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Potential Environmental Impact

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I have been asked to put together a report for the potential construction project for The City Of Liverpool College. The current site being looked at is on Roscoe Street. I will be discussing the consequences which could occur to the buildings in proximity to the site location, and the people who could be affected. Body:

During this part of the report, I will be discussing what problems could occur during each phase (pre-construction, construction, post construction) and how you can go about preventing this from occurring. Pre-construction phase:

During the pre-construction phase, there will be a lot of discussion based on the design of the building, what materials need to be used, how it gets there, but nothing on how the materials are being made, where they are being taken from, how its being transported, the biodiversity within the area and how its going to change, and any natural habitats that will be affected because of this project. I will discuss the repercussions of this project, and how it affects the habitats, biodiversity’s, atmosphere and the impact on the environment. Environmental impact assessment:

This is what is used to determine the affects on the environment, when a construction project is being done. It is used to protect the environment, by using a local planning authority to give planning permission to the project to go ahead, based off of the likely affects on the environment, and the severity of them. Within the regulations that have been set, is a procedure to determine what projects require an environmental impact assessment. It will also need to have assessments, consultations, and a decision for the projects which may have severe affects on the environment. The local authorities are required to take into consideration the environmental implications of developments, in terms of planning control. Within the regulations, there are procedures to take into account when a project may have severe effects on the environment. Local planning authorities and developers are who considers if the project may require an environmental impact assessment. If it is deemed necessary, then the affects which may be more detrimental to the environment will be made priority. This is just a brief description to what an environmental impact assessment is.

For the project of the LAX building to begin, it would need to gain the relevant approval which would be done by the local planning authority. They would give their approval, based off of the affects to the environment. This would include buildings in close proximity to the site, such as St Luke’s Church Gardens. They would need to consider the implications of developments, in terms of planning control, with regards to the environment. This would mean whether the roads would get blocked to allow cranes, vehicles, workers to get to the site. Would there need to be a request to shut down the road in order for the work to commence without interruption. This would be the biggest factor, as traffic can cause a lot of accidents, and it would also disrupt people’s work schedules, as people need to get to work for a specific time. And due to Liverpool being a popular tourism location, it would have an affect on the tourists getting to the popular tourism spots as St Luke’s Church Gardens and Liverpool Cathedral in close proximity to the site. It wouldn’t be a big problem as there is many routes in which tourists could take, but could be taken into consideration. Biodiversity:

Biodiversity is what living matter and the different types of living matter that is in the present environment. The biodiversity in this particular area isn’t big. There is maybe birds or bats in the area, but they can move due to their ability to travel. And as this isn’t a greenbelt area, it wouldn’t need to be assessed for the biodiversity or habitat that would be damaged, and there for doesn’t need to be talked about in depth. Natural habitats:

A natural habitat is where a living being lives, for example, we live in our homes, birds live in trees/nests. As this is a city, there isn’t many places where animals can live. Birds can build the nests and bats can live in buildings, but in terms of forestry for example, there isn’t much for an animal. So it isn’t necessary to go into depth about this. Construction:

During the construction phase, there will be a lot happening all over. This may vary from the actual erecting of the building, to the transport of goods, to the extraction of materials needed, etc. There will be a lot of damage done to the o-zone layer, a lot of habitat and biodiversity destroyed, amongst other things. Transport of goods:

The transport of good is when materials that are needed for the building are transported to the site, generally by vehicles. The problem with this is there would be a lot of materials needed to supply this project. Nitrogen oxide is formed when the combustion of fuels takes place. Vehicles use fuels (oil) as a source of power, which then releases nitrogen oxides into the atmosphere, which is what is destroying our atmosphere. In the UK, this is the biggest pollutant we release. And it is done mostly by cars. Nitrogen oxide, when exposed over a long duration of time, can decrease lung function and also increase the chance of getting bronchitis, cough or phlegm, which is more likely to come into affect with children. It also has a greater affect to people with asthma. It also contributes to the formation of acid rain, which is destroying forestry all around the world, which is what we need to eat, breathe, use as a building material. It will also start to degrade building materials, and as a result of this, begin to destroy the structure of the building. There is no real way to avoid this as you need the materials to be able to get to the site, and without vehicles, it is impossible to do. The best or most efficient way to help this cause is by purchasing your materials from a local supplier, where it is made within the site, not abroad. Traffic:

Traffic will become a problem during the transportation of materials, getting workers to the site, and any machinery/vehicles needed for the construction of the building (crane). Due to this problem, you would likely need to shut down the roads connected to the site. The problem with this is it is in a city centre. There is a lot of traffic during all times, and would create a huge problem for everyone. In particular, civil servants. If firefighter cannot get to a fire due to a road being blocked off, or an increase in traffic, then serious consequence could take place, in particular, a loss of life. A way in which this could be prevented is to use materials that do not need that type of assistance. If you can construct this building without the use of heavy or dense materials, then you would not need a crane to get it to the higher parts of the building. Traffic can also put a halt on the progression of the construction. When the materials are being transported, it could get stuck in traffic, which could be unavoidable if travelling on the motor way. This will ultimately stop progression of the project, and have an added effect on other plans due to this having a domino effect on everything that comes afterwards. Noise:

As this is a construction site, it would be expected to be very noisy due to the machinery being used. In close proximity to the construction site are a lot of shops, clinics, even a dental surgery. All of these require a level of concentration, which would be hard to keep with the amount of noise that would be generated on the site. Ways in which you could control the noise levels to assist the community is to restrict the hours of which work will be carried out, deliveries be made, notifying residents. The general hours of work is 8am to 6pm throughout the week. Saturdays would be 8am to 1pm. Sundays and bank holidays would generally be avoided. This is only relevant to work that has high noise levels, such as demolition, roofing, repairing utilities, road works. Work such as service installations can be done outside of those hours as that type of installation doesn’t make too much noise. Dust:

Dust on a construction site is to be expected due to the different materials used. The damage dust can have to workers and people who breathe it in are; lung cancer, silicosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and asthma. Ways in which you could help prevent or decrease the chance to get these diseases would be to reduce the amount of time needed to complete the project, use of materials that uses a fastening system, silica free abrasives, dampen the materials, extract dust as the tool is being used, p.p.e, have a constant rotation of workers, install sheeting to try and keep the dust within the site. You could also give the workers the correct dust control training so they know if their equipment is working correctly. Water usage:

Water is used daily on a construction site. It is used for welfare facilities, cleaning of tools, prevention of dust, cement mix, etc. As there is a lot of water needed for the work on construction site, it will need to be supplied and transported. You would also need to tap into the main distribution of water as you would need potable water for certain things such as welfare facilities. Ways in which you could prevent the need for water to be distributed to the site is by using grey water or rain water where reasonably practicable. As this is a free usage of water that is easily stored, it is the most efficient and cost effective way. You could also use a water efficiency strategy. This is used to determine the performance by measuring what is achieved, in relation to industry benchmarks. Raw materials:

Materials used to construct a building can come from all over the world. It could be from Norway, Germany, Canada, etc. It is based off of the clients preference. The problem we face is how the materials are gained and how they are delivered. Where the resources are being taken from needs to be considered for this. Somewhere, the resources are being drilled, exploded, etc. to supply the construction of this building, and in doing so, removes areas in which animals can live. This has a huge detrimental effect to all animals within the area of the resources that are needed. And doing so without realising it. Species are becoming extinct as a side-effect to our needs. As we spoke about it before, the transport of goods comes into effect when dealing with the damage to the atmosphere, traffic issues, fuel usage, etc. A lot of things are needed to be considered when deciding on what materials to use. It is probably best to use local materials from local companies. This will help the cost of fuel, amount of time needed for the manufacturing of the material, you would cut the amount of NO2 emissions. Post-construction:

This stage is where the project is finished and the building has been given to the client. As there will be a lot of people using the building, there will be a lot of materials being used, such as paper, foods, wrappers, etc. Food waste:

As people will be using the building regularly, food will be needed to keep them energized. What people tend to do is waste food, by either buying too much or buying it when they aren’t hungry. Food uses a lot of energy in order to make, distribute and store. Think about a pack of cheese. In order to make it, you need to raise cows, process their milk, transport the cheese to the shops, have it refrigerated, use fuel to get to the shop to buy it, then store it in a fridge again. Then we won’t even eat it all It doesn’t seem like much energy is being used, but it all adds up. Toilet waste:

What tends to happen in Liverpool, or at least in the past, is our waste would be sent to a storage unit on the docks. We would wait for the tide to come in, and release it all in the hopes the tide would drag it out to the sea. What we are doing now, is storing it in a container, and having it transported a couple miles out into the sea, and dumping it into the ocean. No difference, just doing it further away. And in doing so, contaminating the water. What we could do to prevent this, and use it more efficiently, is by turning it into compost and using it for farming. It has been proven it is a possibility, so why shouldn’t we? A lot of people will be using the building, and the population is constantly on the rise. Surely we would need more crops? Wrapper waste:

Wrappers for products are made in factories, which use a lot of fuel to keep it running. The wrappers are then sent to the other factory that has requested them, and uses it to contain foods, drinks, etc. It is then sent to the shop to be bought by the public. When people are finished with a wrapper, it is generally placed in a bin or thrown on the floor. What can happen is it affects the animals in close proximity to the wrapper waste. Such as this turtle:

The ways in which we could stop something like this from happening is by installing more bins close to the site, use more degradable materials, instead if these plastics. We could even reuse the wrappers, as it can be recycled and used for the same thing again. Paper waste:

We use paper on a daily basic. Whether it is reading the news paper, or printing work out for college. And due to this building a college campus, would need a lot of paper to supply its needs for students. In order to manufacture paper, trees need to be taken down and used. This is one of the causes for the massive reduction in forestry all over the world. And in doing so, destroying the habitats of a lot of animals. As a result of the mass amount of usage of paper by us, there is the potential of severe damage to the environment. Toxic inks are used, which can have an adverse effect on the atmosphere when incinerated. The other problem is how the paper is manufactured, transported, and the process to reuse it. It all requires a lot of fuel and energy. Way to help this problem is by using more recyclable paper. Even though it needs fuels to do it, it saves more energy than using the ordinary paper. Litter:

Litter is seen everywhere. Mainly in cities where the population is greater. The more litter there is in a city, the less likely people are going to want to visit it. Litter can also be mistake for food by animals, which could result in them choking on it. The can even become trapped because of our littering habits. Litter also plays a part in contaminating water, and where ever there is dirt, vermin are attracted. The way to prevent this from happening is by placing litter bins all around the site. There should be notices for people to read about the effects on the environment and animals. Noise:

As a lot of people will be using the build, and travelling to it, there will be an increase in volume surrounding the area. This will have an adverse effect on people surrounding the area, and any animals that live nearby. Animals are more reliant on sound, and as we make a lot of noise, the will become disorientated and more aggressive. This has an effect on the wildlife balance, allowing an over population of a specific animal. There isn’t much we can do to prevent this. On a personal level, we could make a choice not to play our music too loud, or turn he t.v down a little. Traffic:

As the population has been growing vastly over the years, more cars are being used to travel. This ultimately creates a lot of traffic. As cars use fuel to function, it adds to the quality of air that we breathe in. As this building is in a city centre, there is going to be a lot of traffic. There is no way to prevent this, other than everyone using their cars less, getting the bus to work, riding a bike, or even walking. Granted these may not be appropriate in some cases, but anything that will help the quality of air we are breathing in would help us drastically. CO2 from boiler:

As the building will be used by many people, it will need to be sufficient in heating it to an appropriate temperature, especially during the winter. Due to the amount of heat needed, it will create a lot of CO2, which damages the air we breathe in, and also helps the process of acid rain. Ways in which we can avoid this is by making sure the building has the correct amount of insulation and walls to keep as much heat in as possible. You could also install solar panels to heat the water. This would reduce the costs of heating it as it is free, and would also have less of an impact to the environment. Conclusion:

I believe approaching this project with the mind set of making it as independently efficient as possible. You should try to use anything that you don’t need to pay for monthly or annually. Try to use solar panels to heat up the building, use rainwater harvesting and grey water harvesting to flush the toilets. Purchase the materials from a local supplier to reduce the amount of fuel used to extract the materials, create them, and get them transported. Try and use materials that won’t effect the habitat of animals. When dealing with waste products, have bins located at the main locations in which people will pass it, any food that is wasted should be kept separate which you could have separate bins for, waste coming from us could be sent to a processing centre to be cleansed into compost. Ensure there are bins for recycling, e.g. cans or bottles, paper. You can use strategies in regards to the amount of water to use, when work should begin and finish. Should you try get permission to have the road closed off or leave it as it would create too much of a disturbance? There is a lot of factors to take in when deciding on what route to take for a project, but for this particular one, it would be, in my own opinion, to make it as independently sustainable as possible.

http://planningguidance.planningportal.gov.uk/blog/guidance/environmental-impact-assessment/the-purpose-of-environmental-impact-assessment/ http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/cis36.pdf
http://www.belleville.k12.wi.us/bhs/health/environment/nitrogen_oxide.htm http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/water-efficiency-construction http://england.lovefoodhatewaste.com/node/215
http://www.co-operative.coop/our-ethics/our-plan/protecting-the-environment/waste-and-packaging/ http://schools.cbe.ab.ca/b628/studentwork/njjsites/impacts.html http://www.conserve-energy-future.com/causes-and-effects-of-noise-pollution.php http://www.environmentalleader.com/2012/01/05/how-traffic-jams-affect-air-quality/

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