- On 12th January 2021
- In Ecology, Engineering, Research and Development
- By William
I’m ecstatic to thank you all, on behalf of the Exo team, for your valued support during the past year. We are all looking forward to new opportunities and research projects as well as continuing our exciting, existing work. I trust everyone had a good Christmas break and are fully rested for a fresh start offered by 2021.
2020 has been a shock to the system for most people. With so many liberties taken away, it creates a greater appreciation for the things that matter most. My sympathies for those families who’ve not only missed the social interaction but also lost loved ones.
The UK and EU governments have finally agreed the divorce agreement, which we hope will benefit both sides and continue to facilitate strong trade and not forget or diminish European Partnership Projects. How everything will function in 2021, I’m afraid, will be much based on similar knee-jerk decision making that we’ve experienced in 2020. We’ve experienced first-hand how the Port Infrastructure Fund for imports and exports after the transition period is littered with uncertainties. Yet Rome wasn’t built in one day and with this agreement in place, it is my belief that we are in a good position to move forward.
It is furthermore my understanding that the Environmental commitments from the UK Government will not deviate from EU legislation or standards. Procedures for evaluating large scale projects will still require an environmental impact assessment or a strategic environmental assessment. Albeit environmental standards will not likely be lowered by the UK Government, we may see changes or ‘improvements’ to interpretation or regulation. Further discussion will be ongoing so we have to wait and see how much will change in 2021.
With my passion for the environment and awareness of environmental degradation, environmental services offered by Exo were improved and consolidated over 2020. With more emphasis on the bespoke marine (coastal and estuary) and inland (rivers and lakes) sectors. From Water Framework Directive Assessment to Environmental Impact Assessments, implementation of nature based solutions to sediment sampling, we’ve taken the time to review and improve our methods and outputs.
2020 also meant the completion of the £1.1 million project Using Sediment As a Resource (USAR), Exo’s team has worked with Brightlingsea Harbour Commissioners since 2016 to deliver this project involving dredging and beneficial use of dredged sediment.
Sustainable and Resilient Coastal Cities (SARCC) project has now started its third year, you’ll find that many of the outputs are taking shape and a lot more resources are available on the website. Exo continues to develop hybrid-nature based solutions with our Greening the GreyTM technology, several trial projects were setup in 2020 and are now being monitored. The results will provide scientific data that will inform the best approaches for each unique environment.
The future brings more exciting projects and innovation. We’ve started Eco Reef Windfarm foundation protection with the help of “Growth Through Innovation” Funding, which will also involve a field trial. We’ll continue to work with all our excellent clients to move their projects forward big and small.
I’d like to acknowledge and thank our fantastic clients and academic colleagues that make our work possible. If you want to know more about our services, just have a quick look at our latest brochures, or get in touch with us, I’m confident that we can help.
Thank you for reading my 2021 message, and best wishes for the new year.