Xodus awarded contract to investigate and improve noise impacts on marine life
Thursday, Jun 27, 2013
International energy consultancy Xodus Group will be lead consultant to review and make recommendations on the use of acoustic deterrent devices and the mitigation of potential underwater noise impacts arising from pile driving during offshore wind farm construction.
As part of a programme of work to be carried out through the Offshore Renewables Joint Industry Programme (ORJIP), and in collaboration with project partners SMRU Ltd, Xodus Group has been awarded the contract for Phase 1 of the ORJIP Project 4. The project aims to provide the offshore wind industry with evidence as to the cost and effectiveness of deterrent devices and provide recommendations as to what further work may be of benefit.
Xodus’ integrated knowledge and capabilities stretches from a deep understanding of offshore construction work, encompassing underwater acoustics and environmental impact assessment and mitigation planning and management. These skills, coupled with SMRU Ltd’s experience and understanding of marine mammal behaviour and noise abatement development creates a unique and integrated project team capable of assessing and understanding the problem and applying readily implementable recommendations.
To ensure the project balances the broad range of considerations, a formalised decision making process will be adopted, using Xodus Group’s value-based decision making tool (VDRM). This process will entail an initial workshop on the 26th June 2013, at which end users will identify and discuss the specific criteria for evaluating the current, and potential acoustic deterrent solutions.
This approach is designed to ensure that the study focuses immediately on the most important topics, and ensures that recommendations made as part of this study fully capture the needs of the target end users.
Alex Herschel, Principal Environmental Consultant with Xodus said: “Our in-depth experience of this sector enables us to fully appreciate the issues associated with the installation of piles offshore and the requisite marine mammal mitigation protocols; and more specifically, the inherent financial, schedule and health and safety risks posed during the implementation of the currently proposed mitigation measures.
“These risks can arguably only increase, not least due to the increasing size of the offshore wind farm projects, at increasing distances offshore, and with evolving consenting requirements.
Source: Xodus Group