The project is classified as environmental category B. Initial environmental examinations (IEEs) were carried out for all of the part B activities in accordance with ADB's Safeguard Policy Statement. In accordance with ADB's information and disclosure and consultation requirements, these subprojects and the potential environmental impacts were presented and discussed at stakeholder meetings and focus group discussions. Key environmental impacts during construction are largely temporary in nature, and include dust, gaseous emissions, noise, and some public inconvenience. Operational impacts might include gaseous emissions, contamination of water supply, improper treatment and disposal of sludge, or escape of leachate. The extent of these impacts will be mitigated with measures identified in the IEEs including careful project management and contractor compliance during construction with an environmental management plan integral to the contract documents. Key mitigation measures during operation are securing an adequate operational budget, implementing reforms to service institutions under the project, and developing (under the project) operation and maintenance (O&M) manuals for (i) water supply and wastewater management; (ii) solid waste management; and (iii) district heating that incorporate the conditions stipulated in the environmental permit, if necessary, and the proposed mitigation measures specified in the environmental management plan (EMP).
The recipient's institutional capacity to manage environmental risks is limited, with a single trained full-time environmental staff member working at the aimag level and a single untrained environmental inspector covering all environmental matters in each soum. Aimag and soum environmental management and monitoring capacity will be strengthened with capacity development and training under part A, and the PIUs will be staffed and assisted with technical specialists and qualified consultants including environmental management specialists. The project will greatly improve community health and living conditions, reduce environmental pollution, and decrease per capita demand for energy resources by improving the efficiency of urban services. Priority infrastructure investments in solid-waste management will reduce groundwater pollution, and improved urban roads will reduce dust and noise. EMPs, including the Grievance Redress Mechanism (GRM), will be refined during the detailed design stage using a consultation process with affected persons and closely consulting project stakeholders. An environmental safeguard specialist will ensure revised IEEs and EMPs during detailed engineering design.
The environmental monitoring report for 2012 was submitted to ADB in February 2013. The EA has recruited a local consulting company to undertake the environmental impact assessment of the project. The Mongolian version of the report was submitted to the Ministry in Q1 2013. The report will be submitted to ADB in Q4 2013 which is under translation into English.
||It is anticipated that land acquisition and resettlement will not be significant and can be avoided for most activities. Some houses, gers, and fences will need to be relocated to nearby plots only in the proposed roads improvement priority infrastructure investment in Hanbogd. In accordance with ADB's Safeguard Policy Statement, a land acquisition and resettlement plan (LARP) has been prepared. To provide a framework for unanticipated land acquisition and resettlement as a result of changes in project sites prior to implementation, a land acquisition and resettlement framework (LARF) has also been prepared. The LARF sets out (i) the resettlement policy and Mongolian legal framework for land acquisition and resettlement, (ii) compensation standards and entitlements, (iii) implementation arrangements, (iv) consultation and participation, (v) eligibility provision, (vi) a grievance redress mechanism, (vii) monitoring and evaluation, and (viii) provision of the resettlement budget. The PIUs will be responsible for overall resettlement management and coordination, internal monitoring, and quarterly reporting to ADB. The PIUs will also take primary responsibility for resettlement consultation, notices, implementation, and timely delivery of entitlements. Because of limited experience with involuntary resettlement, training and capacity building will be conducted under part A. The PMU will review the remaining activities under part B before the award of the civil works contracts to ensure there are no involuntary resettlement effects that would require compensation and other assistance. If impacts are identified and cannot be avoided in other project activities, a LARP will be prepared in accordance with the provisions of the LARF and submitted to ADB. The Project's national resettlement consultant conducted a series of training sessions for the PMU and design contractors on ADB resettlement guidelines, and cooperated with design consultants to reduce the scope of involuntary resettlement. A land acquisition and resettlement plan for project sites will be finalized by Q4 2013.