Marine habitat recovery pilot test to start this autumn at Eneco Luchterduinen

Dutch nature environmental organisations Stichting de Noordzee and Natuur & Milieu are partnering up in a unique project, De Rijke Noordzee (Rich North Sea), to improve the underwater marine habitat at offshore wind farms and prove that offshore wind development and underwater nature recovery and improvement can go hand in hand.

Due to several reasons artificial reefs are on the brink of extinction in the North Sea. Artificial reefs are important for filtering water and providing shelter for underwater sea life. Offshore wind farms are ideal to function as sanctuaries. The foundations of the turbines offer a point of attachment for all sorts of sea life. Due to the fishing restrictions marine life can find shelter and thrive in the wind farm.

This autumn they will start a pilot project at the Eneco Luchterduinen offshore wind farm to study the best circumstances for underwater marine habitat recovery and stimulation. Other partners in the pilot project are ASN Bank, Eneco and Van Oord. Part of the demonstration is the placement of artificial reefs and introduction of adult oysters. The larvae of the oysters will in turn attract other species such as crabs, fish and seals. Van Oord will use one of their installation vessels to install the artificial reefs. These measures should stimulate

Bureau Waardenburg, Sas consultancy and Wageningen Marine research will monitor, using, amongst others, underwater cameras, and study the development of nature at the site. The results will be processed in a blue print to be used at future offshore wind farms. Source: Stichting de Noordzee



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