Environment and development
in coastal regions and in small islands

Refinery plan gets NCDC approval

THE National Capital District Commission's Physical Planning Board has given concept approval to the proposed InterOil Refinery at Napa Napa.

Physical Planning Board chairman Bernard Kipit has inspected the project site with his senior advisers and said he is impressed with the extent and quality of the preparation work undertaken so far. Mr Kipit, who is also the acting City Administrator, said his administration recognises that the project will bring substantial benefits, not only to the capital city, but also to the country as a whole. He said his board was now awaiting submission of the detailed plans for the entire buildings and structures, which must be submitted and evaluated periodically as work on the various stages of the project proceeds.

The refinery is designed to produce unleaded petrol, leaded petrol, jet fuel, kerosene, diesel, marine burker fuel and industrial fuel oil. Crude oil will be brought to the refinery by ocean-going tankers since there is no overland pipe network for movement of Kutubu or Gobe crude. Distribution of products within PNG will be by sea as well as road transport. The development will comprise the refinery itself, a tank farm, workshops, jetty facilities, administration building, a fire station, utility area and a road tanker loading station. Fresh water to the refinery will be produced through seawater desalination; a desalination plant will be established on site. The project will have its own in-house electrical power generation facility. Road access to the site has already been upgraded by the developers. It will be further improved as the project proceeds.

The environment plan was approved by the Minister for Environment and Conservation in 1998. The developers will work closely with the local traditional landowners to ensure that they receive benefits and that adverse impacts are minimised. The estimated cost of the project is US$170 million, which at present exchange rates, is K554 million. It will have substantial benefits for the local, regional and national economies.

Work is already well advanced on the bulk earthworks required at the site in advance of the construction work, which is to follow.

Source: The National Newspaper, 16 February 2001


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