Kuwait Environmental Remediation Program (KERP): Criteria for Site Selection and Expected Benefits of The Revegetation Projects
Aisha Al-Barood1, Hussain Al-Kandari2, Srinivasan Vedhapuri3
1. Author, Kuwait Oil Company, Ahmadi, Kuwait. E-mail address: Abarood@kockw.com
2. Author, Kuwait Oil Company, Ahmadi, Kuwait. E-mail address: HAAlkandari@kockw.com
3. Author, Kuwait Oil Company, Ahmadi, Kuwait. E-mail address: Svedhapuri@kockw.com
Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) is implementing the remediation and revegetation projects in the South East Kuwait (SEK) and North Kuwait (NK) oil fields. These projects are executed under the supervision of Kuwait National Focal Point (KNFP) and funded by the United Nations Compensation Commission (UNCC) as part of the Kuwait Environmental Remediation Program (KERP).
The KERP is undertaking one of the world’s largest revegetation projects, which is a legacy of the 1990/91 Gulf War. A revegetation program under Claim 5000454 (2) within the KERP contaminated features.
The revegetation projects would cover approximately 42 km2 of land under the control of KOC. The revegetation sites have been selected based on the “Claim 5000454(2) and Claim 5000450(3) requirements” as recommended by “F4” Panel of the UNCC. Logistically, the areas have an easy access and are located inside the treatment pads and landfill areas, outside the active oilfields of the Company with minimal or no conflict with current or future Company developments and/or operations and will therefore remain permanently under revegetation. Most important factor for the selection of revegetation areas was to combat sand encroachment and protect the areas affected by dust storms in KOC oil fields. The area is planned to be revegetated with about approximately 9,473,781 plants of 12 species that are native to Kuwait.
The UNCC has advised the need for the application of modern remediation/revegetation approaches to accelerate the recovery of native vegetation and restore the ecological functioning of the impacted areas to pre-invasion levels. Furthermore, the forthcoming revegetation project is considered essential to reintroduce native plants and create favorable conditions for their establishment and growth in order to achieve the ecological function. This paper will elucidate the basis for the selection of revegetation areas, explain how the locations would help in combatting sand encroachment and areas affected by dust storms and clarify to what extent the objectives and benefits of the project can be achieved.
Key words: Remediation, Re-vegetation, Native plants, Selection of areas.
Pages: 19 – 26 | Full PDF Paper