Controversy continues to surround plans by the Port Authority of Cromarty Firth, Scotland to transfer millions of tonnes of crude oil between ships anchored near the mouth of the Firth.
The proposed location is within the Moray Firth Special Area of Conservation for bottlenose dolphins and is an important environmental site regularly visited seabirds, all of whom could be threatened if the oil transfer plans are given the go-ahead. But the plans will now be subject to a second public consultation, with many people in the area feeling that they were not properly consulted in the first place.
WDC also feels that the Cromarty Firth Port Authority’s (CFPA) assessment of environmental impacts of such a plan was inadequate and fall far short of what is required under the EU Habitat Directive Regulations.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency, who are determining the application, stated that ‘a number of areas were identified as needing additional thought’, and that as a result ‘a more refined and comprehensive application’ will be delivered.
Cromarty Firth Port Authority already has a licence for ship-to-ship transfers for vessels lying alongside the Nigg Oil Terminal. Between 2009 and 2014 there were more than 85 such operations, involving over 6.5 million tonnes of oil.
How you can help
Please make a donation or adopt a dolphin from the Moray Firth today to help ensure a secure and safe future for these special creatures.