A paper has been published by researchers from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and the Estonian University of Life Sciences on data collected in 1974 as part of a baseline survey of the terrestrial vegetation on Shetland.
Planning and initial construction of the Sullom Voe Terminal commenced in 1974 following the discovery of North Sea Oil in 1972. As a result the Sullom Voe Environmental Advisory Group (to become SOTEAG in 1978) was formed with the aim to carry out baseline ecological monitoring in the area. A paper published this year has highlighted that a survey of the vegetation in terrestrial habitats was also carried out after concern was raised that the terminal may have a negative impact on Shetland’s terrestrial habitats (Wood, C. M. and Bunce, R. G. H.: Survey of the terrestrial habitats and vegetation of Shetland, 1974 – a framework for long term ecological monitoring, Earth Syst. Sci. Data Discuss., 8, 827-857).
Although the survey took place over 40 years ago, the basic methodology has been used as a model to underpin further surveys and monitoring programmes across the whole of Great Britain.The data collected during the Shetland survey has now been made available through the following links: