Hoima — An environmental baseline survey on the proposed land for the establishment of an oil refinery at Kabaale in Buseruka sub-county, Hoima district will start in January.
Bashir Hangi, the refinery project's communications officer said the study aims at assessing future environmental impacts that may accrue during refinery construction and oil production.
He made the remarks during a one-day dialogue with Bunyoro Kingdom officials on the environmental management and land issues in the oil and gas sector at Kijungu Hill Hotel in Hoima municipality.
The meeting was organised by CNOOC and Tullow oil that are among the oil companies licensed to undertake oil exploration in the AlbertineGraben.
The establishment of the oil refinery that will process crude oil for local consumption and export comes after commercial deposits worth 3.5 billion barrels of oil were discovered in the AlbertineGrabben in 2006.
Hangi said the survey will be carried out by Green Impacts development services and is expected to take four months.
"We have taken the consultants to the 29 square kilometres of land that is earmarked for the refinery. They will submit their inception report and we will discuss it to allow them start work probably after Christmas," he said.
Hangi said the firm will also document the state of water sources around the refinery since it requires a lot of water.
He explained that this will help ascertain whether the refinery will strain the water bodies around so that they look for alternative sources of water.