The REA welcomes Defra’s announcement last Thursday of the creation of 27 new Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs).
Developers now await the detailed rules for each MCZ, as well as decisions on approximately 100 remaining sites over the next two designation phases in 2015 and 2016. These phases may also consider new site proposals.
REA Head of Marine Renewables Dr Steph Merry said:
“We support the Government’s efforts to preserve the marine environment 100%. Environmental protection is built into the DNA of the renewables industry. Our wave and tidal members are committed to minimising the environmental disruption of their projects and maximising the environmental benefit. We welcome the progress made to date, but two levels of uncertainty remain.
“First, although we now know the boundaries of the new MCZs, we don’t know the specific conditions which apply to each MCZ. This uncertainty will inhibit development. We hope Defra will move quickly to publish clear management measures so developers know precisely how their work will be affected in each MCZ.
“Second, there remains a lingering uncertainty over the remaining sites and the possibility of new site proposals. We hope the MCZ programme will stay the course, complete on time and restore certainty to developers.”
The REA will be examining the new MCZ designations and discussing measures to advance the UK’s world-leading marine energy sector at the Seabed User and Developer Group’s Parliamentary Reception this Thursday. Members of the media wishing to attend are invited to RSVP to Leah Ashcroft by 5pm on Tuesday 26th November.
Press Release, November 25, 2013