Client: Voith Hydro Wavegen Limited
Xodus was appointed EIA co-ordinator for Phase 2 of the Siadar Wave Energy Project on the island of Lewis, Scotland in 2012. The proposed 30 MW project (Phase 1 and Phase 2) comprised a breakwater approximately 1.5 km long (accommodating oscillating water column wave energy technology), a parallel access jetty, shore connection, control building and associated improvements to the local road network for access purposes.
The Phase 2 EIA and ES built upon the Phase 1 EIA previously undertaken by Xodus in 2007/2008. The Phase 1 project comprised a 250 m breakwater structure and a different location for the landfall and control building. It was important that the Phase 2 EIA considered Phase 2 of the project, since Phase 1 was already consented, whilst also presenting a holistic and integrated assessment for both Phase 1 and Phase 2 to provide consultees and the statutory authorities with a full picture of the whole development.
The project scope of work undertaken by Xodus included production of the scoping report; specialist EIA studies; Phase 1 terrestrial habitat survey; marine intertidal Phase 1 biotope mapping survey; consultation with the Regulator, statutory consultees and other stakeholders. The project was managed to strict NEC3 PSC contract requirements.
Twelve specialist studies were undertaken as part of the EIA including terrestrial, fish and benthic ecology; coastal processes; landscape, seascape and visual (SLVIA); transport and access; onshore and underwater noise; surface water and hydrology; and cultural heritage. Xodus subcontracted some studies to specialists including SLVIA, cultural heritage and subtidal biotope mapping surveys.
Key sensitivities raised by consultees which required addressing during the course of the project included ornithology and fish ecology interests, marine and terrestrial cultural heritage and onshore noise among others. Mitigation and monitoring commitments for the project were discussed and agreed with the client and were considered appropriate to the scale of the proposed development and the nature and scale of the potential impacts.
The £30 million project, was to be built by Wavegen and Phase 1 of the project received approval from the Scottish Government in January 2009. Originally, the project was to be developed in cooperation with npower Renewables. However, in August 2011, npower Renewables left the project and then subsequently in 2012 the project was cancelled.Scope
- EIA coordination and management of a whole project EIA requiring input from a number of specialist subcontractors
- Surveys, desk studies and impact assessments were carried out and managed as a combination of in-house and subcontracted studies
- Planning and management of field surveys and field works and compliance with health and safety and quality requirements
- Consultation with the Regulator, statutory consultees and other stakeholders
- Monthly progress meetings and reports and budget control to NECs PSC contract requirements
- Discharge of consent conditions (following consent of Phase 1) through development of environmental monitoring strategy, scoping of monitoring surveys and production of management plans
- In depth knowledge of the project and continuity of environmental advise between both project phases
- Extensive experience of undertaking marine renewable impact assessments for projects based in Scotland and in island locations benefited the project
- Considerable experience of producing environmental documentation to meet project and client specific requirements for marine renewable projects
- Experienced in undertaking consultation with stakeholders, regulators and statutory consultees in the marine renewable industry sector
- Maximised local content through use of local ecology and archaeological surveyors