In face of the rapid decline of dolphin numbers, the the EIA report for HKIA’s third runway expansion project has not taken the precautionary principles into account when assessing the impacts of the reclamation on the Chinese white dolphins.
The EIA report is misleading that it has a section on the establishment of new marine protected areas under the construction phase mitigation and precautionary measures, when such establishment would only take place during the operational phase
- This will certainly lead to some misunderstandings that such habitat loss will also be mitigated during the construction phase.
- The report failed to provide evidence that other measures during the construction phase can lessen the impact of the 650 hectares of habitat loss while the “short-term residual impacts can be considered acceptable”.
- Also, it is very misleading to state that the habitat loss due to construction would become permanent in the operation phase because habitat loss will become permanent as soon as the construction phase begins.