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I. Project Name: ADB TA- 9802-TIM REG: Development of Solar IPP in Timor Leste - Consulting Firm- EDTL.

Location: Timor Leste
Client : Asian Development Bank

Ongoing Project

Narrative description of Project:
EDTL is planning to carry out the project preparation and tendering of up to 100 MW solar independent power producer (IPP) project with a potential installation of a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) and a transmission line to evacuate power generated from the solar PV plant to EDTL’s grid (the “Project”). A feasibility study needs to be undertaken before the project can be tendered out. The exact size of the Solar plant and BESS is to be determined as part of the feasibility study. A grid impact assessment also needs to be carried out to understand the grid capacity in Timor-Leste to evacuate the solar power and the grid strengthening required and to identify suitable interconnection points for the solar PV plant.

The Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Office of the Public Private Partnership (OPPP) is to work as the mandated transaction advisor (“Transaction Advisor”) to EDTL and will assist EDTL in recruiting and overseeing/supervising the work of the technical consultant whereas the payments to the Consultant will be made directly by EDTL.

Along with the feasibility and grid impact studies of the solar project, an environmental and social (E&S) assessment of the impact of the plant is also proposed to be carried out. The scope of current feasibility study consists of three proposed sites such as (i) Manatuto, (ii) Baucau and (iii) Liquica.

Description of actual services provided in the assignment: The scope of work includes support to the EDTL and ADB's overall project due diligence efforts to ensure that ADB's due diligence requirements in terms of social safeguard assessments are complied with. The social assessment would include the solar plant, BESS, collector substations, transmission lines and access roads and associated area of impact and influence.
The activities include but not limited to:

  • Conduct socio-economic, health, heritage and cultural resources, and indigenous peoples studies
  • Conducting involuntary resettlement due diligence and preparation of resettlement planning documents in accordance with the Timor-Leste laws and regulations, and, as required, ADB Safeguard Policy Statement (SPS) or World Bank Environmental and Social Framework (ESF), Equator Principles and international best practice.
  • Assist EDTL in preparation of Resettlement Plan if there is displacement due to land acquisition or involuntary restriction on land use or on access to legally designated parks and protected area.
  • Preparation of Due Diligence Report for the components that do not entail resettlement impacts
  • Preparation of social audit report for involuntary resettlement actions conducted in anticipation of the Project in accordance with the requirements of the ADB SPS.
  • Conducting indigenous peoples due diligence and preparation of indigenous peoples planning (IPP) documents in accordance with the Timor-Leste laws and regulations, and, as required, ADB SPS or WB ESF, Equator Principles and international best practice. An Indigenous Peoples Plan (IPP) may be prepared if the Project will positively and/or negatively affect Indigenous Peoples/communities.
  • Conducting a Poverty, Social and Gender Analysis (PSGA) of the project and identifying social and gender benefits, impacts and associated mitigation measures. A brief stakeholder analysis will be conducted as part of the PSGA, and a stakeholder communication plan will be prepared to guide EDTL.
  • Preparation of Gender Action Plan

II. Project Name: ADB TA-9777 INO: Sustainable Infrastructure Assistance Program Phase II - Supporting Sustainable and Efficient Energy Policies and Investments (Subproject 2)

Location: Indonesia
Client : Asian Development Bank

Starting Date: 02/2022
End Date: 08/2022

Narrative description of Project:

The Asian Development Bank provides loan to support to PLN, Indonesia’s national electrical utility, to prepare its Environmental Social Governance (ESG) and Sustainable Financial Plan. PLN is currently developing its ESG Strategy, the primary objective of which is to enable PLN to demonstrate its commitments to improve its ESG performance which, in turn, is expected to lead to improved ESG ratings for PLN from major international ratings agencies. These improved ESG ratings will allow PLN better access to the sustainable financing market, supporting its ability to fund the energy transition in Indonesia at low cost.

PLN also wishes to develop a Sustainable Financing Plan. This plan will set out PLN’s financing needs to implement the ESG Strategy and, at a high-level, the expected mix of financing sources including the use of sustainable financing. The Sustainable Financing Plan will be integrated with other ongoing initiatives including PLN’s Sustainable Financing Framework and the planned issuance of green bonds.

The assistance under this assignment support PLN in preparing its draft ESG Strategy and draft Sustainable Financing Plan, to a level suitable for submission to PLN’s Board of Directors for review and approval.

The ESG Strategy will set out PLN’s commitments and accompanying verifiable targets for improving its ESG performance. The strategy will be aligned to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and is expected to cover the period to 2040 with intermediate targets being set as necessary. The environmental, social and governance components of the ESG Strategy should align with the national legal and regulatory framework and both national and international standards, including in particular with land acquisition and indigenous people’s safeguards standards. These should include, but are not limited to, PLN’s existing environmental and social safeguards , PLN’s existing commitments to Gender Equality and Women Empowerment, PLN’s commitments on SDGs and best practice international standards.

Description of actual services provided in the assignment:
The scope of work includes support to the development of the social component of PLN’s ESG strategy. The scope of the tasks involves:

  • Identification of key criteria, assessment of PLN’s current performance, proposals for commitments to be included in the ESG strategy and consultations on these with respect to the management of social impacts
  • Consultation with affected communities including vulnerable groups, community development, employee consultation and compliance with national and international best practice social safeguard policies and frameworks.
  • Proposing KPIs and targets with respect to social safeguards and social development matters with particular emphasis as above, assisting in market soundings on these KPIs and targets and updating as necessary.
  • Drafting social component of the ESG Strategy, responding to comments and questions, and finalising the ESG Strategy.
  • Provide high-level estimates of any cost implications from implementing the social aspects of the ESG Strategy.

III. Project Name: ADB SC-116134 REG: Social Safeguards Monitoring and Evaluation Consultant

Location: India
Client : Asian Development Bank

Start date (month/year): 27/10/2021
Completion date (month/year): 31/12/2021

Narrative description of Project: SAEN requires help to undertake detailed safeguard review of projects with significant adverse social impacts and risks in order to comply with ADB's Safeguard Policy Statement (2009). This includes periodic site visits. Safeguard review is critical to providing a robust assessment of the borrower's social safeguard performance each year and also helps SAEN to develop capacity of its borrowers and their contractors. Due to COVID 19, this requirement remains unfilled for few projects. The present assignment is to support SAEN for conducting social audits for these projects. The task includes review of documentation, field visits, interviews with the Borrower, regulatory authorities, and other stakeholders, including affected people, local communities, and members of the project workforce to help ADB to ensure compliance with the ADB social safeguards requirements and to monitor project social performance. The social safeguards monitoring reviews and requirement index will include the following projects:

1. [44426-016]Green Energy Corridor and Grid Strengthening Project [B|B|C]
2. [48224-002]Demand-Side Energy Efficiency Sector Project [C|C|C]
3. [48224-003]Demand-Side Energy Efficiency Sector Project - Additional Financing [C|C|C]
4. [52196-001]Scaling Up Demand-Side Energy Efficiency Sector Project [C|C|C]
5. [50193-003]Maharashtra Rural High Voltage Distribution System Expansion Program [B|B|C]
6. [51308-004]Meghalaya Power Distribution Sector Improvement Project [B|B|B]
7. [47101-004] Assam Power Sector Investment Program - Tranche 3 [A|A|A]
8. [51395-003] Uttar Pradesh Power Distribution Network Rehabilitation Project – Tranche 1 [B|B|C]
9. [53192-001] Bengaluru Smart Energy Efficient Power Distribution Project [B|C|C]

Description of actual services provided in the assignment: The scope of work includes support to ADB’s social due diligence and help ADB to ensure compliance with the ADB social safeguard requirements and to monitor social performance.
The activities include but not limited to:

  • Preparation of consolidated lists of safeguards requirements for SAEN projects under implementation, as set out in the project RP/IPP/RIPP plus loan agreement and PAM
  • Development of social monitoring templates that borrowers can use to improve their social implementation on ground.
  • Assist EA to develop project specific consultation and disclosure materials.
  • Site visits were undertaken to help confirm the status of compliance—including by consulting with local people about their knowledge of project IR/IP risks and impacts, history of engagement with the project, and status of compensation and livelihood restoration activities
  • For projects where design work occurred after Resettlement Plan (RP), Indigenous Peoples Plan (IPP) and/or Resettlement and Indigenous Peoples Plan (RIPP) preparation, final design was reviewed to confirm that there have been no "unanticipated impacts" in respect of changes in alignment etc., as compared to those assessed in the RP/IPP/RIPP.
  • Review and Assessment of alternative design/ alignment with respect to social and environmental impacts, if there are any representations by Project Affected People to alter design
  • Evaluation of project participation and consultation strategies and consultations with the PAPs in the ongoing consultation process
  • Evaluation and updating the templates of Social Monitoring Reports to adequately capture the relevant information to ensure compliance with Project Resettlement Plans,
  • Assessing the functioning of the Grievance Redressal Mechanism
  • Providing on the job training to the Borrower and the Contractors, whilst undertaking the detailed safeguard review of issues to look out for during their site walkovers, flagging issues that should be reported within the social monitoring reports.
  • Conducting field visit to Assam Power Investment Report
  • Preparation of the Safeguards Portfolio Review Report

IV. Project Name: Maharashtra Rural High Voltage Distribution System - Consulting Firm- Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Co. Ltd. (MSEDCL)

Location: Maharashtra, India
Client : Asian Development Bank

Narrative description of Project:
The Asian Development Bank provides loan to the State of Maharashtra to support high voltage distribution systems (HVDS) in rural areas of Maharashtra for agricultural supply. The state and MSEDCL intend to take phased investments through feeder segregation and HVDS through (i) continuing feeder separation of rural domestic and rural agricultural feeders, (ii) release of all new agricultural connections on HVDS, (iii) eventual replacement of low voltage rural agricultural feeders covering all agricultural consumers. The program connects about 156,000 new agricultural consumers between 2019 and 2021. The program covers the regions of Vidarbha, Marathwada, Konkan western Maharashta and northern Maharashtra

Description of actual services provided in the assignment:
The objective of the study is to assess various impacts and carrying out necessary primary surveys related to social, involuntary resettlement, indigenous peoples, environment impact, gender assessment and public consultations for the project. The scope of study broadly covers

  • Baseline socio-economic survey
  • Census survey (land acquisition and resettlement survey) for permanent impacts such as substations and other associated facilities related to projects,
  • Assessment of temporary impacts along the Right of Way for the transmission lines through inventory surveys
  • Public consultation/ focused group discussions were conducted through informal public meetings
  • Focused group discussions among women groups. Consultations among women have been conducted through focused group discussions (FGDs)
  • Preparation of social impact assessment report, Resettlement Plan

V. Project Name: ADB TA-9874 REG: Scaling up Demand Side Energy Efficiency Sector Project - Consulting Firm- Energy Efficiency Services Ltd.

Location: Maharashtra, India
Client : Asian Development Bank

Start date (month/year): 03/2022
Completion date (month/year): 04/2022

Narrative description of Project:

Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EES) has requested a sovereign guaranteed loan of $250 million from ADB’s ordinary capital resources to help finance the project. Clean Technology Fund (CTF) will provide loan co financing equivalent to $46 million, to be administered by ADB. ADB finance includes the expenditures in relation to: (i) smart meters; (ii) distributed solar photovoltaic systems; and (iii) e-vehicles and charging infrastructure. The selection criteria for the loan processing were to ensure that that all subprojects are appraised, selected and approved in compliance with the requirements given in EARF and RF. The EESL will ensure that each subproject meets Category “C” of ADB’s safeguard policy statement 2009 for environment, involuntary resettlement and indigenous people. Any subprojects which do not meet the criteria will not be eligible for financing under the Project.

It is found that EESL has selected some solar PV sites which are not within the existing and fenced substation land as envisaged and agreed during project preparation and loan signing. This deviates from the commitment as a principle to select sites that go beyond the existing substation. EESL has adopted two additional category of subprojects selection such as (i) solar site contiguous to the existing substation and (ii) solar sites completely away from the existing substation. Such new solar subprojects require additional power evacuation line (though small in length) which may trigger impact. Therefore, the changes require a due diligence cum audits as per ADB’s SPS requirements to assess the impacts and confirm whether the project category remains the same for IR and IP and if there is change in category, thereby preparation and implementation of a corrective action plan.

The scope of due diligence includes three categories of solar sites (i) within existing substation -17 substations, (ii) contiguous to existing substation - 1 and (iii) away from the substation - 8 . The due diligence also covers the associated 11 kV evacuation line for the contiguous and away sites. The scope and objective of this due diligence study is to assess the status and process of land acquisition, involuntary resettlement and indigenous people for the solar PV sites and impacts related to evacuation line. The task includes but not limited to record the land acquisition process; assess any permanent or temporary impacts along the evacuation lines; collect and review information from field offices; consultations with local people and Gram Panchayat as necessary and apprising EESL on ADB’s safeguards requirements, categorization and eligibility criteria for subproject selection.

Description of actual services provided in the assignment: The scope of work includes support to the ADB's overall project due diligence efforts to ensure that ADB's due diligence requirements in terms of social safeguard assessments are complied with. Prepare social safeguards due diligence and audits and conducting necessary consultations to conform whether subprojects comply with ADB’ s SPS requirements, loan covenants and the safeguards framework as agreed during the loan approval for the ongoing sector loan to EESL in India. The due diligence will conform the project’s category on Involuntary Resettlement and Indigenous Peoples as per the SPS, 2009 and shall conform whether the subprojects qualify for the eligibility criteria.
The activities include but not limited to:

  • Ensure all subproject activities are screened and categorized for social impacts
  • Work with EESL to identify the impacts from the activities, if any. Also, identify if any of the activities trigger Category A & B for Involuntary Resettlement and A & B for indigenous peoples
  • Filed visits to solar plant sites as required to identify the land ownership and any impact on involuntary resettlement and indigenous peoples
  • To record the land acquisition process
  • To assess any permanent or temporary impacts along the evacuation lines
  • Work with MSEDCL to organize, collect and review information from field offices, support reviews and support to finalize a streamlined screening form for activities that would form part of prior results.
  • Collection of social related data and carrying out consultations and social surveys (viii) Carry out consultations with local people and Gram Panchayat as necessary
  • Apprising EESL on ADB’s safeguards requirements, categorization and eligibility criteria for subproject selection
  • Submission of consolidated Social Due Diligence cum Audit Report for further discussions with EESL and ADB