Lewis Wave Power has an Agreement for Lease (AfL) from The Crown Estate on a region of the seabed off the north-west coast of Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides in order to develop a wave farm using Aquamarine Power’s Oyster wave power technology. The latest generation device is the Oyster 800 which is in the process of being installed for performance assessment at the EMEC range, Billia Croo, Orkney. On satisfactory completion of the testing phase at Billia Croo, it is proposed to install up to 50 such wave devices off the Isle of Lewis. As part of the consenting process mandated by the regulatory authorities, it is necessary for the developer to produce an Environmental Impact Assessment including any specialist technical studies. As a consequence of this requirement, this report, prepared by Kongsberg Maritime Ltd for Aquamarine Power Ltd, provides an assessment of the impact of underwater sound on marine life found in the Lewis Wave Power development area. Subsequently acoustic modelling was undertaken using a suite of computer programs to investigate the underwater noise propagating along a set of transects radiating from the Lewis Wave Power Development area. The programs themselves are based on mature and rigorous scientific methodologies that have been reviewed extensively in the international literature over a number of years. It is considered of fundamental importance that acoustic modelling is not based on “in-house” solutions using non peer-reviewed techniques as this could compromise the developer in the event that the environmental impact assessment documents become subject to scrutiny.
2012, Konsberg, North West Lewis Wave Farm, Underwater Noise Impact Study