Identification elements of impacts

Brief overiew of impact assessment has been explained in previous post. As it has been mentioned, one crucial part of impact assessment is inventory. The inventory here means to identify, to note, to gather all information and factors that may be affected by proposed projects or actions.

In doing this step, we must not forget to describe and gather all existing information about present condition before project. Existing situation are measured and described, but yet, we do not need still to value the importance of these variables, it will be done on the next stage. Now what are factors or elements that need to be noted and considered to probably affected by proposed activities? Although it may be vary from one country to another, but these probably most representative to mention:

The “ologies”
The ologies here include hydrology of existing relief, archaelogy (valuable intrinsic value of things), geology, anthropology.

Environmental quality
This is absolute factors that need to be considered. Before the proposed projects take place, of course land measurement must be done in terms of environmental quality, surface and subsurface water, how much is the DO, BOD, suspended solids (turbidity), temperatures and so on. Not to forget air quality, noise measurement and how proposed projects will like cause traffic jam near the area (transportation impacts). Usually, owner will do either ask for the agency to measure the quality or ask third party outside the project frame organization, sort of qualified independent lab to measure these variables.

Plant and animal life
We can get this data in biology related agency in that city. We do not need to consider the importance yet, as soon as we think the proposed project may affect plant and animal life, just note, and gather information as many as possible about what types of plant or animals live there, how the ecosystem work and so on. This is important factor as well.

Economic impact on the surrounding community
Well, for this part, some countries do this, but as far as I know, in Indonesia, this part is less importance to considered part of impacts. However, often this still become part of impact identification process. This will include survey the number of population, employed and unemployed people, average family member, typical jobs and income, etc.

Analysis of the risks
Measurement of the risk to both people and the natural environment from accidents
that may occur during the life of the project. Measuring the risk itself we know that is very difficult and somehow complicated, thus often we invite third qualified parties to do this measurement, otherwise just simple risk analysis. It must be noted, determining risk analysis itself will probably cost at least half the value of impact assessment itself.

Other relevant socioeconomic parameters
These parameters are like future land use, expansion or diminution of the population of urban areas and exurbs, the impacts of nonresident populations, and environmental justice considerations. Again, this will involve economic and geographic experts. This is part of the reason why impact assessment is a multidisciplinnary task.

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