Year 3: Environmental Monitoring Report

Published: 6 October 2020

Author: Ellie Cooper, RSK Environment 

This document summarises the environmental monitoring activity through year 3 of the EnFAIT project. It satisfies deliverable D8.6 of the EnFAIT project and will also be made available for public dissemination. Deliverable D8.51 provided the results from monitoring during the first year of the EnFAIT project and was also made available for public dissemination. The year 1 environmental monitoring report covered the key outcomes from vantage point surveys undertaken for the 12 months between May 2017 and April 2018 and a subset of the underwater video footage. At this point, comprehensive analyses of the full datasets had not been carried out, so a simple descriptive analysis of the 12 month subset of data was presented.

As the second in a series of three environmental monitoring reports required for the EnFAIT project, this report details the environmental monitoring activity carried out during years 2 and 3 of the project. Activity during this project phase has focussed on continuing data gathering under the long-running environmental monitoring programmes and carrying out comprehensive analyses of the long-running datasets gathered since 2010. These data and the analysis outputs, summarised in this report, provide a foundation on which further monitoring in years 4 and 5 of the EnFAIT project will be built, as understanding for the environmental effects of the Shetland Tidal Array increases and the questions posed by the monitoring are refined.

This report therefore also provides an overview of the scope and objectives for the ongoing monitoring programme through years 4 and 5 of the EnFAIT project, as the number of deployed turbines increases and device configuration within the array is altered.