The expected project impact will be environmentally sustainable and socioeconomically inclusive urban and rural development in Haidong. The intended project outcome is improved municipal infrastructure and services in Haidong, including upgraded water supply, solid waste management, and flood control. The indicative project outputs include the following:
(i) Integrated flood-risk management along Huangshui River and improvement of 11 small tributaries, including (a) 69.0 kilometers (km) of river embankment protection and stabilization works along the main section of the Huangshui River to achieve 1-in-50 years flood-protection standard, (b) 6.6 km of river embankment works along 11 tributaries of the Huangshui River, (c) rehabilitation of existing river embankment of 22.0 km, (d) dredging works of about 180,000 m3, (e) ancillary structures along the riverbank which includes 32 canal culvert structures and 15 river entry point structures, and (f) developing 180 hectares (ha) of riverside vegetation.
(ii) Water quality improvement and conservation and establishment of multipurpose urban wetland parks, including (a) two multipurpose urban wetland parks, including Gaodian county wetland park with an area of 160 ha and Hongshui county wetland park with an area of 180 ha; (b) wastewater reclamation facility (10,000 m3 per day); (c) demonstration stormwater harvesting system; and (d) education center to showcase best practices in areas of water conservation, wetland management, and environmental sustainability.
(iii) Municipal infrastructures, including (a) 20,000 m3 sanitary landfill in Hongshui and Gaodian counties, (b) 39 collection stations and 9 transport vehicles, and (c) a water treatment plant with capacity of 30,000 m3 per day and water supply network to be connected to the existing distribution network in Ping'an county.
(iv) Project management and capacity development, including (a) providing support for the project management office (PMO) and the project implementing agency to ensure a smooth project implementation in compliance with ADB policy and operational requirements, (b) strengthening capacity for urban and regional planning and management, (c) providing knowledge support to help Haidong City Government (HCG) address some specific development challenges relevant to the project (in areas such as water conservation, flood monitoring, forecasting, and early warning), and (d) assist in preparing a strategic framework for water conservation and pollution control in the Huangshui River Basin, including a prioritized list of key investments.
|Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy
Qinghai Province, with a population of 5.6 million, mountainous landscape and extreme climate is located in the upper Yangtze and Yellow river watersheds in the northeastern part of the Qinghai-Yizang Plateau in the People's Republic of China (PRC). Qinghai province is the source of major rivers including the Yangtze, Yellow, and Mekong Rivers, and its capital is Xining city with a population of 2.2 million.
On 8 February 2013, the State Council approved the upgrading of Haidong into a prefecture level city, becoming the second largest city in Qinghai province, strategically located between Lanzhou and Xining cities. Haidong city with a population of 1.67 million, includes the counties of Hualong, Huzhu, Ledu, Minhe, Ping'an, and Xunhua. Haidong city has mineral deposits of oil, shale, nickel, and gypsum. Further, the Lanzhou-Xining and Lhasa Railway runs through Haidong. During the summer months, Haidong attracts large number of tourists and this generates significant revenue and local employment.
Haidong city suffers from various urban environmental problems due to the harsh natural environment and lack of investment in key urban infrastructure. It has a continental dry climate with high evaporation rates. Significant surface run-off occurs during the rainy season, with concentrated heavy rainfall during the summer months, from June to September which at times causes seasonal flooding affecting public safety. Very low vegetation coverage in the Huangshui watershed lead to high soil erosion rates and high amounts of dust being transported by frequent winds, causing atmospheric pollution and productivity loss. The deteriorating water quality in the Huangshui River due to point and nonpoint source pollution and flooding affects public health. The Haidong section of the Huangshui river are Classes IV-V, indicating that it is highly polluted. Another major source of pollution is the dumping of solid waste into the Huangshui River. Further, the available water resources per capita in Haidong is less than 550 cubic meter (m3) per year indicating severe water shortage based on international standards (500- 1,000 m3 per year).
Accordingly, in 2013, the Haidong City Master Plan (2013 2030) was approved based on the major premise that development will be driven by practices governing ecological and environmental sustainability. The Master Plan envisages Haidong city to become a green, livable, and sustainable city. Further, the Huangshui River Ecological Watershed Landscape Plan is in its final stages of development, which recognizes the need to strengthen the existing flood control structures, riverbank erosion, effectively addressing the increasing water pollution from nonpoint sources including residential garbage, and the imminent loss of its remaining riparian wetlands. To address these concerns and other water- related issues, a comprehensive program to improve the functions and values of the Huangshui River and its watershed, as well as managing flood risks, while increasing climate change resilience, and improving water quality and availability, was developed.
There is an urgent need for the proposed project in Qinghai province which is the source of the three major rivers where water conservation and pollution control at the source is critical as it would have effects on several cities downstream. Specifically, the proposed project is located in Haidong city, along the banks of the Huangshui River which flows over 139 kilometer stretch in Haidong and flows into the Yellow River. The proposed components are all integrated around this common theme of improving the environmental sustainability through the protection and proper management of the Huangshui River and its watershed, which is the region's most valuable natural resource. To address the dual challenges of the need to conserve water, and reduce water pollution, Haidong city plans to adopt an integrated water resources management strategy in the Huangshui River.
The proposed project would focus primarily on environmentally sustainable urban development in Haidong along the Huangshui valley with investments in key municipal infrastructure and services including flood control, solid waste, stormwater, and wastewater management. It supports the concepts of environmentally sustainable development by linking the project outputs with the Haidong City Master Plan, Huangshui River Ecological Watershed Landscape Plan, and also complements the upstream water resources management work in the Xining section of the Huangshui River undertaken by a World Bank project. The current Integrated Management Plan for the Huangshui River Basin (2011 2015) focuses on strengthening protection of water resources, reducing the discharge of pollutants into the river, and improving water use efficiency.
The proposed project includes priority components aligned around the common theme of sustainable watershed management and green growth, including (i) integrated flood-risk management; (ii) water conservation and the establishment of multipurpose urban wetland parks; and (iii) municipal infrastructure targeting water supply, rural-urban solid waste management, and effluent reuse to enhance agricultural sustainability and livelihood while reducing environmental pollution; and (iv) project management and capacity development. The project will construct new and strengthen existing flood control structures, reduce riverbank erosion, reduce water pollution from nonpoint sources, including residential garbage and wastewater, while increasing climate change resilience and improving water quality and availability, and is expected to directly benefit more than 1.4 million people. The proposed project is included in Asian Development Bank's (ADB) country operations business plan, 2014 2016 and the ensuing loan in ADB's 2016 lending pipeline in the PRC.
Strategic fit. The proposed project will be aligned to the PRC's 13th Five-Year Plan and decisions of the Plenum which supports the long-term goal of stable and economic development by promoting livelihood improvement, environmental protection, and balanced socioeconomic development. It supports environmentally sustainable and inclusive economic growth, which are strategic priorities of the Midterm Review of Strategy 2020 and is also aligned with ADB's country partnership strategy 2011 2015 for the PRC. Further, the project is consistent with the ADB's urban operational plan and its focus on inclusive, green and competitive urban development, and is aligned with ADB's water operational plan with its objectives of water efficiency and integrated water resource management. The Haidong city Master Plan envisages Haidong city to become a green and ecologically livable city and incorporates key elements emphasized in the new urbanization plan issued by the central government in April 2014. The new urbanization plan aims at (i) optimizing city layouts by enhancing the leading role of major cities, increasing the number of small and medium sized cities and improving the service functions of small towns; and (ii) establishing harmonious and pleasant living conditions in cities with improved infrastructure, public services, and environment.