The project consisted of three main parts:
Upstream: drilling and development of gas production wells and associated production infrastructure at the Surgil Field including expansion of the existing complex gas treatment unit.
Pipelines: construction and operation of below ground gas and condensate pipelines to connect the Surgil Field to the new gas chemical complex.
Downstream: construction and operation of a gas chemical complex and associated infrastructure. The principal exports from the gas chemical complex are high density polyethylene and high density polypropylene.
Challenges and solutions
Environment and social impact assessment (ESIA)
Undertaken in accordance with the Equator Principles and IFC and Asian Development Bank standards. Key environmental considerations were water resource management, terrestrial ecology, waste management and emissions to air. A number of baseline studies were undertaken by a local environmental consultant under our guidance. Pre-defined significance criteria was applied to each discipline to determine the potential effects and the level of mitigation required. Consideration was given to ensuring the project would have a positive effect on the local community.
Consultation and informing the community
As part of the ESIA documentation, a public consultation and disclosure plan was prepared. This strategic document set out appropriate consultation with stakeholders.
Environmental and social management plan (ESMP)
We produced an ESMP to ensure transparent and effective monitoring, prevention, minimisation, mitigation, compensation and off-setting measures. The ESMP ensures that environmental, health and safety and social performance of Uz-Kor meets international standards (including ADB Safeguards Policy Statements and IFC sector EHS guidelines) and best practice.
A key challenge was to safeguard the rights and promote the development of the indigenous Karakalpak people, historically marginalised around the Aral Sea region. The ESMP locked in employment and training quotas for local men and women to enhance the project's benefits for these sectors of society and the communities affected.