An initial environmental examination (IEE) has been conducted in accordance with ADB's Environment Policy (2002) and Environmental Assessment Guidelines (2003), as well as with Tajikistan's applicable laws and regulations. The Project is classified as category B. There will be no significant adverse long-term environmental impacts. The construction of the
embankments will have some local impacts on flow pattern and scouring but these effects will extend only a few meters into the river channel. As the system and braided river channels extend some 5-10 km toward Afghanistan, the wider effects will be insignificant and there will be no trans-boundary impacts. The socioeconomic and environmental benefits will be
considerable, in terms of improved security against floods. The project will generate employment opportunities during construction and maintenance of the embankments. The summary initial environmental examination (SIEE) is attached in Appendix 9 of the RRP.
By their very nature, floods force involuntary resettlement. The core purposes of the Project are to assist in the prevention of floods and in the advance preparation of households so they can cope more effectively in areas where floods do occur. Land acquisition and resettlement needs have been assessed in accordance with ADB's Involuntary Resettlement
Policy (1995), as well as Tajikistan's applicable laws and regulations. The nature and location of the proposed Project will not require any land acquisition and resettlement of households because the embankments to be rehabilitated and the temporary access roads will occupy about 10-15 ha of government land. Most of the construction activities will take place on the riverbank of Pyanj which is a depopulated border area. Therefore, no involuntary resettlement impacts are envisioned in relation to the flood embankments. At the feasibility study level, no land acquisition is expected. However, in case of an unforeseeable change of structure design, there is a possibility that unexpected land acquisition may arise. Therefore, a resettlement framework was prepared and agreed by the Government (Appendix 10 of the RRP). In case a small-scale land acquisition is required, an outline resettlement framework has been developed to ensure that communities will not be negatively affected.
||An assessment of the Project's impact on indigenous peoples was undertaken in accordance with ADB's Indigenous Peoples Policy (1998). According to the population census of 2000, 70% of the population of the project area is Tajik, 25% is Uzbek, and 5% is ethnic minorities (most are married to ethnic Tajiks). Generally, non-Tajik populations in southern Tajikistan speak fluent Tajik as well as their native languages. They enjoy the same rights as the Tajik majority, regularly intermarry with Tajik households, and are fully integrated into institutional, cultural, and economic processes. Consequently, they do not face discrimination. These groups are not sufficiently separate to justify classification as indigenous peoples. Therefore, all ethnic groups in the project area are equally positioned to benefit from the structural and nonstructural measures of the Project. No specific actions for ethnic minorities are envisioned for this project.
|During Project Design
A series of participatory stakeholder consultations were conducted with representatives of local government (chairpersons of district and jamoat leaders and their deputies), district emergency and civil defense authorities, heads of committees for affairs of women and children and social issues under districts, international partners (UNDP, OXFAM, JICA, ACTED, Mission East, DIPECHO, Focus), local NGOs and community based organizations, and the general population. The consultations addressed main social and economic problems of the area and possible mechanisms of community direct engagement to structural and non-structural flood management activities.
Stakeholder consultations were conducted at the district and community offices in Hamadoni. At these meetings the purpose and components of the project were presented along with the benefits and potential impacts. The agendas of the meetings covered the following: (i) environmental aspects of the flood management project; (ii) results and proposals of the feasibility study; (iii) community feedback on proposed structural and nonstructural measures; (iv) community willingness to contribute to the flood management project; and (v) establishment of community focus groups, enabling community representatives to have a regular dialogue with the project staff as a part of a long-term community engagement strategy.
In addition, several villages were visited and residents were informed about the proposed interventions and asked about their perceptions of the Project. The results of the consultations were positive. All the participants considered that the Project would result in beneficial agricultural, environmental and public health impacts and that there would be no adverse effects during the construction phase, as the project site will be away from their settlements, near the border area between Tajikistan and Afghanistan. They were informed that no land acquisition and resettlement of households would be required.
Extensive consultation with key individuals has taken place, including with experts of the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia, Kuhiston Foundation, the national focal point of the environmental impact assessment EIA Convention in Tajikistan, the head of the SCSNUP under the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment Protection, the secretaries of pilot jamoats, Department of Labor for Hamadoni district, elders and villagers within the study area, experts from the Irrigation Rehabilitation Project, the PMO for the Irrigation Rehabilitation Project, Oxfam GB Kulyab, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the CES, Department of Environment and Protection, Deputy Chairman of Hamadoni district, and the Head of State Ecological Expertise (SCSNUP under MAEP).
Key individuals consulted in Afghanistan included representatives and experts from Kunduz province, Takhar district, Department of Water Management (Kunduz), Department of Agriculture (Kunduz), Project Coordination Unit and Emergency Irrigation Rehabilitation Program (PCU/EIRP), Aga Khan Development Network Foundation (AKDN), Baghlan, and the Kunduz River Basin Programme (KRBP).