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Construction Environmental Management Plan (CEMP)

The purpose of a Construction Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) is to provide a framework wherein all environmental obligations during construction can be met and adverse impacts avoided. The CEMP should cover all aspects of a project’s environmental management and address all the significant impacts that can arise during the construction phase.

CEMP includes the overall strategy to manage all project related environmental issues on site and provides a manual, for use by management and construction staff involved in the work.

Why CEMP is needed?

  • Define the environmental objectives and goals to be achieved during the construction phase;
  • Outline the applicable environmental guidelines, including local as well as international best practice standards that must be followed during construction;
  • Identify environmental impact sources from construction of the project, such as chemical and hazardous waste, dust, exhaust gases, and noise emissions;
  • Provide specific mitigation measures to avoid or minimize any impacts on the air, water, soil and groundwater quality, such as site preparation and clearing activities, control installations, and waste minimization protocols, in order to ensure environmental compliance;
  • Provide emergency procedures including an emergency control and action plan, related corrective measures, adequate equipment and training program for personnel to deal with case-specific emergency situations on site;
  • Provide safeguard and control measures to ensure the occupational health and safety of all personnel working at the construction site;
  • Define the responsibilities and actions required by all parties (project proponent, main contractor, subcontractors, etc.) during construction to maintain compliance with the environmental requirements;
  • Recommend implementation procedures such as the appointment of a full time senior supervisor based on site to ensure that compliance with the requirements of the CEMP are met, and that all relevant construction issues are dealt with in a timely and efficient manner;
  • Provide a structured reporting system with standard forms for communication, documentation and review of environmental compliance activities;
  • Provide a framework for a monitoring and inspection program in order to determine whether the applicable standards and protocols are being complied with

CEMP Methodology

A CEMP shall cover,

  1. CEMP scope, context, objectives and outcomes. Objectives and targets shall be realistic and relevant to the proposed construction works.
  2. Project description
    • Brief project description
      • Project scope, objectives, location and characteristics.
      • Layouts, plot plans, construction camps, storage areas, land borrow pits, etc
      • Construction activities and methods at each construction stage e.g. site preparation construction, commissioning and demobilization
      • Services to be used: potable and industrial water, sewage and industrial waste water treatment and disposal; domestic and industrial waste management; fuel, lubricants and other chemicals management; etc.
      • Construction plan and workforce.
      • Access for personnel and equipment
    • Project Management, including Management Structure (organization chart, roles and responsibilities, liaison and subcontractors), relation to any existing HSE MS, EMS, etc
  3. Legal requirements
    • Environmental regulations, contractual requirements and industry codes and good practices that apply to the project, according to its nature and location.
    • Current environmental permits/exemptions and their requirements.
  4. Environmental assessment
    • Identification of environmental aspects related to construction activities and their potential environmental impacts.
    • Assessment methodology used and criteria set to assess environmental impacts’ significance.
    • Assessment of potential environmental impacts; environmental impacts are grouped according to their significance.
  5. Preventive and corrective measures
    • Description of preventive and corrective measures proposed to minimize environmental impacts, indicating responsible party and application moment.
    • Drawings and sketches with details of the measures, to facilitate their implementation, as well as a summary table describing the measures proposed for each impact, responsibilities for implementation, when to be implemented, etc.
  6. Monitoring, follow up and reporting
    • Plan proposed for monitoring and following up implementation of environmental measures and their performance, including performance indicators. The plan shall also include scope and frequency for site inspections and audits.
    • Environmental monitoring plan (when required), including parameters to be analyzed, sampling points, frequencies and methodologies to be used.
    • Environmental performance monitoring and reporting schemes, which shall consider the requirements included in the environmental permits/exemptions.
    • Environmental records keeping scheme and schedule.
    • Triggers for CEMP review and update.
  7. Contingency planning and response plan
    • Potential emergency scenarios considering construction works proposed.
    • Organization and methods defined to manage and control identified emergency scenarios, including communications, reporting, etc., as well as the links to other related documents
  8. CEMP can also include plans specific to some significant environmental aspects, such as
    • Waste management plan, including management and disposal methods for liquid, gaseous and solid waste to be generated during demolition and construction activities.
    • Chemical management plan for fuels, lubricants and other chemicals to be used.
    • Resources management plan proposed to reduce/minimize consumption.
    • Other management plans required e.g. Marine management plan, etc.
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