Tidal Lagoon Power has announced the formation of a Fisheries Peer Review Group to be chaired by Chris Mills, the former Director of Environment Agency Wales. Acting as independent advisors to Tidal Lagoon Power, the Fisheries Peer Review Group will provide additional support to Andy Schofield who has joined the business as Head of Fisheries. Andy worked for Natural Resources Wales and its predecessors for almost 30 years and held various fisheries, conservation, recreation and water quality management roles.
Members of the Fisheries Peer Review Group include; Steve Colclough, a fisheries scientist and Director at Colclough & Coates – SC2 Limited and Graeme Harris, also a fisheries scientist and former Chair of the statutory Fisheries, Ecology & Recreation Committee (FERAC) for Wales (2006 – 2013).
The aim of the Fisheries Peer Review Group is to advise Tidal Lagoon Power and the fisheries research contractors on the methodology being adopted for the prediction of effects and impacts on fish as part of broader environmental impact assessments relating to Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon and future lagoon developments.
Chris Mills explains: “I believe that Tidal Lagoon Power recognises the complexity of the environmental challenges associated with development in areas like the Severn Estuary, with its dynamic coastal and marine environment and network of overlaid designations from European Marine Sites to local nature reserves. “
“Peer review is an essential part of achieving high quality, independent and authoritative outputs, which are accepted by regulators and other key stakeholders including the public.”
Graham Hillier, Managing Director of Development Services for Tidal Lagoon Power adds: “I am delighted to welcome Andy to the team as Head of Fisheries. Building on existing knowledge and expertise, we continue to progress engineering-based feasibility studies to investigate which options could minimise environmental effects and maximise the tidal energy that can be harnessed through a series of lagoons, starting in Swansea, Cardiff and Newport.”
“The Fisheries Peer Review Group has therefore been created to provide us with expert, professional, independent validation of data requirements, survey objectives, survey methods, survey findings, modelling methods and parameters, model outputs, model interpretation and impact assessment.”