The Scottish Wildlife Trust has now launched a new report in their Policy Futures series which calls for greater scrutiny of offshore energy developments, such as wind, wave and tidal stream devices located in nationally important areas for wildlife.
Aiming to raise awareness of the importance of the need for better planning for offshore marine renewable projects, the conservation charity’s new policy, Living Seas: towards sustainable marine renewable energy in Scotland, calls on the Scottish Government to exercise greater diligence when considering marine planning proposals.
Tony King, Scottish Wildlife Trust’s Head of Policy, said: “Ensuring we have healthy seas is a vital part of protecting Scotland’s natural environment, including some of our best-loved wildlife like dolphins, sea birds, seals and basking sharks. Seas also play a vital role in regulating our climate and supporting a fishing industry upon which whole communities depend.
“Marine renewable energy is undoubtedly a huge opportunity for Scotland and will help us achieve important carbon emissions reduction targets. But the roll out of renewables must be done carefully if we are to safeguard the fragile marine habitats on which so many of our iconic marine species depend. At the moment, the environmental impacts of proposed marine energy developments are simply not being considered in the way they should if we are to achieve a truly sustainable industry.
“Thanks to support from People’s Postcode Lottery, we are able to campaign to persuade industry and Government to improve the environmental sustainability of marine energy.”
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Notes to Editors
1. The Scottish Wildlife Trust is the largest voluntary body working for all the wildlife of Scotland, representing more than 35,000 members who care for wildlife and the environment. The Scottish Wildlife Trust seeks to raise public awareness of threatened habitats and species and manages over 120 reserves Scotland-wide.
2. The Scottish Wildlife Trust receives financial assistance and support from a range of organisations, funders and individuals including Scottish Natural Heritage and People’s Postcode Lottery.