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Ireland awards contract for strategic environmental assessment for new offshore renewable energy development plan
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Ireland awards contract for strategic environmental assessment for new offshore renewable energy development plan

ClearLead Consulting has won a contract for the creation of a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) and an Appropriate Assessment (AA) for Ireland’s new Offshore Renewable Energy Development Plan (OREDP II).

Following a tender that was launched earlier in the year by Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, (SEAI), the company was awarded this contract. The tender invited experienced planning and environmental consultants to submit proposals until October 1.

ClearLead Consulting will perform a Strategic Environmental Assessment of the OREDP II at an appropriate scale, screening for the Plans Apropriate Assessment, and, subject to the outcome of the screening a Appropriate Assessment of the OREDP II.

According to SEAI, the Strategic Environmental Assessment and the Appropriate Assessment of the OREDP II will help shape and develop the Plan and ensure that the sector can grow sustainably while minimizing any environmental impact.

The OREDP II will be used to identify and designate candidate areas for future offshore renewable power development under the Maritime Area Planning Bill (MAP Bill), which has passed through all stages of Oireachtas. It is expected that it will simplify the permitting process for offshore wind development.

The MAP Bill establishes a new marine planning system, which is underpinned by a statutory Marine Planning Policy Statement, guided by the National Marine Planning Framework, launched on 1 July. It replaces existing foreshore consenting. It creates a completely new State consent system for the entire maritime region, which integrates development consenting into our planning permission system.

The OREDP, as well as the MAP Bill, provide a framework for sustainable development of Ireland’s offshore renewable power projects.

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