HEL were involved with the Beauly Denny 400 kV Overhead Transmission Line project and have undertaken some of the largest ecological surveys ever undertaken in Scotland and the UK. This included a range of vegetation, bird, mammal, amphibian and freshwater pearl mussel surveys for the 220 km route of the new line, associated access tracks and substations, and 200 km of old line to be dismantled. In addition to standard survey methodologies we also developed novel methods, in particular studies to inform on avian collision modelling.
Baseline results were initially used to inform on strategic routeing to avoid sensitive areas and then to provide an Ecological Impact Assessment (EcIA) for inclusion in the project ES. As part of the planning application for the project, HEL provided a range of Habitats Regulations Appraisals in relation to Natura 2000 sites, including special studies for the Inner Moray Firth SPA, Drumochter Hills SPA/SAC, Ness Woods SAC, South Tayside Goose Roosts SPA and Firth of Forth SPA.
HEL’s in-house specialists worked with the SSE legal team in the preparation of precognitions for Public Inquiry. We also provided Expert Witness.
Following planning consent, HEL were commissioned to undertake pre-construction surveys, including re-surveys of protected mammals and birds for the entire route of both lines. During the construction period we provided specialist ecological services to the Ecological Clerk of Works to help ensure planning conditions were fulfilled and that the project remained legally compliant with nature conservation legislation. HEL’s current project involvement includes post construction monitoring of potential bird collisions with the new 400 kV line.
Heritage Environmental Ltd
24 High Street
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