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Spatial assessment of benthic compensatory habitats for offshore wind farm impacts (NECR443)

Large-scale offshore wind farm (OWF) developments have the potential to interact with benthic species and habitats of conservation importance. The expansion of offshore wind in English waters will increase the cumulative risk of adverse effects on the integrity of protected sites and species populations in the UK. It may also not be possible to avoid or mitigate against adverse effects on designated sites. Under these circumstances, the provision of compensatory measures will be required, where a project is consented in the knowledge that the overall coherence of the Marine Protected Area (MPA) network is maintained. This project aims to identify benthic habitats that, whilst not classified as the same, have a similar or identical ecological function and ecosystem service provision to one another. Should it not be possible to rule out an adverse effect on one designated site/feature, it may be possible to consider habitats identified as similar for the delivery of compensatory measures. This work is intended to aid Natural England in providing advice to developers and regulatory authorities on potential compensation measures for benthic habitats; noting that specific measures would need to be developed on a case-by-case basis.

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NECR443 Edition 1 Spatial assessment of benthic compensatory habitats for offshore wind farm impacts, PDF, 1.3 MB 2022/10/05
NECR443 Appendix C Habitat Assessment Workbook_v1.1, XLSX, 77.0 kB 2022/10/05
NECR433 Appendix H Cluster II High Energy Infralittoral Rock, PDF, 15.0 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix I Cluster III Peat Clay and Littoral Chalk, PDF, 13.8 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix J FOCI Littoral Chalk, PDF, 4.3 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix K FOCI Peat Clay, PDF, 4.2 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix L Cluster V Biogenic Annelid Reef, PDF, 6.4 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix M Cluster VI Littoral Rock Low Mod, PDF, 13.0 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix N Cluster VII Biogenic Bivalve Reef, PDF, 8.6 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix O Cluster IX Sublittoral Macrophyte Sediment, PDF, 6.5 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix P Cluster XI Circalittoral Rock, PDF, 16.8 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix Q FOCI Subtidal Chalk, PDF, 4.3 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix R Cluster XII Infralittoral Rock Low Mod, PDF, 15.0 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix S Cluster XIII Sublittoral Mud, PDF, 6.8 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix T Cluster XIV Sublittoral Coarse Sediment, PDF, 14.5 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix U Cluster XV Sublittoral Sand, PDF, 13.9 MB 2022/10/03
NECR433 Appendix V Cluster XVI Sublittoral Mixed Sediments, PDF, 9.0 MB 2022/10/03

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