A new set of guidance has gone out for consultation on the topic of modelling the collision risk between marine animals and tidal turbines.
Collision risk assessments are included as part of the EIA and HRA process for tidal turbine projects. How marine mammals react to tidal turbines is still very much an unknown, and a lot of research is currently being conducted to investigate this. Marine mammals could respond either by showing avoidance or attraction behaviour – which obviously greatly impacts how likely they are to collide with turbines and such data is needed to inform collision risk modelling.
We have had a lot of experience in this sector assisting a number of clients, including Minesto AB (Deep Green tidal kite), Tidal Energy Ltd (Delta Stream tidal turbine) and Marine Current Turbines (SeaGen tidal turbine). We were also commissioned by SNH to provide guidance for surveying and monitoring marine mammals around marine renewables in Scotland (see links below). Our involvement in these areas includes developing collision risk models, and developing novel approaches for using active sonar to detect and track marine mammals at the SeaGen tidal turbine in Strangford Lough and developing technologies for fine scale detection and tracking of marine mammals at tidal sites.
Check out some of the reports and projects conducted by SMRU Consulting on Guidance at Marine Renewables and Collision Risk Modelling:
- Tracking Technologies for Quantifying Marine Mammal Interactions with Tidal Turbines: Pitfalls and Possibilities.
- Wave and Tidal consenting Position paper Series: Marine Mammal Impacts.
- Tracking marine mammals around marine renewable energy devices using active sonar.
- Guidance on survey and monitoring in relation to marine renewables deployments in Scotland. Volume 2. Cetaceans and Basking Sharks.
- Guidance on survey and monitoring in relation to marine renewables deployments in Scotland. Volume 3. Seals.