After turning the first sod earlier this year (See: Bye, Bye Tank Farm), both Transnet Ports Authority’s (TNPA) Port of Ngqura and Oil Tanking Grindrod Calulo Holdings (OTGC) are currently on track with the 24-month development period to commission the new liquid bulk Tank Farm in the port at the end of 2020.
With environmental compliance and the enhancement of the Nelson Mandela Bay economy as top priorities, various contracts have been awarded already – approximately 80% to local suppliers – and work is in full swing.
Having completed Phase 1 of the infrastructure required to service the site on 28 March 2014, TNPA commenced with Phase 2 in November 2018 when it awarded the contract for environmental search and rescue activities. This entailed the removal of indigenous and endangered plant and animals within the footprint of where construction activities will take place. These activities have been successfully completed. Apart from having obtained all the required permits, procurement is currently at an advanced stage – three of the main construction work packages have already been awarded. Another four have been advertised and the project team has made its recommendations to the National Acquisition Council.
The following contracts have been awarded to date – Environmental Search and Rescue to Zingce Environmental Solutions, Environmental Services to Keokoma Pty Ltd, the Port Entrance Plaza to Toro Ya Africa Socrasync JV and the Berth B100 Fire Fighting system to SA Five Engineering.
Phase 2 includes the construction of the following landside development, forming the link between the Tank Farm and the berth – environmental search and rescue to relocate plants and animals, a 3km access road to link the Tank Farm to Berth B100, a fuel line servitude, the Port Entrance Plaza, CCTV and access control, electrical substations and lighting, perimeter security fencing, data and telecommunications, a fire fighting system at Berth B100 and civil work at Berth B100.
Having started with the construction of Phase 1 in January 2019, OTGC has completed the search and rescue of fauna and flora, the archaeology report of the site, the clearing of all vegetation and the soil has been stripped. The palaeontology inspections and the bulk earthworks for the ground and platform preparation is ongoing.
The following contracts have been awarded to date – the environmental specialist duties to Phila Environmental Health & Safety, site security to Falcon, the Health & Safety agent is JNR Lapere and the bulk earthworks principal contractor is CSV Construction. Sub-contractors include Rapid Impact Compaction (RIC), MB Fencing, Sanitech, Isidingo Security and Surplan.
Phase 1 includes the search and rescue of fauna and flora, the provision of liquid bulk import facilities at Berth B100, 3,5km pipelines from the berth to the Tank Farm, bulk storage for up to 60 000 cbm, road loading with a Vapor Recovery Unit (VRU), state-of-the-art firefighting facilities, site drainage facilities, offices and other buildings. Provision has also been made for the receipt, storage and distribution of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG). Future development, to be implemented on demand, includes additional bulk liquid storage of up to 790 000 cbm.
Both TNPA and OTGC have appointed environmental specialists to comply with the strict environmental legislation prior, during and after construction. The process is progressing well and is on track with the planned schedule.
Both parties have completed the identification, removal and relocation of flora and fauna species of special concern. Approximately 6 000 plant species have been rescued and relocated into a temporary nursery site and other protected open spaces in the port in 2016 and 2018. In March 2019 another 1 567 plants representing 41 different species and various mammal, reptile and insect species were successfully rescued and relocated during vegetation clearance on the OTGC project footprint. Maintenance and monitoring is ongoing.
They are also monitoring all archaeological and palaeontological material in this area. A qualified archaeologist confirmed that no archaeological artefacts were found during and after vegetation clearance. A qualified palaeontologist will inspect all excavations for the presence of fossils. The environmental management will also include the monitoring of dust and waste management.
The new Tank Farm in the Port of Ngqura will make way for an exciting new development in the Port of Port Elizabeth, which will demand the decommissioning of the existing liquid bulk facilities in the port. After the commissioning of the Ngqura facility, the PE Tank Farm operators will wind down operations over a 4-month period, where after the decommissioning and rehabilitation will commence. TNPA and these operators are working closely to finalise a decommissioning and remediation plan, to be approved by the Department of Environmental Affairs. According to the Waste Act the current operators are responsible for the demolition and rehabilitation of the land. The rehabilitated land is to be handed back to TNPA in a condition that complies with the relevant legislation and Transnet’s Sustainable Development Strategy for further development. It is estimated that the decommissioning and rehabilitation will take from 36 to 48 months.
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