The Consenting Process
Menter Môn will apply to Welsh Government under the Transport and Works Act for consent to develop and operate the Morlais demonstration zone. Menter Môn will also apply to Natural Resources Wales Marine Licensing Team for a marine licence under the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009. Both processes will run in parallel with each other.
Environmental Impact Assessment
An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is being prepared, based on a scope of work agreed with National Resources Wales and Welsh Government and informed by statutory consultees. Independent experts have been commissioned to conduct detailed studies to understand the potential impacts of the project during construction, operation and decommissioning stages. The studies include:
- Marine sediment and water quality.
- Natural heritage, benthic ecology, marine mammals, fish and shellfish, ornithology, terrestrial and coastal ecology.
- Seascape and landscape.
- Shipping and navigation.
- Archaeology and cultural heritage.
- Tourism and recreation.
Consultation is an important element of this process, with statutory consultees on key technical issues as well as with the community and other interested groups.
Early engagement aims to make sure that concerns are raised early, and where possible, addressed before the applications are submitted.
An ‘Environmental Statement’ (ES) will be submitted with the applications. This report will set out conclusions on predicted environmental effects and will set out the proposed mitigation measures that may be required if impacts cannot be avoided.
Stage 1 – Consenting
This stage aims to ensure consent for the development Morlais project.
Stage 2 – Implementation
We hope to get a consent decision for Morlais in the second half of 2020. Following this and subject to securing the consent, the focus will then be on what is needed to implement the development. This includes looking at what needs to be done before the work starts, for example getting approval for construction methods and environmental management and monitoring.
Construction will happen in phases. It is expected that the work on land will take place between 2021 and 2022, with work offshore to start in 2023. This will enable developers of tidal energy convertors to deploy their devices in the sea and operate them to generate electricity.