Summary of Working Paper No. 142-1999

II.5.10 A Guide to EIA Implementation for the NSR

By J. Thomassen, Norwegian Institute for Nature Research, Trondheim, Norway; K.A. Moe and O.W. Brude, Alpha Environmental Consultants, Oslo, Norway; S.M. Chivilev and V. Pogrebov, Research Institute for Nature Conservation of the Arctic and the North, St.Petersburg, Russia; M. Gavrilo and S. Zubarev, Arctic and Antarcitic Research Institute, St. Petersburg, Russia, V. Khlebovich, Zoologigal Institute, St.Petersburg, Russia, and G. Semanov, Central Marine Research and Design Institute, St. Petersburg, Russia.

There are two main objectives in INSROP Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA):

1. To build up a dynamic EIA - system that can handle different types of information and is flexible in use when new information is available or when plans or scenarios are altered.

2. By using this system, make a limited EIA for selected environmental components (Valued Ecosystem Components) for coarse scenarios in NSR, all based on present available information.

This Working Paper is organised in two parts:

Part I deals mainly with general background information, the assessment system and results obtained in INSROP Phase I where significant baseline data were collected and systematised for later use in the impact assessment system. Coarse NSR activities and scenarios are further described, and the main impact factors following this are identified. The main elements of the Adaptive Environmental Assessment and Management (AEAM), namely the Valued Ecosystem Components (VECs) and the impact hypotheses are also discussed, including important questions concerning biological effects and vulnerability.

Part II is a step by step description of the IT and GIS based assessment tools and procedure in INSROP EIA, including the accompanying methods for assessing vulnerability. Methods have earlier been developed for semi-quantitative assessments of vulnerability and analyses of environmental impact by Anker-Nilssen (1987), Isaksen et al. (1998), Gavrilo et al. (INSROP WP 97-1998), Moe et al. (1998a, b). These models however require input data of a certain quality and quantity. In the INSROP EIA such models will be used for selected VECs such as shoreline oil vulnerability, seabirds and marine mammals. For other VECs a more qualitative assessment approach has been developed and is described in Part II. Both methodological approaches end up with a VEC and area specific indication of potential effects of NSR, so called Potential Impact Level (PIL) - indices. Part II also includes an example of how the assessment system will work given defined impact factors and a specified VEC.

The limited INSROP EIA is published in a separate paper (INSROP WP 163 -1999).