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Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya, March 2006

Contents and overview, Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya, March 2006
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Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for
Coastal Area of Kenya
March 2006
United Nation Development Program
Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland
E -
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KenSea ­ Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya has
been financed by the Fund for Danish Consultancy Services and has been
implemented by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in
Kenya. The editor is responsible for all results and conclusions presented in
the report, which do not necessarily reflect the position of the Fund for
Danish Consultancy Services and United Nations Development Program-
This publication may be reproduced in whole or in part and in any form,
for educational or non-profit purposes, without special permission from the
copyright holder, provided that acknowledgement of the source is made. It
is recommended that the publication is cited as follows:
Tychsen, J. 2006 (ed.): KenSea. Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of
Kenya, 76 pp. Copenhagen; Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland
(GEUS); ISBN 87-7871-191-6
GEUS would appreciate receiving a copy of any publication that uses this
publication as a source. No use of this book may be made for resale or for
any other commercial purpose whatsoever without prior permission in wri-
ting from GEUS.
Editor: Mr. John Tychsen, GEUS
Technical editor: Mr. Henrik Klinge Pedersen, GEUS
Cover and lay-out: Mr. Henrik Klinge Pedersen, GEUS
Photographs: Mr. Ole Geertz-Hansen, AquaSim
Maps: Sources given at each map.
Print: Mr. Afet Neimi, GEUS
ISBN 87-7871-191-6
© Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), 2006
Ministry of the Environment
10 Oester Voldgade
DK-1350 Copenhagen
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Table of Contents
List of Abbreviations
1.1 National Oil Spill Response Contingency Plan (NOSRCP)
2.1 Climate
2.2 Hydrology
2.3 Geology and Geomorphology
2.4 Oceanography
2.5 Coastal Ecosystems
3.1 Historical and Cultural Resources
3.2 Fisheries 33
3.3 Minerals and Energy Resources
3.4 Tourism
3.5 Conservation
4.1 The rational of Ranking
4.2 Definition and Concept of Ranking Sensitivity
4.3 Sensitivity Ranking Used in the Atlas - Ranking of Coastal Features 43
5.1 Logistic and Topographic Maps
5.2 Coastal Resource Maps
5.3 Environmental Sensitivity Maps
Logistic and Topographic Map - Map Sheet 1 (1:50.000)
Coastal Resource Map - Map Sheet 1 (1:50.000)
Environmental Sensitivity Map - Map Sheet 1- 16 (1:50.000)
Environmental Sensitivity Map - Map Sheet A,B,C and D (1:25.000) 73-76
Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya
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List of Abbreviations
: Coast Development Authority
: Data Exchange Platform for the Horn of Africa
: Eastern Africa Atlas for Coastal Resources. Kenya
: Exclusive Economic Zone
: Environmental Sensitivity Index
: Federal Geographic Data Committee
: National Geospatial Data Clearinghouse
: The Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland
: Geographical Information System
: Government of Kenya
: Incident Command System
: International Maritime Office
: Kenya Environmental Sensitivity Atlas
: Kenya Marine Fisheries Research Institute
: Kenya Ports Authority
: Kenya Wildlife Service
: National Environmental Management Authority
NMOSCP : National Marine Oil Spill Contingency Plan
: Oil Spill Mutual Aid Group
: Survey of Kenya
: Terms of Reference
: United Nations Environmental Programme
: United Nations Development Programme
: United Nations Office for Project Services
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This report was produced by the Geological Survey of Denmark and
Greenland (GEUS).
Overall responsible for the KenSea project and the development of this
report was Project Manager Mr. John Tychsen (GEUS) who was assisted by
Mr. Ole Geertz-Hansen (AquaSim), Mr. Jesper Kofoed, (GeoQuest), Mr.
Anders Mosbech (NERI) and Mr. Harrison Ong'anda (KMFRI) ­ The
KenSea Team.
The development of the KenSea coastal resources database (KenseaBase)
and the Geographic Information System (GIS) framework, were undertaken
by Mr. Jesper Kofoed with assistance from Mr. Johannes Akiwumi
(DEPHA) and Mr. Mwangi Theuri (DEPHA). Data entry and map digiti-
zing were done by Mr. Alex Lugadiru (DEPHA) and Ms Jane Wanjiku
Wanyiri (DEPHA).
The text was compiled from contributions by members of the KenSea
Team. The editor and the members of the KenSea Team benefited greatly
from discussions, advice and assistance received from the following:
Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI)
Mr. Johnson Kazungu, Director
Mr. Steve Mwangi, Assistant Director
Dr. James. G. Kairo, Research Officer
Mr. Jared Bosire, Research Officer
Capt. Joseph Mwanthi, Master Fisherman
Miss. Gladys Okemwa. Deputy Vice-Chair Kescom/ Research Officer,
Mrs. Pamella Abuodha, Research Officer
Mrs. Pamela Ochieng', GIS Technician
Miss. Irene Githaiga, Administrative assistant/Director's office
Kenya Wildlife Service
Mr. Benjamin Kavu, Assistant Director
Mr. Mohamed Omar, Research Officer
Mrs. Teresa Muthui, GIS Officer.
Coast Development Authority
Dr. Boniface M.J. Mwandotto, Deputy Managing Director
Mr. Zachary Peter Odhiambo, Principal Research Officer
National Museums of Kenya
Dr. Helida A. Oyieke, Director of Research & Scientific Affairs
Mr. Oliver Nasirwa, Head of Secretariat, Wetland Biodiversity Monitoring
Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya
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Kenya Ports Authority
Mr. Peter W.K. Mbiriri, Incident Commander Team
Fishery Department
Mr. Leonard N. Thaibo, Assistant Fishery Officer
Mr. Ndegwa Stephen, Principal Research Officer
CORDIO East Africa
Dr. David Obura, Manager Cordio East Africa
The Wildlife Conservation Society. Kenya
Dr. Tim McClanahan, Manager WCSK
Mrs. Melita Samoilys, Regional Co-ordinator
Prof. Laurent Ntahugo, Regional Technical Co-ordinator
Mr. Sam Weru, Project Coordinator WWF Eastern Africa Regional
Survey of Kenya
Mr. Martin Obuyu, Principal Surveyer
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS)
Mr. Frantz Von Platen-Hallermund, Senior GIS-officer
Mrs. Birgit Jørgensen, Administrative Assistant
Mr. Henrik Klinge Pedersen, Leader of Graphic Section
Mr. Afet Niemi, Technician
Mr. Anthony Higgings, Research Scientist
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The problem of oil spill response can be complex if a decision has to be
made in short timelines of less than one day as is often the case. The know-
ledge of the spread and distribution of natural resources along the Kenyan
coast would be quite challenging to a command center grappling with ope-
rational and political pressure from various sectarian interests all seeking
satisfactory response during a spill incidence. In order to arrive at objective
compromise decision, information must be available in a speedy manner.
The new product, Kenya Sensitivity Atlas and its GIS database is taking
advantage of technology advancement to provide the much needed support
in effective decision process for management of the Marine and Coastal
Area of Kenya. The principal approach here is the move from static atlas to
a GIS electronic atlas.
The development of the atlas by Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research
Institute (KMFRI) is an integral part of the National Marine Oil Spill
Contingency Plan (NMOSCP). It provides an environmental data dictio-
nary to be utilized as a tool in risk assessment, clean up prioritization as
well as in selection of appropriate methods and tools of response.
The GIS datasets include information on environmental parameters and
socio-economics data along the coast of Kenya thereby providing vast
opportunities for secondary use. Information has been used to generate
hard copy and electronic maps showing the degree of sensitivity to oil spill.
This product is part of the Kenya Government's policy on poverty allevia-
tion whereby the Government ensures it has contingency plans and resour-
ces in place to combat disasters such as forest fires, floods, drought and oil
spills threatening to ruin the natural resource base which provides income
to its citizenry.
In addition the atlas represents the Government of Kenya's efforts in fulfil-
ling its obligations with respect to various conventions on prevention of
pollution including the International Convention on the Prevention of
Pollution by Ships (MARPOL 73/78), the Safety of Life at Seas (SOLAS),
the International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness and Response
Cooperation (OPRC90), the Civil Liability Convention (CLC92) and the
International Oil Pollution Compensation Fund (IOPC92).
This product therefore represents a significant step towards support for con-
servation of our vital marine resources.
DR. KAZUNGU, Johnson M.
Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya
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National Oil Spill Response Contingency Plan
The Kenya coastline extends some 600 kilometres from the border of Tan-
zania in the south to the border of Somalia in the north. Among its distinc-
tive features are the nearly continuous coast parallel fringing coral reef, the
Lamu archipelago, Marine National Parks and Reserves, sandy beaches,
Mombasa Creek as well as Wasini and other coral islands.
The Kenyan coast features a diverse marine environment including estuari-
es, mangroves, seagrass beds and intertidal reef platforms and coral reefs,
which are vital for the diversity and reproduction of marine organisms.
These coastal ecosystems systems are regarded as some of Kenya's most
valuable ecosystems; and some are protected by the six marine national
parks and reserves. These coastal ecosystems make up the basis for the live-
lihood of the large coastel population, but do on the other hand face serious
threats from the ever increasing human pressure through tourism, industrial
pollution, overfishing, destructive fishing, mangrove logging and other
unsustainable use of marine resources.
These highly productive ecosystems in the coastal area play a crucial role in
the socio-economic development of the country. The coastal economy de-
pends heavily on tourism and the tourism sector is dependent on Kenya's
coastal and marine resources, but the inhabitants and the visitors to the
coast are not the only pressure on the coastal environment. The coastal
environment is also at risk from maritime transportation activities at the
port and shipping along the coastline. It is estimated that at any given time
there are 50 ships in the major shipping lanes off the Kenya coast, approxi-
mately 9 are oil tankers with capacities ranging from 50000-250000 tons.
Most of this coastal tanker traffic passes 250 nautical miles offshore, howe-
ver with Mombassa harbour serving as the major port for Kenya as well as
the hinterland countries of Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia, Southern
Sudan, North Eastern Tanzania and Somalia the threat for an oil spill is
obvious. Further oil pollution may result from normal oil transportation
activities such as ship to shore transfers and upland tank storage at the port.
In recognition of risks posed by oil pollution the Government of Kenya and
the private oil industry have decided to develop a National Oil Spill Re-
sponse Contingency Plan (NOSRCP) with the purpose of enabling a spee-
dy and effective response by the Response Team at Kenya Port Authority
(KPA) within the territorial waters of Kenya. An important element of this
plan is the mapping of the coastal resources and the development of an En-
vironmental Sensitivity Atlas showing the sensitivity of the coast to marine
oil spill. This atlas should be utilized as a tool in vulnerability assessments
and provide oil spill responders with sufficient information allowing them
Coastal ecosystems
Tanker traffic
Spill response
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to prioritize the immediate response and the subsequent clean-up effort.
1.1.1 NMOSCP structure
The NMOSCP organization structure is based on the internationally recog-
nized Incident Command System (ICS). The Incident Commander in
Kenya includes an environment and wildlife adviser responsible for guiding
the Incident Commander on the priorities and method of response in each
habitat. This role has been assigned to scientists from institutions such as
Kenya Marine Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI).
Efforts are being made towards legalizing the draft NMOSCP by the
government and the stakeholders. United Nations Development Program
(UNDP) in Kenya has recognized the tremendous efforts that have been
made in the preparation of the development of the engineering/operational
phase of an oil spill response. Based on the work progress already made,
UNDP decided to provide - through the Danish Trust Fund at UNDP - fi-
nancial support to the development of phase II of the ongoing national oil
spill contingency planning process by facilitating the creation of the Envi-
ronmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya.
1.1.2 Project Implementation
The project was approved for funding by UNOPS in Copenhagen adminis-
trating the Danish Trust Funds at UNDP in 2004 and after an open bid-
ding process the contract was awarded to a Danish consortium with the
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS) as leading company.
The integrated database and GIS system to be developed during the project
was agreed to be installed at Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute
(KMFRI), having the responsibility for the shoreline classification in the
The Danish/Kenyan consortium and KMFRI agreed at an early stage in the
project implementation to use the KenSea (Kenya Environmental Sensiti-
vity Atlas) as an abbreviation for the project.
The project implementation was initiated in January 2005 with a workshop
for all stakeholders involved in the NMOSCP process and a number of
NGOs operating in the coastal zone of Kenya. The Workshop had the aim
of discussing the concept for the development of the environmental sensiti-
vity atlas presented by the KenSea Group. The workshop provided a very
good discussion of the preliminary priorities of features to be included in
the Atlas an a formula for the ranking of the environmental sensitivity of
the coastal area of Kenya. Further the workshop served as a forum to esta-
blish the formal contact to the data holding agencies, government institu-
tions, NGOs and the private sector.
In the 1990s the Eastern Africa Coastal and Marine Resources Database
and Atlas (UNEP 1998) was developed by the United Nations Environ-
mental Programme (UNEP) within the framework of the 1985 Eastern
Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya
Previous work
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Africa Action Plan for the Protection, Management and Development of
the Marine and Coastal Environment.
The EAF-14 datasets included a variety of information within bio-science,
geo-science and human-use with relevance to the present project, wherefore
some of the datasets from the EAF-14 have been incorporated either
directly or as guideline for further investigations. The main challenge of the
EAF-14 in this context is the fact that it has been produced in scale
1:250,000 implying that it has a lower degree of spatial precision than data
created in 1:50,000 requested for the KenSea project.
The EAF-14 database was transferred into the KenSea database (KenSea-
Base) and the 1: 250,000 maps were the basis for meetings with a large
number of data holders. All collected data was digitised and included in the
KenSeaBase and preliminary maps were printed. Based on these preliminary
maps a field program for data verification and data collection was deve-
loped. The results of the field work were integrated in the KenSeaBase and
final maps were produced.
It was decided during the planning of the project that a traditional full scale
field survey with a team offshore in a boat supported by a team on land was
Aerial photo missions
Figure 1-1 By removing the door of the plane it was possible to achieve clear and oblique photos of the
coastline. All photos were positioned by GPS and labelled by longitude and latitude as well as the altitude of
the plane.
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outside the financial framework of the project. Therefore a full coverage of
the coast line was achieved by a photo mission along the entire coastline by
plane. This dataset provided the KenSea project with an excellent tool for
documenting near coast features such as coastal morphologies, extent of
corals, mangroves and fishing sites.
Apart from creating the above mentioned new layers and re-using modified
versions of data from the EAF-14 database a very large effort was put into
harvesting all existing GIS layers with relevance to the project from other
data holding institutions or organizations
1.1.3 The Environmental Sensitivity Atlas
The Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for the Coastal Area of Kenya devel-
oped through the KenSea project contains three types of maps which have
been reproduced in 16 map sheets in scale 1: 50.000 to cover the whole
cost line. In addition, 4 map sheets in 1: 25.000 have been produced for
the Mombasa Creek Area.
The KenSea project contains the following three thematic maps:
An important tool in the response strategy is map sheets with reliable near
shore information as towns, major constructions and especially access roads
to the beach providing the possibility of bringing heavy equipment and
man power to the beach for clean-up operations, see details in chapter 5.1.
The Coastal Resource Maps represent all available data and are the basis for
the calculation of the environmental sensitivity index. The features are
grouped according to Coastal types, Biological resources and Human use,
see details in chapter 5.2.
In addition to their inherent value, and biological value based on biodiversi-
ty or production, some coast types are more important for human interests,
e.g. local small scale fishery, tourism, protection against coastal erosion,
than others. Prioritising is therefore of vital importance for a successful res-
ponse strategy. But, to be of any use to the oil spill responders, such infor-
mation has to be compiled, analyzed and published in a comprehensive
atlas before the spill happens.
After the development of the Coastal Resource Maps the data layers contai-
ning geographic information about these resources were used as the founda-
tion for the calculation of the environmental sensitivity index and the ren-
dering of the index values in a separate set of maps, see details in chapter
Logistics and
Topographic Maps
Coastal Resource Maps
Sensitivity Maps
Environmental Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya
1 - KenSea, Environ. Sensitivity Atlas for Coastal Area of Kenya