Recommendations for the ESIA for East African oil pipeline - Uganda

15 July 2019

Fort Portal, 1-5 July - The NCEA presented its review findings of the ESIA for the Ugandan part of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP). A 1445 km long pipeline intended to transport crude oil from Kabaale in Uganda to the Chongoleani peninsula in Tanzania. According to the NCEA, the current ESIA does not yet provide all the content nor the form necessary for sound decision-making.

For example :

  • The ESIA raises high expectations with respect to jobs and other economic benefits. Based on the provided data and (lack of) reasoning/justification, this seems exaggerated.
  • The proposed technique for water and wetland crossings (open trench) has the potential of significant negative impacts, particularly in wetlands. This seems to be ignored and the ESIA report does not make clear that/why the proposed technology is acceptable.
  • The situation with landownership seems tricky: proposed mitigation measures are too vague. It is not sufficiently substantiated why the impacts will be negligible.

  • The energy/CO2 paragraphs are insufficient: most emission sources are left out, the calculations are not transparent and the outcome seems unrealistically low. In addition, the cumulative CO2 emissions of all oil development projects (Tilenga, Kingfisher, Refinery, EACOP etc.) have not been presented.

  • Graphically highlighted messages are mainly positive or reassuring.
  • The summarizing recommendations are benefit–oriented only.
  • The ESIA does not explain what the key concerns are.

Therefore, the NCEA recommends to provide additional information on the 5 key weaknesses of the report and to re-write the non-technical - and executive summaries. The summaries should provide a good and easily understandable overview of the most important impacts of the EACOP project and corresponding mitigation and/or compensation measures. For more information, please visit the project page.