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Transfers of crude oil are proposed in the Inner Moray Firth – in exactly the place where the only resident pod of bottlenose dolphins in Scotl

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Transfers of crude oil are proposed in the Inner Moray Firth – in exactly the place where the only resident pod of bottlenose dolphins in Scotland lives and breeds!

There is an existing jetty at Nigg where oil transfers have taken place for over 30 years – why not do it there rather than in the open sea on top of the dolphins?

This has been described by a leading academic as “The least appropriate location on the whole coast of Europe to undertake this activity.”

  • Nearly 2 million tonnes of dirty water (contaminated ships ballast water) will be discharged directly on top of the dolphins each year.
  • Fumes from the crude oil will be released which may make the dolphins really sick long-term.
  • Minor and major oil spills would severely damage our valuable marine ecosystem

dolphins

In 2015 the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation Ltd reported 8 oil spills from tankers totalling over 7000 tonnes of oil spilled into the sea around the world.

This web site has been established to provide information relating to the application by The Port of Cromarty Firth (formerly the Cromarty Firth Port Authority) for a ship to ship oil transfer license.

Unlike a planning application, the determination process undertaken by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) is not undertaken in the public domain or in a transparent manner.

This website therefore aims at providing clear, easy to access information on the application, responses from statutory and non-statutory organisations as well as up to date news on the campaign by residents of Cromarty to stop this entirely inappropriate development. Click on the STS Representation tab on the left to read the significant objections to the application from various statutory organisations and NGOs (if we find a letter of support we will publish this too!)

As soon as this particular campaign has been won,  the Cromarty Rising web site will move on to focus on more positive projects and initiatives which are more beneficial for the Town and its environs.

Summary of the Application and Key Issues.

The application is for up to 48 transfers of oil annually, with a maximum transfer of 180,000 tonnes per operation, with mooring points just to the east of the South and North Sutors.

The key issues with the application are;

  1. the fundamental inadequacy of the assessment of impact on the SAC dolphin population and the bird SPA.
  2. the lack of evidence of a realistic spill volume as the basis for the assessment
  3. the inadequate assessment of the impact of Volatile Organic Compounds on widlife and humans
  4. the inadequate cumulative assessment, complete lack of assessment of alternative options and missing economic assessment
  5. the total lack of consultation by the Port Authority to statutory and non statutory consultees even though this application has been in development for a number of years
  6. There is an existing jetty at Nigg where oil transfers have taken place for over 30 years – why move this to sea where VOC’s cannot be captured, ballast water will not be treated and wildlife will be impacted?

 

If you would like to make your voice heard and help to protect the ecosystem of the Cromarty and Moray Firths, download a pre-formatted letter to Nicola Sturgeon here. Thank you!