Announcing the public release of the Hexicon Dounreay Tri Floating Wind Environmental Statement that we worked on earlier this year!

SMRU Consulting, contracted by HiDef, authored the marine mammal impact assessment chapter for the Hexicon Dounreay Tri Floating Wind Environmental Statement. This work involved a desktop review to investigate the abundance and distribution of marine mammals in the Project area. An impact assessment was then conducted, which outlined the potential impact pathways from the floating wind device such as: underwater noise, vessel disturbance and entanglement risk. No significant impacts to marine mammals were identified during the construction, operation and maintenance or decommissioning of this Project.

The application for a licence for the Hexicon Dounreay Tri Floating Wind development has now been submitted to the Scottish government. The full ES chapter can be viewed here.

This was an interesting project to be involved in given the novel technology being assessed. For traditional offshore wind farm developments, the potential risk of injury and/or disturbance to marine mammals during piling activities has been identified as a key risk, however, this impact pathway is not relevant to this floating wind project as drag anchors will be used to moor the structure. This means that, compared to traditional pile driven offshore wind turbines, the potential impacts to marine mammals during the construction phase are expected to be minimal.