Rufus Howard: a marine impact assessment group

13th June 2016

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Business & Industry ,
  • Built environment ,
  • Planning ,
  • Management


Douglas Swarbrick

A new drive to engage on marine impact assessment.

Historically, IEMA has not been strongly associated with the marine environment. However, many members are involved in marine impact assessment and management.

A good number work in organisations, such as The Crown Estate, the Marine Management Organisation (MMO), Natural England and Environment Agency, and in consultancies and industries providing services that operate in the coastal and marine environment. There is a need therefore to engage more with others operating in the seas around the UK and this is happening.

I recently presented on the need for evidence-based decision making in impact assessment for marine industries and renewables to representatives from Natural England and Defra’s joint nature conservation committee. The event was organised by the Seabed User and Development Group, which represents marine organisations, including trade bodies Oil & Gas UK, Renewable UK and the Carbon Capture & Storage Association. I also took part in the European Commission’s summit in May on strategic environmental assessment (SEA), presenting marine case studies, including one on the excellent work by Marine Scotland in marine spatial planning. Finally, I spoke with the delegates from the MMO at the IEMA proportionate assessment summit on the use of evidence plans.

It has long been my desire to create an IEMA working group on marine impact assessment to develop good practice and share knowledge on the latest developments – these include marine protected areas, marine conservation zone stage 2 assessments, biosecurity plans and changes to the EIA directive. As chair of the impact assessment network, I am issuing a call for members interested in a marine impact assessment group to get in touch – I already have volunteers from the MMO, The Crown Estate and Royal HaskoningDHV.

Please email [email protected] if you want to volunteer your time to help develop a community of practice on marine impact assessment.


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