Laying a cable through the Scottish countryside always comes with environmental consequences.
A 26km HVDC cable route which included the formation of a 20m wayleave, installation of an access road, the excavation of a cable trench, horizontal directional drilling and the restoration of the area to pre-project land use. The route crossed several habitat types dominated by agricultural land use with occasional areas of peat, with numerous watercourse crossings varying from CAR registrations to minor watercourses. The route skirted one European and several national/locally designated sites. The project was subject to permitted development status therefore no planning conditions were attached to the project; however, a voluntary EIA was completed to identify environmental constraints. A Construction Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) was created by the principle contractor which described the methods that they would use to mitigate environmental impacts associated with the project. A method statement for working in proximity to the European designated site was also included, this provided confidence that the project did not need to undertake a Habitat Regulations Appraisal (HRA).
Auditing Environmental Clerk of Works Scope
As the client’s representative, the auditing environmental clerk of works scope was to inspect/audit the projects compliance to project documentation and legislation and report to the client’s environmental manager and site management teams. Deliverables included a weekly inspection report and a monthly audit. Environmental constraints associated with the project;
- Water management and pollution control
- Waste management
- Protected species
- Materials management
The auditing environmental clerk of works provided the client with a level of due diligence and reassurance that activities were being undertaken as per the project documentation. The Environmental Clerk of Works also reported any non-compliance and ensured it was dealt with in line with the client’s procedures. The audits and inspections also provides the project with information on areas of required improvement which can direct the content of tool box talks.
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