G1 - Fit-for-purpose approaches to environmental monitoring

G - Environmental And Ecosystem Aspects

Status - published
Last updated on: 12/11/2019

Challenges/Opportunities

ORE Industries have recognised that current environmental impact assessment EIA/HRA/Post-consent guidelines for environmental monitoring are not fit for purpose and may be costing more than necessary or not providing information needed with confidence.

Solution

Better framework for collection of data and an assessment approach for environmental impacts.

Context And Need

Need:

Environmental (EIA/HRA) data collection can be a significant CAPEX cost and post-consent data collection can be a significant OPEX cost.

Breakthrough:

An agreed standard framework is needed for collection of data and an assessment approach for environmental impacts, in particular, cumulative effect for all offshore industries. An agreed data sharing portal across offshore industries and regulators would be a necessary part of this framework.

Summary

Environmental monitoring is a high cost aspect of ORE project development and is needed during both environmental impact assessment and post consent. However, there is generally low confidence in the predictions of cumulative and population level environmental impacts. Better understanding of the models and the data needed for use in them will enable the development of a framework for monitoring data collection with environmental impact assessment and post consent guidelines.

Impact Potential

The development of approaches to environmental monitoring that are fit for purpose will potentially lower costs of CAPEX and OPEX in ORE significantly. There is an opportunity to create new UK expertise for data collection and data base standards, and for bespoke monitoring equipment that can be exported worldwide.

Research Status

Recognised by many researchers, developers (Royal HaskoningDHV) and regulators (MSS, MMO) that have been dealing with consent issues that changes are needed in policy for SEA, EIA/HRA and post-consent data collection, sharing of data products. The INSITE programme is helping to set up a roadmap to locations of data. However regulators are suggesting use of the existing national Marine Environmental Data and Information Network (MEDIN) database:

1) Industry Evidence Programme (IEP)

2) Review of environmental data associated with post-consent monitoring of licence conditions of offshore wind farms

3) INSITE Data RoadMap

4) MEDIN

Also Offshore Wind Innovation Hub - O&M and Windfarm Lifecycle innovation priorities

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We would also like to invite UK researchers and industry stakeholders within ORE to submit links to research projects, both past and present, for inclusion within the landscape.

Therefore, if you have a UK-based research project within an area of ORE that you feel is relevant to a specific research theme or challenge within the Research Landscape, click HERE to submit your research project to the research landscape

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