Providing fisheries liaison services
Natural Power is a Stirling-based consultancy providing fisheries liaison services for Inch Cape Offshore Limited (ICOL), communicating with and providing information between the company and the fishing industry and vice versa from 2018 to present. During this time, it developed the scope of work for fisheries liaison, helping to define key roles and responsibilities for both the company and the representatives of the fishermen in the area. It drafted a board paper to secure approval from the board of ICOL and a proposed budget to carry out fisheries liaison and mitigation payments. Natural Power is also in the process of writing ICOL’s Fisheries Management and Mitigation Strategy (FMMS).
Liaison between offshore wind developers and the fishing community is a relatively recent requirement as more offshore wind is proposed, and begins construction, in UK waters. Natural Power has been working with the offshore wind industry for more than 20 years and has built positive and trusted relationships with many of the major stakeholders involved. It has developed a clear understanding of the needs of both developers and the local fishing communities and has helped to streamline the process and communication channels required to carry out surveys and construction activities in traditional fishing areas.
This has created a whole new area of growth offshore as ex-fishermen have assumed the roles of Offshore Fisheries Liaison Officers (OFLOs) and Fisheries Industry Representatives (FIRs) as well as employing fishing vessels to guard development sites and carry out surveys identifying fishing gear in the area. Natural Power has been instrumental in their development by providing induction documentation and training to increase their knowledge of offshore wind and the requirements of those developing new sites.
Peter Berney, Principal Environmental Consultant at Natural Power said:
“Natural Power looks forward to continuing to work proactively with both developers and the fishing communities to maximise benefits for all“