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Effects of Marine Renewable Energy Developments on Seabirds

A new paper has been published in Marine Policy by Helen Wade, EA Masden, AC Jackson and Prof. Robert Furness, considering the uncertainty in data regarding effects of marine renewable energy developments (MREDs), and those of vessels and helicopters, on seabirds.

The indices considered in this publication present important information for the application of vulnerability indices ranking seabird vulnerability to MREDs. Uncertainty measures can inform MRED impact assessment processes by identifying species of potential concern that lack data, and contribute to identifying post-consent monitoring and strategic research priorities. The combined uncertainty and vulnerability indices could be employed to complement MRED site characterisation and inform sectoral plans by identifying areas supporting species that may be sensitive to MREDs. Given the evolving understanding of species’ responses to MREDs, these indices should be viewed as a work in progress and would benefit from regular consolidation with new information.