Commercial Fisheries Working Groups

The creation of CFWGs is a requirement of some Offshore Wind /Marine Renewables developers as part of their consent conditions. CFWG aid engagement between OW developers and the fishing sector and a primary aim is the production of a Fisheries Management and Mitigation Strategy (FMMS or Commercial Fisheries Mitigation Strategy (CFMS) in older consents). In most consents membership of a CFWG are also required to define and finalise the FMMS. (See Terms of reference for each CFWG ).

The FMMS provides details of commitments made by developers on management and mitigation measures relevant to commercial fisheries. A FMMS is a requirement, under some marine licences granted through the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 and/or Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009, for offshore wind farm developments. It may also be a requirement of a section 36 (“s.36”) consents granted by Scottish Ministers under the Electricity Act 1989. The FMMS must be prepared in consultation with, and all efforts should be made to agree the FMMS with, interested stakeholders. The final decision on approval of the FMMS lies solely with Scottish Ministers.

Two CFWG groups currently exist (see table below):
1 Forth and Tay; and
2 Moray Firth

These groups allow dialogue between renewable companies and fisheries stakeholders (both at a national and local level). Both CFWGs have also appointed Fishery Industry Representatives (FIRs) who support developers in the facilitation of two way communication with local fishermen. (see FIR Terms of Reference (TOR)).

Consent Condition example (NNG revised consent ) The following text is an extract of a consent condition that underpins the FMMS, a document that must be prepared in consultation with the CFWG.

Fisheries Management and Mitigation Strategy

The Company must no later than six months prior to the Commencement of the Development, submit a Fisheries Management and Mitigation Strategy (“FMMS”), in writing, to the Scottish Ministers for their written approval in consultation with the Scottish Fisherman’s Federation The Company must also remain a member of the Forth and Tay Commercial Fisheries Working Group (“FTCFWG”), or any successor group formed to facilitate commercial fisheries dialogue, to define and finalise the FMMS.

In order to inform the production of the FMMS the Company must monitor or collect data as relevant and agreed with Scottish Ministers. As part of any finalised FMMS, the Company must produce and implement a mitigation strategy for each commercial fishery that can prove to the Scottish Ministers that they would be adversely affected by the Development. The Company must implement all mitigation measures committed to be carried out by the Company within the FMMS. Any contractors, or sub-contractors working for the Company, must co-operate with the fishing industry to ensure the effective implementation of the FMMS.

Reason: To mitigate the impact on commercial fishermen.

More information and relevant documentation can be viewed for each of the Commercial Fisheries Working Groups by following the links below