The project involves upgrading an operational oil terminal facility through the addition of new storage tanks, improvement of tank foundations, and construction of a new pipeline. The terminal receives various petroleum products by ship. It stores the products and subsequently distributes them to the domestic market by barge, tank trucks, drums, and cylinders. At present, the main activities in the terminal include unloading of the products from ships, loading of liquid products into barges, loading of liquid products and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) into tank trucks, blending and loading of lubricating oils in drums, and filling of LPG cylinders.
The proposed 50 km pipeline will be used to transport LPG and light petroleum products to a pumping station in another city, and then to another terminal in a port. The pipeline will pass a populated area, highways, rivers, a railroad, mangrove areas, and energy transmission lines.
The terminal is in a commercial/industrial area on the edge of an island. Adjacent facilities include shipyards, other industrial plants, and office buildings. Strong typhoons average two per year. The population around the terminal consists mostly of about 2000 workers in the area. Similar terminals operated by the same company can be found in many other countries, although the distribution system varies in each case.
An EIA with ERA is proposed to be conducted for the project. The EIA will assess the impact of the project to the population and the natural ecosystem. EIAs for similar facilities have identified the following as the major sources of environmental concerns: fuel spills and leakages, fires, explosions, vapour clouds, and pollution from the storage or accidental spills and leaks of the petroleum products. The ERA is expected to investigate these concerns where significant consequences and uncertainties warrant. The major hazard is large quantities of motor gasoline and LPG, which have low flash points. Spills and leakages could cause fires, explosions, or vapour clouds and could lead to catastrophic consequences, but the actual risk depends on how and when the spills and leakages would occur and what their magnitudes or sizes are.
Potential spills during operations are most likely during the transfer of products from one location or from one transport mode to another, such as from barge to tank truck. Those transferred at temperatures below their flash points may burn but will not create a flammable vapour cloud. Those liquids with high flash points (e.g., in excess of 80°C) will be diffi-