The concessionaire of the Nicaragua Grand Canal Project, HKND Group, has entered into an agreement with Friends of the San Juan River Foundation (FUNDAR), a Nicaraguan environmental NGO, for the development of the first Biodiversity Management Plans for the canal project.
The deal includes the development of Riverine and Terrestrial Biodiversity Management Plans, Environmental Offset Plans along the canal route, as well as Freshwater and Terrestrial Biodiversity Action Plans for Brito area in Rivas.
In strict accordance with the recommendations made in the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) undertaken by the British company Environmental Resources Management (ERM), HKND will develop a complete set of environmental management plans for the canal route, among which, the Biodiversity Management Plans are crucial elements.
“Completion of the biodiversity management plans will be another important milestone in the development of the canal,” Bill Wild, Chief Project Advisor of HKND Group, said.
As part of the environmental plan for the canal project, the Biodiversity Management Plans that FUNDAR will develop will be focusing on providing biodiversity protection procedures and measures for the terrestrial and riverine ecosystems to be impacted by the construction and operation of the Nicaragua Grand Canal, as well as the freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems in Brito area in Rivas, so as to ensure that the project will have a Net Positive Impact on forests and the wildlife along the canal route.
Nicaragua Grand Canal is a proposed 172-mile waterway, 230 to 520 metres wide and 27.6 metres deep, making it longer, wider and deeper than the 51-mile Panama Canal to the south.
Based on the project design, it should include 6 sub projects: the canal (including locks), 2 ports, a free trade zone, holiday resorts, an international airport and several roads. In addition, there will be construction of a power station, cement factory, steel factory and other related facilities.
In November 2015, HKND received an environmental permit from the Government of Nicaragua for the canal project having determined that it would have a positive environmental and social impact.