Publication - Progress report

Draft Sectoral Marine Plans for Offshore Renewable Energy in Scottish Waters: Socio - Economic Assesment

Published: 25 Jul 2013
Part of:
Marine and fisheries
ISBN:
9781782567509

The study reported here provides a high level socio-economic appraisal of the potential costs and benefits to activities that may arise as a result of offshore wind, wave or tidal development within the Draft Plan Options as part of possible future Scotti

383 page PDF

4.7 MB

383 page PDF

4.7 MB

Contents
Draft Sectoral Marine Plans for Offshore Renewable Energy in Scottish Waters: Socio - Economic Assesment
B11. Recreational Boating

383 page PDF

4.7 MB

B11. Recreational Boating

B11.1 Overview

For the purpose of this study, recreational boating is considered to include recreational activities undertaken in medium and large sailing vessels, yachts, powerboats and motorboats. Information on smaller sailing boat activity such as dinghies (usually taken out of the water after use) and other types of water sports is provided in Section B15. There are clear socio-economic interactions between General Tourism and Recreational Boating. Tourism is described separately in section B13 of this report as the interactions and issues in relation to marine renewable developments are often distinctly different to those associated with recreational boating. There is some possibility of a degree of double counting using this approach but not to the extent that it materially affects the results of the study. Figure B11 shows an overview of recreational boating activity in relation to the Draft Plan Option areas. Information sources used in the assessment are listed in Table B11.1.

Table B11.1 Information Sources

Scale

Information Available

Date

Source

Scotland

Statistics on sailing tourism

No date

Tourism Resources Company et al (2010)

All Regions

Number of resident home berths

Number of visiting berths

Proportion of total Scotland berths

Demand for home berths (occupancy)

Visiting craft demand for berths

Average annual spend per boat (high, medium and low)

Direct expenditure

Multipliers (from Scottish Tourism Multiplier Study)

Visiting boat nights

Visiting boat expenditure

Employment

Gross Value Added

No date

Tourism Resources Company et al (2010)

Scotland

Sailing area value and berth numbers

No date

Baxter et al (2011)

Scotland

RYA cruising routes and sailing areas

No date

Baxter et al (2011)

Scotland

General Bathymetric Chart of the Ocean ( GEBCO) data set

No date

Whilst this assessment uses a representative set of data to evaluate the socio-economic consequences from individual Draft Plan Option areas, it should be noted that any marine renewable site development would be subject to individual assessment which includes evaluation of navigational patterns and potential risk. The majority of the developments' navigational risk assessments would also be underpinned by a marine traffic survey relevant to the baseline marine traffic use. The assessment presented in this Chapter provides a high level socio-economic appraisal based on a number of nationally applicable assumptions.

B11.2 Future Trends

UKMMAS (2010) reports that whilst marine recreation has experienced recent growth, future growth and stability of the sector is dependant upon the general health of the UK economy. A strong economy results in consumers having more disposable income to spend on leisure and recreation activities. As a result of the recent global economic downturn, there has been some short-term decline in participation in recreational activities within the UK. However, with infrastructure and technology in place to support the sector, it is expected to continue to grow over the long term and the prospects for growth in Scotland are good.

Scotland's Marine Atlas (Baxter et al., 2011) comments that despite the recent downturn in the global economy, and subsequent reduction in disposable incomes, the recreational sector could have the potential to play an increasingly significant role in Scotland's rural economy. This is evidenced by the recent development of marina facilities at Wick, and the Orkney Islands. Combined with active marketing by marina owners, and support from local authorities (such as Orkney Island's Council as seen in recent developments) the potential for future growth is apparent.

Climate change may also play a small part in increasing overall participation numbers. As the frequency of months when conditions are more comfortable for tourism in North-West Europe ( MCCIP, 2008) improve, the warmer weather is more likely to attract visitors to coastal locations in Scotland. The net result will be an extension of the tourist season beyond its traditional limits and opening up new destinations. Climate change as a positive influencing factor must be balanced against predictions of increased storminess, and the severity of storms. Provided increased storminess is predominantly in the winter months, this may not be a factor in future recreational boating trends.

The Scottish Enterprise (2010) report concludes that as long as infrastructure (marinas and shore side facilities) continue to attract investment, resident berthing could increase by 3-5% per annum. The growth potential in visitor berthing is projected at up to 5% per annum. Both of these projects bring an associated increase in expenditure into the local economy.

Planned and possible future offshore renewables development over the assessment period could interact with recreational boating activity. Such development may constrain recreational boating within the vicinity of arrays and increase sailing distances on some cruising and sailing routes. Concentration of developments along the East and West coasts of Scotland may increase the challenges of sailing along these routes with the potential to deter sailors.

B11.3 Potential for Interaction

Table B11.2 shows potential interaction pathways between recreational boating and wind, wave and/or tidal arrays.

Explanation of column content:

Column 1: Describes the potential interaction between the activity and any renewable technology;

Column 2: Identifies the types of offshore renewable development (wind, wave or tidal) for which the interaction may arise;

Column 3: Identifies the potential socio-economic consequence associated with the interaction identified in Column 1;

Column 4: Indicates whether detailed assessment will or will not be required if activity is scoped in;

Column 5: Identifies how the socio-economic impact will be assessed.

Table B11.2 Potential for Interaction

1

2

3

4

5

Potential Interaction

Technology Relevance (Wind, Wave, Tidal)

Potential Socio-economic Consequence

Requires Detailed Assessment ( ) or Does Not Require Detailed Assessment (X)

How the Economic Impact Will be Assessed

Alterations to informal cruising routes

All arrays

Increased fuel costs for motorised vessels; possible relocation of vessels leading to loss of revenues for supply chain

Assess potential additional fuel costs based on increased route distances

Deterrent to investment in marinas/supply chain

All arrays

Reduced investment

The risk of deterring investment in marina capacity or the wider supply chain is very difficult to quantify. Consultation with the recreational boating sector, particularly local marinas, should be undertaken to identify and address potential concerns relating to individual projects.

B11.4 Scoping Methodology

B11.4.1 Impacts to Cruising Routes

Wind, wave and tidal arrays plus their associated cable corridors may cause obstruction and displacement of cruising routes, leading to increased transit time and therefore increased cost. This will occur where cruising routes and Draft Plan Option areas and/or cable corridors spatially overlap. Cable corridors affect recreational boating during the process of laying cables with temporary increases in collision risk and/or a requirement to avoid areas of work to reduce the risk of marine incidents.

As a base assumption, where density of development is less than 5% of the Draft Plan Option area, then it is concluded that avoidance of significant impacts can be achieved through spatial planning. As such, the following scoping methodology was applied for proposed wind, wave and tidal Draft Plan Option areas plus their associated cable corridors.

Offshore Wind:

  • Where Draft Plan Option areas are transected by a heavy or medium use cruising route(s), the area has been scoped in;
  • If the spatial extent of indicative arrays for a given scenario occupy less than 5% of Draft Plan Option area it has been assumed that spatial planning of the Draft Plan Option areas can be used to avoid significant impacts under this scenario and the area has been scoped out; and
  • Where spatial overlap of RYA Sailing or Racing areas occurs but this is less than 10% of combined area (Draft Plan Option areas plus sailing/racing area) it has been assumed that spatial planning of the Draft Plan Option areas can be used to avoid significant impacts under all scenarios and the area has been scoped out.

Wave:

  • Where Draft Plan Option areas are transected by heavy or medium use cruising route(s), the area has been scoped in; and
  • Where Draft Plan Option areas are transected by heavy or medium use cruising route(s), and the spatial extent of indicative arrays for a given scenario occupy less than 1% of the Draft Plan Option area, it has been assumed that spatial planning of the Draft Plan Option areas can be used to avoid significant impacts under these scenarios.

Tidal:

  • Where Draft Plan Option areas are transected by heavy or medium use cruising route(s), the area has been scoped in;
  • Where Draft Plan Option areas are in waters of depths greater than 75m, the area has been scoped out. This follows the rationale that tidal devices are stationed circa 20m from the bed (to avoid bed turbulence) and have a maximum blade around 10m in diameter, providing a 30m bed to blade tip clearance. The largest keeled yachts are circa 10m draught. To provide allowance for tide and wave activity plus an extra margin for safety, 40m is considered a suitable threshold depth; and
  • Where Draft Plan Option areas are transected by heavy or medium use cruising route(s), and the spatial extent of indicative arrays for a given scenario occupy less than 5% of the Draft Plan Option area, it has been assumed that spatial planning of the Draft Plan Option areas can be used to avoid significant impacts under these scenarios and the area has been scoped out.

The detailed output of this scoping exercise is presented in Appendix C11.

B11.4.2 Deterrent to Investment

The location of the renewable developments in proximity to marinas or associated access routes may adversely affect marina developments, or the potential for investors to upgrade/expand existing marinas. This would be largest with developments which form a direct blockage to the main access routes to the marinas and nearby anchorages, or dissuade potential recreational boat owners from visiting certain locations due to the perceived increase in navigational difficulty.

B11.4.3 Data limitations

The published information on cruising and sailing routes is indicative and there is a lack of reliable data on the actual routes taken by recreational vessels. There is also a lack of information on vessel numbers passing along particular routes. There is limited information on historical trends in activity and the level of future activity is uncertain, as it is largely dependent on the overall performance of the national economy.

B11.5 Assessment Methodology

The assessment methodology presented in this section also takes account of stakeholder concerns regarding the interaction of renewal energy (wind, wave and tidal) on the Recreational Boating sector. Where individual stakeholders have raised specific concerns these have been included and highlighted.

B11.5.1 Impacts to Cruising Routes

The scoping study carries out an initial review of the potential interaction with cruising routes at the scale of the Draft Plan Option areas, where the Draft Plan Option areas which intersected cruising routes of medium or heavy use were scoped in for assessment.

The RYA heavy use cruising routes are defined as those where six or more recreational craft use the route during summer/daylight hours. RYA moderate use cruising routes are defined as those that recreational craft are seen at most times during summer daylight hours. RYA light use cruising routes are known to be commonly used, but are not supported by observational data ( RYA, 2008).

Routes which were identified to have an overlap with Draft Plan Option areas, but scoped out with respect to the density of development and seabed depth in the case of tidal developments, were not assessed. This assessment then goes further to evaluate in more detail the potential impact, based on theoretical development scenarios within the Draft Plan Option areas. The development scenarios within the Draft Plan Option areas are based on the low, central and high estimates of the proportion of the Draft Plan Option areas to be developed, which varies for each renewable energy type. A subjective assessment of where the development scenarios would occur was completed for the Commercial Shipping assessment (see Section B5.4) with the resulting development locations carried forward to this assessment for consistency. Within the Commercial Shipping assessment, developments within the Draft Plan Option areas were positioned based on the density of sea area usage (as informed by AIS density grids). The development scenarios were theoretically positioned in locations that were away from the busiest shipping traffic and established ferry routes based on available AIS information.

For the Draft Plan Option areas scoped in, cruising routes that intersected the development scenarios were identified and potential deviation estimated, along with the potential cost of the additional transit distance. Deviations have been calculated based on the difference between the 'current' cruising route through the development scenario and modified transit (route) around the development boundary. Where more than one cruising route intersects the development scenario, the sum of deviations estimated for each route has been used. The cost associated with the additional transit distance was calculated in relation to the fuel used. The following equation is applied:

Difference between the current route (distance in nautical miles) compared to additional transit distance (nautical miles) x marine fuel costs per nautical mile.

Fuel type used in the assessment assume red diesel, where the average unit pence per litre (ppl) for 2012 of 71.46 ppl has been used ( AHDB, 2013). The use of this fuel for propulsion carries with it an additional duty of 11.14 ppl based on HMRC rates from 2012. The estimated difference in distance and associated fuel consumptions has been costed for propulsion only, with no use for domestic fuel estimation. The mileage per litre for vessels under motor depends on the size and speed of the vessel in question, ranging from about 13-63 litres/hour. For the purposes of this assessment, fuel usage for a 'generic' averaged sized boat at a consumption rate of 40 litres per hour travelling at a speed of 20 knots has been used. In the assessment, all vessels are assumed to be under power ( i.e., sailing boats are not assessed whilst 'sailing').

The additional transit distance, and therefore fuel cost for each journey has then been scaled up to be representative of the total number of potential transits in one year. No detailed information on the number of vessels passing along cruising routes is available to inform the assessment. Hence, for the purposes of this assessment, it has only been possible to calculate the additional fuel costs for an arbitrary number of vessels which may deviate around the development area based on the RYA guidance of Heavy, Medium and Light route use. To provide a measure of Medium route use, a value of five vessels per day has been taken as a representation of peak Medium cruising routes.

The results of this assessment are presented in Section C11.2, where the described methodology was applied.

B11.5.2 Increase in Marine Risk

Radar interference from offshore wind installations is a known factor with respect to marine safety. This increase in marine risk has been assessed qualitatively with comments regarding possible mitigation measures. Mitigation cost would be transferred to the developer and hence no quantitative assessment of this cost has been undertaken. However, relevant stakeholders were consulted to ascertain whether there were any issues or concerns about any of the Draft Plan Option areas, and the scale of any potential issues.

There is also a temporary increase in marine risk along cable corridors whilst cabling is laid. Developers are responsible for ensuring appropriate Navigational Risk Assessments are provided for their marine works, and therefore no quantitative assessment of this cost has been undertaken.

B11.5.3 Deterrent to Investment in Marinas/Supply Chain

Changes to cruising routes could adversely affect marina developments, or the potential for investors to upgrade/expand existing marinas. The risk of deterring investment in marina capacity or the wider supply chain is very difficult to quantify. A qualitative assessment of the potential future investments into Scottish marinas, and in particular berth developments, has been undertaken using literature searches and consultation with the marina sector.

In addition to the above assessment, consultation with the recreational boating sector and sector trade organisations has been undertaken to identify specific concerns. The outcome of which is also presented in Section C11.2.


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