Full Project Title: RICORE (Risk-based Consenting for Offshore Renewable Energy Projects)

Project Title: RiCORE [Risk-based Consenting for Offshore Renewable Energy projects]

Researchers: Dr. Mark Jessopp (SFI MaREI Research Fellow), Dr. Anne Marie O’Hagan (SFI Parsons Research Fellow) and Jeremy Gault (Beaufort Operations Manager)

T: 021 4250021 / 4703100

E: m.jessopp@ucc.ie; a.ohagan@ucc.ie; j.gault@ucc.ie

Funding Body: Horizon 2020

Programme: LCE 4 – 2014/2015: Market uptake of existing and emerging renewable electricity, heating and cooling technologies

Project Type: CSA

Period: 1 January 2015 – 30 June 2016


Project Description 

The consenting of offshore renewable energy is often cited as one of the main non-technical barriers to the development of this sector. A significant aspect of this is the uncertainty inherent in the potential environmental impacts of novel technology. To ensure consents are compliant with EU and national legislation, such as the Environmental Impact Assessment and Habitats Directives, costly and time consuming surveys are required even for required even for perceived lower risk technologies in sites which may not be of highest environmental sensitivity. It is therefore the aim of the RiCORE project to establish a risk-based approach to consenting where the level of survey requirement is based on the environmental sensitivity of the site, the risk profile of the technology and the scale of the proposed project. RiCORE will study the legal

framework in place in the partner Member States to ensure the framework developed will be applicable for roll out across these Member States and further afield. The next stage of the RiCORE project is to consider the practices, methodologies and implementation of pre-consent surveys, post-consent and post-deployment monitoring. This will allow a feedback loop to inform the development of the risk-based framework for the environmental aspects of consent and provide best practice. The project will achieve these aims by engaging with the relevant stakeholders including the regulators, industry and EIA practitioners, through a series of expert workshops and developing their outcomes into guidance. The impact of the project will be to improve, in line with the requirements of the Renewable Energy Directive specifically Article 13 (1), consenting processes to ensure cost efficient delivery of the necessary surveys, clear and transparent reasoning for work undertaken, improving knowledge sharing and reducing the non-technical barriers to the development of the Offshore Renewable Energy sector so it can deliver the clean, secure energy.


Environmental Research Institute

University College Cork, Lee Road, Cork