Environmental impact assessment of structural flood mitigation measures by a rapid impact assessment matrix (RIAM) technique: A case study in Metro Manila, Philippines.

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tokyo Metropolitan University, 1-1 Minami-Ohsawa, Hachioji, Tokyo, 192-0397, Japan. Electronic address: .
Science of The Total Environment (Impact Factor: 3.26). 04/2013; 456-457C:137-147. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.03.063
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In recent decades, the practice of environmental impact assessment (EIA) in the planning processes of infrastructure projects has created significant awareness on the benefits of environmentally sound and sustainable urban development around the world. In the highly urbanized megacities in the Philippines, like Metro Manila, high priority is given by the national government to structural flood mitigation measures (SFMM) due to the persistently high frequency of flood-related disasters, which are exacerbated by the on-going effects of climate change. EIA thus, should be carefully and effectively executed to maximize the potential benefits of the SFMM. The common practice of EIA in the Philippines is generally qualitative and lacks clear methodology in evaluating multi-criteria systems. Thus, this study proposes the use of the rapid impact assessment matrix (RIAM) technique to provide a method that would systematically and quantitatively evaluate the socio-economic and environmental impacts of planned SFMM in Metro Manila. The RIAM technique was slightly modified to fit the requirements of this study. The scale of impact was determined for each perceived impact, and based on the results, the planned SFMM for Metro Manila will likely bring significant benefits; however, significant negative impacts may also likely occur. The proposed modifications were found to be highly compatible with RIAM, and the results of the RIAM analysis provided a clear view of the impacts associated with the implementation of SFMM projects. This may prove to be valuable in the practice of EIA in the Philippines.

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