World class research taking place in Wales



€100.4 million EU structural funds prioritised for marine energy in Wales

Consenting Guidance


To assist with the application process for marine licences

Natural Resources Wales Research

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) brings together the functions of the Countryside Council for Wales, Environment Agency Wales and Forestry Commission Wales, as well as some functions of Welsh Government.  NRW’s purpose is to ensure that the natural resources of Wales are sustainably maintained, used and enhanced, now and in the future.

NRW are advisors to the Welsh Government, to industry and to the wider public and voluntary sector.  They advise on how new policies, legislation, developments and other issues affect the environment. They are also the regulator responsible for marine licencing and European Protected Species licencing for marine energy developments in Welsh waters.

NRW is committed to the sustainable production of green energy at sea.  They have a key role to play in providing advice to the Welsh and UK Governments on the development of the offshore marine renewable energy sector and potential impacts on the marine environment of Wales, including wildlife and habitats, water quality, flood risk and seascapes and landscapes.  In addition NRW work closely with others, including marine renewable energy developers and key stakeholders in the maritime environment to ensure that Wales’ coasts and seas have the appropriate management frameworks and policies in place to secure their future.

NRW is committed to working to support the development of marine renewable energy in locations, and using technologies and approaches that avoid significant adverse environmental impacts. The report below summarises work CCW undertook to produce and share key synthesised evidence relating to Welsh natural heritage interests, in the form of GIS-based data layers, to be taken into account by strategic planning process for marine energy devices (wave and tidal stream).

Natural heritage evidence to support strategic planning for marine renewable energy CCW Policy Research

Coordinated Research

NRW strongly supports the need for coordinated research into the effects of wave and tidal stream technologies, in order to ensure the sustainable exploitation of marine renewable energy in Welsh waters.  In 2011 CCW produced the paper below detailing what it considered to be the priority areas for research to support the assessment and development of wave and tidal stream technologies.  This information may be of interest to academic institutions and research organisations, as well as regulators and developers. More recently, this paper has been incorporated into the work undertaken by Aquatera on behalf of The Crown Estate to consolidate wave and tidal EIA/HRA issues and research priorities.

CCW wave and tidal stream research priority recommendations

NRW is committed to supporting good practice in Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). NRW consider this good practice includes the consideration of natural heritage and environmental issues at the earliest possible stage of marine energy projects.  NRW have produced some draft advice on scoping an EIA for marine renewable energy developments, which outlines key matters that NRW will expect to be taken into consideration as part of an EIA.  It also provides a reference for further sources of relevant information.

NRW Draft advice on scoping EIA for Marine Renewable Energy