The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales has been engaged with these proposals throughout the planning process.Our biggest concerns were dealt with, in particular by changing the type of turbine to significantly reduce the intertidal habitat loss predicted. However, this is a test case for a new type of development, in which there is still uncertainty as to some of the impacts, since much of the impact assessment work was based on modelling.
Therefore we want to see the proposed mitigation strictly adhered to, and we believe that monitoring should be carried out over a number of years before any other lagoons are built, so that lessons can be learnt.
Swansea is a far smaller development than other tidal lagoons proposed in the Severn Estuary, which is a more sensitive area covered by a variety of European conservation designations. Therefore any impacts are likely to be on a far greater scale.
We still have strong concerns about where the rock to build the lagoon walls will come from. For example, Dean Quarry in Cornwall is in the Manacles MCZ where plans for a new breakwater and jetties could result in significant damage to the designated habitat features as well as impacts on marine mammals.