organization Structure

2 EM&A Results

2.1 Dolphin Monitoring

2.2 Environmental Licenses and Permits

2.3 Summary of Exceedances of the Environmental Quality Performance Limit

2.4 Summary of Complaints, Notification of Summons and Successful Prosecutions

2.5 Comparison of EM&A Data with EIA Predictions

3 Review of EM&A Programme

3.1 Summary of Recommendations

4 Conclusions

 

 


 

Appendix A Project Organization for Environmental Works

Appendix B EM&A Monitoring Schedules

Appendix C Operational Phase Dolphin Monitoring Survey

Appendix D Cumulative Statistics On Exceedances, Complaints, Notifications of Summons and Successful Prosecutions

 

 

 

 

Executive Summary

Under Agreement No. HMWSD 1/2021 (EP), ERM-Hong Kong, Limited (ERM) has been appointed as the Environmental Team (ET) by the Highways Department (HyD) to undertake the implementation of post-construction monitoring for the Chinese White Dolphin (CWD) in accordance with Environmental Permit No. EP-354/2009/D for the Tuen Mun Chek Lap Kok Link Project (TM-CLK Link Project). AECOM Asia Company Limited was appointed by HyD as the Supervising Officer while Ramboll Hong Kong Ltd. was employed by HyD as the Independent Environmental Checker (IEC) and Environmental Project Office (ENPO).

The post-construction monitoring for the CWD commenced on June 2020 and completed in May 2022.

This is the Annual EM&A report presenting the EM&A works carried out during the period from 1 June 2021 to 31 May 2022 for the Agreement No. HMWSD 1/2021 (EP) Post-Construction Monitoring of Chinese White Dolphin (Line-transect Vessel Surveys) for Tuen Mun Chek Lap Kok Link in Northeast and Northwest Lantau Survey Area Investigation (the Contract) in accordance with the Updated EM&A Manual of the TM-CLK Link Contract.

In order to fulfil the EPs and EM&A Manuals requirements for TM-CLKL Project, Agreement No. HMWSD 1/2021 (EP) took over the responsibility for implementation of operational phase dolphin monitoring from Contract No. HY/2012/08 from 1 September 2021 to 31 May 2022.

A summary of monitoring and audit activities conducted in the reporting period is listed below:

Operational Phase Dolphin Monitoring 24 sessions

Summary of Breaches of Action/Limit Levels

Four (4) Limit Level exceedances were recorded for the post-construction (operational) dolphin monitoring between June 2021 and May 2022.

Environmental Complaints, Non-compliance & Summons

No environmental complaint, non-compliance with EIA recommendations, EP conditions and other requirements and environmental summons associated with the construction of this Contract was recorded in this reporting period.

Review of EM&A programme

The EM&A requirements have been reviewed and were considered as adequate and effective. No change to the requirements was considered to be necessary. The recommended environmental mitigation measures were also considered to be effective and efficient in reducing the potential environmental impacts associated with the construction of the Contract. No change was thus considered necessary.


1                             Introduction

1.1                         Background

According to the findings of the Northwest New Territories (NWNT) Traffic and Infrastructure Review conducted by the Transport Department, Tuen Mun Road, Ting Kau Bridge, Lantau Link and North Lantau Highway would be operating beyond capacity after 2016. This forecast has been based on the estimated increase in cross boundary traffic, developments in the Northwest New Territories (NWNT), and possible developments in North Lantau, including the Airport developments, the Lantau Logistics Park (LLP) and the Hong Kong Zhuhai Macao Bridge (HZMB). In order to cope with the anticipated traffic demand, two new road sections between NWNT and North Lantau Tuen Mun Chek Lap Kok Link (TM-CLKL) and Tuen Mun Western Bypass (TMWB) are proposed.

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of TM-CLKL (the Project) was prepared in accordance with the EIA Study Brief (No. ESB-175/2007) and the Technical Memorandum of the Environmental Impact Assessment Process (EIAO-TM). The EIA Report was submitted under the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance (EIAO) in August 2009. Subsequent to the approval of the EIA Report (EIAO Register Number AEIAR-146/2009), an Environmental Permit (EP-354/2009) for TM-CLKL was granted by the Director of Environmental Protection (DEP) on 4 November 2009, and EP variation (VEP) (EP-354/2009/A) was issued on 8 December 2010. Subsequent applications for variation of environmental permits (VEPs), EP-354/2009/B, EP-354/2009/C and EP-354/2009/D, were granted on 28 January 2014, 10 December 2014 and 13 March 2015, respectively.

Under Agreement No. HMWSD 1/2021 (EP), ERM-Hong Kong, Limited (ERM) has been appointed as the Environmental Team (ET) by the Highways Department (HyD) to undertaken the implementation of post-construction monitoring for the Chinese White Dolphin (CWD) in accordance with Environmental Permit No. EP-354/2009/D for the Tuen Mun Chek Lap Kok Link Project (TM-CLK Link Project). AECOM Asia Company Limited was appointed by HyD as the Supervising Officer while Ramboll Hong Kong Ltd. was employed by HyD as the Independent Environmental Checker (IEC) and Environmental Project Office (ENPO).

The post-construction monitoring for the CWD commenced on June 2021 and completed in May 2022.

In order to fulfil the EPs and EM&A Manuals requirements for TM-CLKL Project, Agreement No. HMWSD 1/2021 (EP) took over the responsibility for implementation of operational phase dolphin monitoring from Contract No. HY/2012/08 from 1 September 2021 to 31 May 2022.

1.2                         Scope of Report

This is the Annual EM&A Report under the Agreement No. HMWSD 1/2021 (EP) Post-Construction Monitoring of Chinese White Dolphin (Line-transect Vessel Surveys) for Tuen Mun Chek Lap Kok Link in Northeast and Northwest Lantau Survey Area Investigation. This report presents a summary of the environmental monitoring and audit works from 1 June 2021 to 31 May 2022.

1.3                         Organization Structure

The organization structure of the Contract is shown in Appendix A. The key personnel contact names and contact details are summarized in Table 1.1 below.

Table 1.1 Contact Information of Key Personnel

Party

Position

Name

Telephone

Fax

Highways Department

 

PC 16/SD

Sally W.M. Choi

2762 3643

3188 6614

SOR

(AECOM Asia Company Limited)

 

Senior Resident Engineer

K P Wong

 

 

2293 6403

 

 

2293 6300

 

 

ENPO / IEC

(Ramboll Hong Kong Ltd.)

ENPO Leader

 

Y.H. Hui

3465 2850

3465 2899

IEC

 

Mr. Brian Tam (1)

9700 6767

3465 2899

ET (ERM-HK)

ET Leader

Jasmine Ng

2271 3311

2723 5660

Note: Role and responsibilities as the IEC of the Contract was taken up by Mr. Brian Tam from 25 July 2022.

2                             EM&A Results

The EM&A programme required environmental monitoring for marine ecology. The EM&A requirements and related findings for the component are summarized in the following sections.

2.1                         Dolphin Monitoring

2.1.1                     Monitoring Requirements

Operational Phase dolphin monitoring is required to be conducted by a qualified dolphin specialist team to evaluate whether there have been any effects on the dolphins. According to the EM&A Manual, Operational Phase Monitoring on dolphin monitoring shall be undertaken based upon the frequency of forty-eight, one-day survey events at a frequency of 2 per month over a period of 24 months following cessation of the construction.

In order to fulfil the EM&A requirements and make good use of available resources, Agreement No. HMWSD 1/2021 (EP) has taken over the responsibility for implementation of dolphin monitoring from HZMB HKLR Contract No. HY/2011/03 since October 2019 and Contract No. HY/2012/08 since September 2021.

2.1.2                     Monitoring Equipment

Table 2.1 summarize the equipment used for the impact and operational phase dolphin monitoring.

Table 2.1 Dolphin Monitoring Equipment

Equipment

Model

Global Positioning System (GPS)

 

Garmin eTrex Legend

Camera

Canon EOS 7D model

 

Laser Binocular

Infinitor LRF 1000

 

Marine Binocular

7 x 50 Fuijnon marine binoculars

 

Vessel for Monitoring

15-m inboard vessel with an open upper deck (about 4.5 m above water surface)

2.1.3                     Monitoring Parameter, Frequencies & Duration

Dolphin monitoring should cover all transect lines in Northeast Lantau (NEL) and the Northwest Lantau (NWL) survey areas twice per month throughout the entire construction period and operational phase. The monitoring data should be compatible with, and should be made available for, long-term studies of small cetacean ecology in Hong Kong. In order to provide a suitable long-term dataset for comparison, identical methodology and line transects employed in baseline dolphin monitoring was followed in the impact dolphin monitoring and operational phase dolphin monitoring.

2.1.4                     Monitoring Location

The operational phase dolphin monitoring was carried out in the NEL and NWL along the line transect as depicted in Figure 2.1. The co-ordinates of all transect lines are shown in Table 2.2 below.

Table 2.2 Impact and Operational Phase Dolphin Monitoring Line Transect Co-ordinates

Line No.

Easting

Northing

Line No.

Easting

Northing

1

Start Point

804671

815456

13

Start Point

816506

819480

1

End Point

804671

831404

13

End Point

816506

824859

2

Start Point

805476

820800*

14

Start Point

817537

820220

2

End Point

805476

826654

14

End Point

817537

824613

3

Start Point

806464

821150*

15

Start Point

818568

820735

3

End Point

806464

822911

15

End Point

818568

824433

4

Start Point

807518

821500*

16

Start Point

819532

821420

4

End Point

807518

829230

16

End Point

819532

824209

5

Start Point

808504

821850*

17

Start Point

820451

822125

5

End Point

808504

828602

17

End Point

820451

823671

6

Start Point

809490

822150*

18

Start Point

821504

822371

6

End Point

809490

825352

18

End Point

821504

823761

7

Start Point

810499

822000*

19

Start Point

822513

823268

7

End Point

810499

824613

19

End Point

822513

824321

8

Start Point

811508

821123

20

Start Point

823477

823402

8

End Point

811508

824254

20

End Point

823477

824613

9

Start Point

812516

821303

21

Start Point

805476

827081

9

End Point

812516

824254

21

End Point

805476

830562

10

Start Point

813525

821176

22

Start Point

806464

824033

10

End Point

813525

824657

22

End Point

806464

829598

11

Start Point

814556

818853

23

Start Point

814559

821739

11

End Point

814556

820992

23

End Point

814559

824768

12

Start Point

815542

818807

24*

Start Point

805476*

815900*

12

End Point

815542

824882

24*

End Point

805476*

819100*

Remarks: The coordinates of several starting and ending points have been revised since August 2017 due to the presence of a work zone to the north of the airport platform with intense construction activities in association with the construction of the third runway expansion for the Hong Kong International Airport. Co-ordinates in red and marked with asterisk are revised co-ordinates of transect line.

2.1.5                     Monitoring Schedule for the Reporting Period

The dolphin monitoring schedules for the reporting period are shown in Appendix B.

2.1.6                     Results & Observations

Results of the operational phase dolphin monitoring between June 2021 and May 2022 were presented in this session.

A total of 3,378.22 km of survey effort was collected, with 99.89% of the total survey effort being conducted under favourable weather conditions (ie Beaufort Sea State 3 or below with good visibility) in the first year of operational phase monitoring. Amongst the two areas, 1,327.58 km and 2,050.64 km of survey effort were collected from NEL and NWL survey areas, respectively. The total survey effort conducted on primary and secondary lines were 2,341.24 km and 1,036.98 km, respectively. The survey efforts are summarized in Appendix C.

A total of 11 groups of 23 Chinese White Dolphin sightings were recorded during the 24 sets of surveys in the second year of operational phase monitoring. All sightings were made during on-effort search. Nine (9) on-effort sightings were made on primary lines, while two (2) other on-effort sightings were made on secondary lines. During this reporting year, all dolphin groups were sighted in NWL, while none of them were sighted in NEL.

Dolphin sighting distribution of the second year operational phase monitoring period June 2021 to May 2022 was compared to the ones during the baseline phase (February 2011 to January 2012), transitional phase (November 2012 to October 2013) and the first, second, third, fourth and fifth years of impact phase (November 2013 to October 2014, November 2014 to October 2015, November 2015 to October 2016, November 2017 to October 2018 and November 2018 to October 2019 respectively) and first year operational phase monitoring period June 2020 to May 2021. As TMCLKL construction works commenced in November 2013, a 12-month period between baseline phase and impact phase is defined as transitional phase.

During the 12-month operational phase monitoring period, the average daily encounter rates of Chinese White Dolphins were deduced in NEL and NWL survey areas, and compared to the ones deduced from the baseline and transitional phases as shown in Table 2.3.

 

 

Table 2.3 Average Daily Dolphin Encounter Rates

 

Encounter rate (STG)

(no. of on-effort dolphin sightings per 100 km of survey effort)

Encounter rate (ANI) (no. of dolphins from all on-effort sightings per 100 km of survey effort)

Northeast Lantau

Northwest Lantau

Northeast Lantau

Northwest Lantau

Operational Phase

(2021-22)

0.00

0.73 1.24

0.00

1.46 2.82

Operational Phase

(2020-21)

0.00

1.31 1.88

0.00

3.39 5.73

Impact Phase (2018-19)

0.00

1.42 1.80

0.00

3.62 4.93

Impact Phase (2017-18)

0.00

2.68 3.04

0.00

9.02 14.63

Impact Phase (2016-17)

0.00

2.35 2.62

0.00

8.57 11.05

Impact Phase (2015-16)

0.00

2.10 1.83

0.00

8.54 8.53

Impact Phase (2014-15)

0.11 0.54

2.54 2.49

0.11 0.54

11.64 14.04

Impact Phase (2013-14)

0.22 0.74

6.93 4.08

0.76 2.59

26.31 17.56

Transitional Phase (2012-13)

1.70 2.26

7.68 4.36

4.75 7.61

27.51 18.06

Baseline Phase (2011-12)

6.05 5.04

7.75 5.69

19.91 21.30

29.57 26.96

Note: Comparison of average daily dolphin encounter rates from the first, second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth years of impact phase (November 2013 to October 2014, November 2014 to October 2015, November 2015 to October 2016, November 2016 to October 2017, November 2017 to October 2018 and November 2018 to October 2019 respectively), transitional phase (November 2012 October 2013), baseline phase monitoring periods (February 2011 January 2012) and operational phase monitoring period (June 2020 May 2022). denotes the standard deviation of the value.

Table d 4.6

nd limit levels of dolphin impact monitoring are shown in Table

Group size of Chinese White Dolphins ranged from one to six (1-6) individuals per group in North Lantau region during June 2021 - May 2022. The average dolphin group sizes from the 12-month operational phase monitoring period between June 2021 and May 2022 were compared with the ones deduced from baseline and transitional phases and 12-month operational phase monitoring period between June 2020 and May 2021, as shown in Table 2.4.

 

 

 

Table 2.4 Comparison of Average Dolphin Group Sizes from Operational Monitoring Period, Impact Monitoring Period and Baseline Monitoring Period

 

Average Dolphin Group Size

Overall

Northeast Lantau

Northwest Lantau

Operational Phase (2021-22)

2.09 1.64 (n = 11)

0.00

2.09 1.64 (n = 11)

Operational Phase (2020-21)

2.64 2.08 (n = 22)

0.00

2.64 2.08 (n = 22)

Impact Phase (2018-19)

2.52 1.45 (n = 27)

0.00

2.52 1.45 (n = 27)

Impact Phase (2017-18)

3.12 2.86 (n = 42)

0.00

3.12 2.86 (n = 42)

Impact Phase (2016-17)

3.51 2.68 (n = 43)

0.00

3.51 2.68 (n = 43)

Impact Phase (2015-16)

3.73 3.14 (n = 45)

1.00 (n = 1)

3.80 3.14 (n = 44)

Impact Phase (2014-15)

4.24 3.15 (n = 54)

1.00 (n = 1)

4.30 3.15 (n = 53)

Impact Phase (2013-14)

3.76 2.57 (n = 136)

5.00 2.71 (n = 4)

3.73 2.57 (n = 132)

Transitional Phase (2012-13)

3.37 2.98 (n = 186)

2.64 2.38 (n = 22)

3.47 3.05 (n = 164)

Baseline Phase (2011-12)

3.32 2.86 (n = 288)

2.80 2.35 (n = 79)

3.52 3.01 (n = 209)

Note: Comparison of average dolphin group sizes from the first, second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth years of impact phase (November 2013 to October 2014, November 2014 to October 2015, November 2015 to October 2016, November 2016 to October 2017, November 2017 to October 2018 and November 2018 to October 2018 respectively), transitional phase (November 2012 October 2013), baseline phase monitoring periods (February 2011 January 2012) and operational phase monitoring period (June 2020 May 2021) and operational phase monitoring period (June 2020 May 2022). ( denotes the standard deviation of the average value)

Whilst four (4) Limit Level exceedances were observed for the post-construction (operational) dolphin monitoring data between June 2021 and May 2022.

2.2                         Environmental Licenses and Permits

The status of environmental licensing and permit is summarized in Table 2.5 below.


Table 2.5 Summary of Environmental Licensing and Permit Status

License/ Permit

License or Permit No.

Date of Issue

Date of Expiry

License/ Permit Holder

Remarks

 

Environmental Permit

EP-354/2009/D

13-Mar-15

Throughout the Contract

HyD

Application for VEP on 3 March 2015 to supersede EP-354/2009/C

Notes:

 

 

 

 

 

HyD = Highways Department

DBJV = Dragages Bouygues Joint Venture

VEP = Variation of Environmental Permit


2.3                         Summary of Exceedances of the Environmental Quality Performance Limit


There were a total of four (4) Limit Level exceedances recorded for post-construction (operational) dolphin monitoring data between June 2021 and May 2022.

Detailed investigation findings are presented in the First to Third Quarterly EM&A Reports under this Contract and Thirty-First Quarterly EM&A Reports under Contract No. HY/2012/08 Tuen Mun Chek Lap Kok Link Northern Connection Sub-sea Tunnel Section.

Cumulative statistics are provided in Appendix D.

2.4                         Summary of Complaints, Notification of Summons and Successful Prosecutions

No environmental complaint, non-compliance with EIA recommendations, EP conditions and other requirements and environmental summons associated with this Contract was recorded in this reporting period.

Statistics on complaints, notifications of summons and successful prosecutions are summarized in Appendix D.


2.5                         Comparison of EM&A Data with EIA Predictions

2.5.1                     Marine Ecology

During the operational phase monitoring period in 2021-22, the most heavily utilized habitats by Chinese White Dolphins were only found on both northwestern end of the North Lantau region, mainly to the northern portion of Sha Chau and Lung Kwu Chau Marine Park. Dolphin usage of NWL waters declined during the present and previous phase monitoring periods. The monitoring results in this reporting period are considered to be in line with the EIA predictions.

 

 

3                             Review of EM&A Programme

3.1                         Summary of Recommendations

The post-construction monitoring for the CWD commenced on June 2021 and completed in May 2022. The EM&A programme has been reviewed and was considered as adequate and effective. No change to the EM&A programme was considered to be necessary.

4                             Conclusions

This Annual EM&A Report presents the findings of the EM&A activities undertaken during the period from 1 June 2021 to 31 May 2022, in accordance with the Updated EM&A Manual and the requirements of EP-354/2009/D.

A total of 11 groups of 23 Chinese White Dolphin sightings were recorded during the 24 sets of surveys in the second year of operational phase monitoring. Four (4) Limit Level exceedances were recorded for the post-construction (operational) dolphin monitoring data between June 2021 and May 2022.

No environmental complaint, non-compliance with EIA recommendations, EP conditions and other requirements and environmental summons associated with the construction of this Contract was recorded in this reporting period.

The monitoring programme has been reviewed and was considered as as adequate and effective. No change to the EM&A programme was considered to be necessary.