- On 19th November 2018
- In Ecology, Sediment Management
- By William Coulet
As part of an exciting new development, a series of weirs on the river Soar and Trent in Nottinghamshire are considered for renewable energy generation. This development brings prospects for renewable energy, but great care needs to be taken to avoid impact on the local geomorphology and ecology. Exo Environmental was appointed to carry out a number of sediment surveys, subsequent particle size distribution analysis and mussel survey.
“We were very impressed with Exo Environmental. They were quick to mobilise, kept to a tight schedule and kept us updated throughout. When we requested additional work or tweaked the scope, this was dealt with quickly and pragmatically. Most importantly, the survey work, analysis and reporting was all completed to a high standard and was received favourably by the Environment Agency.” William Houghton | Renewable Energy Engineer
We have set out with a zodiac dinghy, a van Veen sampling grab and a lot of warm clothing to create a map detailing the coarseness of the sediment in the three locations. The challenging environment was a refreshing alternative from the standard rivers, estuaries and lakes. Close to the weirs there was a strong current (3m/s) which meant that anchoring at a sampling station was unavoidable. Boat handing skills were further tested to a varying water depth between 0 and 5 metres, aquatic weeds, hard bed rock and plenty of keen fishermen.
Shallow sections of the survey area were approached on foot, the team waded through what could be described as a jungle, something one would not expect in rural England. With the GPS antenna, we felt like the radio infantry men in Vietnam as we collected the few remaining samples by hand.
Following three days of sampling, it took us another week to process the 168 samples and determine their particle size distribution. Under this tight schedule, we created maps showing the relative coarseness of sediment across the sample areas such as the one shown here.
The maps show the baseline data (D50) which will support the permitting process for the renewable energy proposal.