The Macau government started to collect opinions and suggestions from the public Thursday on the report of the ongoing environmental assessment of an undersea tunnel project between the land reclamation areas known as Zone A and Zone B, the Lands, Public Works and Transport Bureau (DSSOPT) said in a statement .
According to the statement, the local government has commissioned the South China Sea Institute of Oceanology of the Chinese Academy of Science to carry out the environmental assessment of the project. The Guangzhou-based institute has completed drafting the environmental assessment report.
Residents can submit their opinions and suggestions until July 3 by letter, phone, fax and email to the bureau or the entity tasked with carrying out the environmental assessment, the statement said. Residents can go to https://www.dssopt.gov.mo/zh_HANT/home/information/id/231 to check details on the project and the environmental assessment work, in both Chinese and Portuguese languages.
The environmental assessment drafted by the South China Sea Institute of Oceanology that can be downloaded from the website is available in Chinese only.
The Zone A reclamation area lies between the north-eastern coast of the peninsula and the western shore of the man-made island for the Macau checkpoint of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (HZMB). The Zone B reclamation area lies south of Nape (the Portuguese acronym for New Outer Harbour Land Reclamation). Zone B and Nape are adjacent to each other.
According to the statement, the tunnel will connect the southern area of Zone A and Zone B via Avenida Dr. Sun Yat-Sen – the waterfront avenue in Nape. The tunnel will go under the Macau-Taipa Friendship Bridge.
Currently, Zone A is connected with the peninsula only via a link to the busy Oriental Pearl roundabout at the peninsula’s north-eastern coast. The link is currently the only way to the Macau checkpoint of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (HZMB).
According to the statement, the 1,300-metre-long tunnel will have four vehicular lanes – two in each direction, with a speed limit of 60 kilometres per hour.
According to the statement, the public opinion collection process for the environmental assessment of the undersea tunnel project is divided into three phase.
The first phase was carried out between September 12 and 28 last year, which was for the bureau to collect opinions on the way the environmental assessment task should be conducted, during which no opinions were however received.
The second phase was carried out between December last year and January, during which the bureau received 257 opinions from individuals and nine opinions from associations on the provisional findings of the environmental assessment.
The third phase, which is underway, aims to collect public opinion on the recently-completed environmental assessment report, according to the statement.
According to the statement, the environmental assessment report suggests that the entity tasked with building the tunnel shall take appropriate measures to mitigate the possible adverse impact on the surrounding environment.
According to the statement, the environmental assessment report has concluded that the environmental impact of the project can be limited within an acceptable range, provided that the enterprise carrying out the project strictly implements the relevant strategies and measures. The report asserts that the project is feasible in terms of environmental protection.