#SaveSouthannanSands News & Articles – Quick links to ‘SAY NO WAY WITHOUT AN EIA’ Campaign Updates

11th March 2020 The Decision Has Been Made! An Environmental Impact Assessment WILL Be Required Before Hunterston Decommissioning Works Can Commence

We are absolutely delighted to be able to announce that Marine Scotland & the Scottish Ministers have decided that Peel Ports’ plans for massive dredging and construction works at Hunterston to bring oil-rigs for decommissioning to Hunterston WILL REQUIRE an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) . Read the EIA Screening Opinion on the Marine Scotland Planning Portal>>>

8th March 2020 Peel Ports Publish Results of Hunterston PARC 2019 Public Consultation

Peel Ports have published their report of the results of the Public Consultation on the development of Hunterston PARC  held during May/June2019. Click here to read the Hunterston PARC Executive Summary >>>

1st Feb 2020 Donald Trump’s Golf Course & Peel Ports Hunterston Show SSSI Status Doesn’t Provide Gold Standard Environmental Protection

In the Scottish Wetlands Debate on 15th January 2020 MSP Ross Greer highlights  proposals at Hunterston along with Donald Trump’s golf course at Menie as evidence that SSSI doesn’t necessarily provide gold standard of protection:

1st Feb 2020 Questions Asked About Impact of Dredging on Radioactive Isotopes Trapped in Sediment Surrounding Hunterston Nuclear Power Station

The issue of nuclear safety at Hunterston is of considerable interest to the local and wider community. On the 5th September 2019 a representative of the Friends of Firth of Clyde attended the Hunterston Site Stakeholder Group (SSG)to ask the questions: (i) What is the level of radioactivity within the sediment at Hunterston and what implications might significant dredging in the area have on its release into the marine environment? (ii) What is the planning / licensing relationship between Hunterston Nuclear Site & Hunterston PARC? (iii) What liaison /communication had taken place between the Nuclear Licensing Division of SEPA and the SEPA Waste Management Division that was consulted by Marine Scotland regarding the EIA Screening?

18th January 2020 Freedom of Information Request Reveal Peel Ports Has a Direct Line to Minister Responsible for Issuing Decision on EIA For Southannan Sands SSSI

This item shows that delays to decision on EIA screening opinion from have not been taken well by Peel Ports. FOI request submitted by FOFOC reveals an email from Envirocentre (Peel Ports representatives) to Marine Scotland stating that they “intend to take up the matter with the minster”.  We argue that this email raises significant questions of transparency about the nature of influence of relationships between ministers and large-scale developers and industrialists such as Peel Ports wishing to pursue complex developments in highly environmentally sensitive areas and specifically in the case of Southannan Sands SSSI at Hunterston.

November 2019 ‘The Devil Is In The Detail’ – Marine Scotland Must Clearly Define ‘The Project 

Provides context and details of FOFOC letter sent to Marine Scotland outlining a key outstanding issue regarding the exact definition of ‘The Project’ and the way in which ‘salami slicing‘ of the planning and licensing applications into smaller discrete elements avoids full scrutiny of the overall cumulative impact of Peel Ports’ decommissioning plans.

22nd September 2019 Plans to Remove Second ‘Giant’ Wind Turbine from Hunterston Construction Yard by Controlled Explosion

Local community shocked and surprised to learn that the ‘giant’ 177m test wind turbine that remains on Hunterston construction yard is to be felled by explosives.

2nd September 2019 SEPA Grants Permission For Peel Ports To Process 250,000 Tonnes Of Unspecified Oil Rig Waste At Hunterston Without An Environmental Impact Assessment

Friends of the Firth of Clyde (FoFoC) reveal that a Waste Management Licence (WML) was granted to Clydeport Operations Ltd (AKA Peel Ports) by Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA). The nature of the license raises serious concerns about the capability and capacity of SEPA to oversee and enforce the highest environmental standards required to ensure the protection of the communities and intertidal waters surrounding Southannan Sands SSSI.Green Environment

28th August 2019 Green Party Environmental Spokesperson backs EIA campaign

Following a FOFOC public meeting on at Largs Academy, supporters send over 3000 individually signed “NO WAY WITHOUT AN EIA” postcards to Graham Black at Marine Scotland and the online petition moves towards 5000 signatures. Mark Ruskell MSP, Environment Spokesperson for the Scottish Greens joins North Ayrshire’s Green MSP Ross Greer in supporting FOFOC calls for an EIA  to take place before dredging and construction work for a decommissioning facility can be licensed by Marine Scotland.

9th August 2019 Support for #SaveSouthannanSands Campaign Grows: 100 attend public meeting at Largs Academy, 8th August 2019

Over one hundred people attend our public meeting update meeting about Peel Ports oil rig decom proposals organised by Independent Councillor Ian Murdoch and supported by Green Party MSP Ross Greer.

2nd August 2019 “SAY NO WAY WITHOUT AN EIA”- A Quick Guide to Southannan Sands SSSI & the Peel Ports Decom Proposal

To support our “SAY NO WAY WITHOUT AN EIA” public postcard signing FOFOC produced this briefing paper to provide an at a glance guide as to why it should be expected that an EIA is required before any decom plans are progressed.

27th July 2019 #SaveSouthannanSands Needs Your Support Now! Send a letter to Marine Scotland today to tell them “SAY NO WAY WITHOUT AN EIA”

Launch of the FOFOC #SaveSouthannanSands campaign. We call on everyone concerned about protection of the Southannan Sands SSSI to email Marine Scotland and sign one of our postcards to tell them “SAY NO WAY WITHOUT AN EIA”.

26th July 2019 “NO WAY WITHOUT AN EIA!” – FoFoC Write to Marine Scotland Calling For An Environmental Impact Assessment of Hunterston Plan

Following the shocking FOI revelations about Peel Ports revised plans for massive dredging of Southannan Sands SSSI, FOFOC discover that Peel Ports have submitted a request for a new EIA Screening Opinion to Marine Scotland (MS). Following consultation with our QC we writte to Marine Scotland calling for them to exercise their powers to require an EIA before any dredging or construction consents are granted.

6th July 2019 Outrage At Freedom Of Information Request Revelation That Peel Ports Intended To Dredge 2,400,000m3 Of Sand Adjacent To Southannan Sands SSSI

The FOFOC  discover through FOI that Peel Ports submitted a marine license application to Marine Scotland (MS) to dredge from the area of Southannan Sands Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) that included dredging TWELVE TIMES the volume of sand that was declared by them in the Public Pre-Application Consultation (PAC) Event on 8th August 2018.

5th July 2019 The Scottish Planning & Regulatory Authorities Must Step Up To Protect Southannan Sands SSSI & The Communities That Surround Hunterston PARC

Following Peel Ports’ public consultation on their ’20 Year Master Plan’ FOFOC write to all the Scottish planning, regulatory and licensing authorities, along with local and national elected representatives, to tell them that we hold them responsible for the protection of Southannan Sands Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and the health and wellbeing of surrounding communities that will live the wider consequences of the development of Hunterston PARC for generations to come.

30th June 2019 Friends of the Firth of Clyde Formal Response To Peel Ports’ 20 Year Master Plan

On 28th June 2019 Peel Ports concluded the 6 week public consultation on their ’20 Year Master Plan’ for Hunterston PARC. Read FOFOC response in full.

15th June 2019 Friends of the Firth of Clyde Objections to North Ayrshire Council Adopting Peel Ports 20 Year Master Plan

North Ayrshire Council (NAC) Planning Committee met to ratify their response to Peel Ports ’20 year Master Plan’ Consultation on Weds 19th June 2019. FOFOC had very serious concerns about the weakness of NAC’s proposed response. Given the scale and influence of Peel Ports as part of the multi billion£ company Peel Group, we raise the fundamental question of how will NAC ensure that the safety and wellbeing of the local community and the natural environment are protected. Prior to NAC’s planning meeting to ratify their response we wrote to to our elected counsellors and NAC officials every day over the course of a week to raise their awareness and stress our serious objections to Peel Ports Master Plan being adopted and the weakness of North Ayrshire’s response. You can read our emails here.

6th June 2019 Hunterston PARC Development Proposals – Master Plan or Disaster Plan

We have been canvassing opinion about the way the consultation has been conducted and many people have fed back to us that Peel Ports’ online survey doesn’t allow enough opportunity for comments. Because we felt it was really important that the views of the community were fully captured we put together our own survey. We gathered over 100 responses that were included in our response to Peel Ports.

24th May 2019 Friends of the Firth Of Clyde Thoughts on Peel Ports’ ‘20-Year Vision’ for Hunterston PARC Public Consultation

Peel Ports release their 20-Year Vision for the development of Hunterston PARC and a 6 week public consultation period commencing on 16 May 2019 with a deadline of Friday 28 June 2019 for submission of comments

Report on Clyde Regional Marine Plan Public Consultation Meeting – Largs 11/05/19

13th May 2019 The Friends of the Firth of Clyde attended the Clyde Marine Planning Partnership (CMPP) public consultation about the Clyde Regional Marine Plan in Largs on 11th May 2019.

The  team hosted an informative meeting that described the role of CMPP, including membership and governance of it’s Board; followed by an overview of the Clyde Regional Marine Plan and a lengthy question and answer session.

6th May 2019 Read the questions the FoFoC have submitted to the Clyde Marine Planning Partnership in advance of the Clyde Regional Marine Plan Public Consultation Event on 11th May 2019

Outline of the questions that FoFoC submit to the Clyde Marine Planning Partnership in advance of the ‘Clyde Regional Marine Plan’ Public Consultation Event in Largs on 11th May 2019, 6-9pm

6th July 2019 Scottish Natural Heritage advised it would be sensible to require an Environmental Impact Assessment of Peel Ports plans for oil rig decommissioning at Hunterston PARC before planning permission was granted

The FOFOC submitted a request for information to Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) under the  Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (‘the  EIRs’). The written response we received was unequivocal in indicating that SNH  advised an EIA was required.

3rd May 2019 Important Announcement – Dates of 2 Important Public Consultation Events for Peel Ports 20-Year Plan for Hunterston PARC & the Clyde Regional Marine Plan

May was a very busy time with two very important public consultation events taking place that will inform future developments at Hunterston Peninsula and the wider plans for the Firth of Clyde. We encouraged all our supporters to attend and to spread the word. This was an important opportunity to learn more and to have the community’s voice heard.

13th April 2019 Pre-Consultation Draft Of Clyde Regional Marine Plan Available For Public Consultation – Closing Date 27th May 2019

Details of the pre-consultation draft of the Clyde Regional Marine Plan available on the Clyde Marine Planning Partnership website for public comment with a closing date of 27th May 2019 and  a series of public events held around the region including at the Brisbane Centre, Largs on 11th May 2019, 6pm – 9pm

6th April 2019 Peelports Announce Public Consultation on ‘Master Plan’ for Hunterston PARC

FoFoC receive notification from Peelports that they have published their ’20 Year Master Plan’ for Hunterston PARC and that a six week public consultation will be held between 16th May – 29th June 2019.

6th April 2019 What Are The Facts About Potential Job Creation From Bringing Oil Rig Decommissioning to Hunterston?

The question of jobs generated by bringing decommissioning to Hunterston underpins much of the local and national support for the Hunterston project, but a careful look  at the evidence reveals that the claim of jobs in the hundreds made by advocates of the project are highly contentious.

8th March 2019 Questions in Scottish Parliament reveal Environmental Impact Assessment is being considered in light of changes to original plans for Decommissioning at Hunterston

MSP Ross Geer continues to raise questions in the Scottish Parliament about the lack of an EIA. Referring to information unearthed by the Friends of the Firth of Clyde (FoFoC) Ross asked the minister during a session of Portfolio Questions on 6th March ’19 why an EIA was not required for the decommissioning project at Hunterston when there is evidence that both Marine Scotland (MS) and Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) were of the opinion that an EIA would be required if the project was considered in its entirety.

5th March 2019 Date Set For First Meeting of Hunterston Decommissioning Liaison Committee

FOFOC learns that the first meeting of the Hunterston Construction Yard Liaison Committee (LC), which is required as part of the Conditional Planning Permission to allow use of the site for decommissioning of large marine structures at the site, will take place on Monday 18th March 2019, 2pm at Clydeport, Hunterston,

2nd March 2019 Watch this! The Hunterston Proposal, by Brandon Cook

If you watch one thing this weekend make time to look at ‘The Hunterston Proposal’ a short independent documentary film, made by journalist Brandon Cook,  that examines the proposals for decommissioning at Hunterston.  The film aims to provide a balanced  overview and includes interviews with representatives of Clydeport; environmental marine specialists, decommissioning academics and supporters of the Friends of the Firth of Clyde, leaving the viewer to form their own opinion

24th Feb 2019 Over 300 Attend Friends of the Firth of Clyde Public Meeting at Largs Academy on 21st February 2019

A massive turn out of local people and from neighbouring island communities, turned up to hear FOFOC presentation about Peel Ports plans for Oil Rig Decommissioning at Hunterston Peninsula. We   provided an overview of our understanding of the project; emphasised our whole hearted support for the development of an environmentally sustainable ‘circular economy’,  whilst also having significant concerns regarding the lack of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of the project; the scale and impact of the work required; the lack of evidence for promises of large numbers of jobs; and the risks to the wellbeing of local communities, along with the bird and marine life that is dependant on the Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) which surrounds Hunterston

13th February 2019 MSP Ross Greer writes to Scottish Government Minister on behalf of the Friends of the Firth of Clyde

MSP Ross Greer of the Green Party stepped forward to ask the Scottish Government to intervene in the failure of North Ayrshire Council (NAC) to require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of the proposals for oil rig and large marine vessel decommissioning at Hunterston Penninsula.

Writing in support of the Friends of the Firth of Clyde (FoFoC), Ross wrote directly to Rosanna Cunningham MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change & Land Reform.  Supported by evidence unearthed by a Freedom of Information Request (FOI) recently submitted by FoFoC to Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), Ross outlines the case for an EIA to be undertaken and calls on Rosanna Cunningham to intervene by Ministerial Review

5th February 2019 What Do You Need to Know About The Marine Scotland Licence Application?

Marine Scotland (MS) is the directorate within Scottish Government that is responsible for leading the protection of  Scotland’s coastal waters and seas with ‘the duel aim of  building sustainable economic growth from Scotland’s marine assets, and to safeguard its valuable marine ecosystems’.  We provide an overview of their role and how this relates to the licensing permissions that peel ports require for their decom project proposals

26th January 2019 Burns Night Fundraising Supper A Massive Success

The Village Inn, Fairlie was packed to the rafters with Friends of the Firth of Clyde supporters for an evening of food, music and dancing in support of our mission to demand full regulatory and environmental scrutiny of proposals to bring oil rig decommissioning to the Hunterston Peninsular

18th January 2019 Press Reports Hunterston Oil Rig Plans May Face Another Wait

The Ardrossan Herald report that the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA)  may delay their decision on granting the Waste Management License (WML) that Clydeport / Peelports submitted in October 2018 . SEPA told the Herald that “The application was received on 4 October. Whilst SEPA has a four month period to determine the application this can be extended if further time is required.” FOFOC have vigorously challenged the application for a WML rather than a Pollution Prevention & Control (PPC) permit, highlighting that the decision to not require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) prior to planning permission for decommissioning at Hunterston being granted by North Ayrshire Council (NAC) was based on the assumption that a PPC would be submitted to SEPA. Crucially the PPC regulations apply an integrated environmental approach to the regulation of industrial activities. This means that emissions to air, water and land, plus a range of other environmental effects, must be considered together.