Photo: Morlais tidal energy zone (Courtesy of Nova Innovation)

Morlais tidal energy scheme in need of environmental contractors

Menter Môn, the manager of the Morlais tidal energy project, has launched two tenders related to the procurement of environmental monitoring services for the scheme.

Morlais tidal energy zone (Courtesy of Nova Innovation)
Morlais tidal energy zone (Courtesy of Nova Innovation)

The project, known as the Morlais Demonstration Zone, was designated for tidal energy development by the Crown Estate in 2013, with Menter Môn securing the lease to manage the zone a year later.

The company is now looking for the provision of collision and encounter risk modelling for marine mammal species, diving seabirds and fish in relation to tidal stream energy devices.

The deadline for applications to this tender has been set for March 21, 2022.

In addition, Menter Môn is seeking to procure a suitable qualified consultant to support it with the development of a detailed Environmental Monitoring and Mitigation Plan (EMPP) for the tidal stream industry.

The applications for the EMPP tender are due by March 15, 2022, Menter Môn noted.

To remind, Menter Môn hired marine planning and environmental consultancy MarineSpace back in November 2021 to lead the development of the project’s EMPP in line with the planning requirements.

The work will include – but may not be limited to – the support regarding marine mammals and ornithology, Menter Môn noted back then.

Also, the contract awarded to Marine Space – valued at little over £235,000 – was likely to be subcontracted, for providing consultants and project advisers to assist the delivery of the scope of work, it was stated in the contract award notice.

In December 2021, the Welsh Government gave its consent for the development of the Morlais tidal stream energy project as the first part of the consenting process, which enabled the start of construction for onshore elements in preparation for offshore activities.

Accordingly, Natural Resources Wales granted a marine license that will allow tidal turbines to be installed.

Located off the northwest coast of Holy Island, the consented area for the installation and commercial demonstration of multiple arrays of tidal energy devices will be suitable for a maximum installed capacity of 240MW.

Once fully operational, the Morlais scheme will be able to provide clean power for over 180,000 homes.