Environmental Impact Assessment Process for three 10 megawatt photovoltaic (Solar) facilities at Mariental, Omaruru and Okahandja, Namibia. Non-technical summary of the Draft Scoping Report

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Namibia Power Corporation (Pty) Ltd (NamPower) propose to purchase power from three Independent Power Producer (IPP) run photovoltaic (PV) solar energy facilities to reduce their high reliance on power imports as part of Namibia's security of power supply plan. The power would be generated from three individual PV facilities at three separate locations in Namibia namely; Mariental, Omaruru and Okahandja. The proposed facilities would each generate 10 megawatts (MW) and cover approximately 35 hectares (ha) at each location, dependent on final design. The selected IPP would build, own and operate each facility on sites owned by the State. NamPower appointed Aurecon Namibia (Pty) Ltd (Aurecon) to undertake the EIA study to investigate the potential biophysical and socio-economic environmental impacts. The findings of the Scoping Report will inform the Ministry of Environment and Tourism: Department of Environmental Affairs (MET: DEA) decision-making and, if approved, it would inform the design and operation of the three proposed PV facilities. How does a typical EIA work? An EIA is a process that evaluates the environmental and socio-economic characteristics of a proposed project, its site and surrounds and then assesses the potential consequences that the project might have. Where negative impacts are likely, measures are recommended to avoid or lessen these impacts. Similarly, measures are also recommended to increase positive impacts. The process provides I&APs with an opportunity to have input and comment on the project. The project I&APs will also be kept informed about the EIA process. The various stages of the process are shown in the Figure 1. This is a non-technical summary of the Draft Scoping Report and does not replace the comprehensive Report. It is recommended that if any person has significant interest or queries that they refer to the complete Draft Scoping Report for detailed information.

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