Socotra Master-plan Wins Consultancy Award [Archives:2002/03/Business & Economy]

January 14 2002

Karen Dabrowsky
WS Atkins a British-based environmental consultancy has been highly commended in the annual British Consultants Bureau (BCB) British Consultancy Firm of the Year Award 2001 for its work on the Socotra Archipelago Master Plan. The plan focuses on improving the standard of living for the islands residents while at the same time protecting its unique environment.
The Director of WS Atkins Environmental Consultancy, David Carr, said , We are delighted to have had our work on Socotra recognized by the British Consultants Bureau.
Socotra, which is off the coast of Yemen, is notable for the wealth of its endemic species of animals and plants, which make it of world class environmental importance. Planning development for the people of the island, who presently depend on the natural environment for their livelihoods, at the same time as protecting this unique environment proved to be a challenging task. I am pleased to say it is one to which the team responded extremely well, overcoming significant logistical problems in the process.
So although it is just one of many projects across the world, where we have delivered a fully integrated economic, social, physical and environmental solution, we are particularly pleased to have had our Socotra project recognized in this award.
The $1 million masterplan was commissioned by Yemens Environmental Protection Council and the Ministry of Planning and Development and financed by the European Union. Eighty projects which can be undertaken within a ten-year period have been proposed along with sixty-two small immediate impact ventures which can be carried out very quickly and with relatively little money. Proposals for a $20-40m plan to upgrade the islands roads, a must before the serious development of tourism can be contemplated, was also prepared.
All the parties involved hope that events in Afghanistan will stabilize and allow the implementation of Phase II sub projects to commence as soon as possible.
Finalists in the BCB 2001 consultants awards included Mott MacDonald (Dubai Aluminum Condor Project), Waterman International (Hotel Tbiisi, Georgia), Turner and Town send (First silicon water fabrication plant, Kuching, Malaysia) and BBC Technology (Launch of the first TV station in Botswana).0