Centre for Industrial Ocean Impacts


The Centre for Industrial Ocean Impacts conducts highly applied research in collaboration with SAMS Research Services Limited.

The Centre for Industrial Ocean Impacts aims to explore areas relating to anthropogenic disturbance of the oceans. The ocean continues to be used as a repository for waste produced by land-based mines and marine aquaculture, while the development of renewable energy infrastructure such as offshore wind farms and tidal turbines is introducing a further category of large-scale impact into the marine environment.

For all categories of industrial use of the ocean it is essential to identify and measure potential impacts so that these can be minimized and mitigated as far as possible. To achieve this we need a solid base of fundamental research to understand the processes that result from anthropogenic disturbance, and how these activities may enhance or inhibit natural ecosystem processes. Our current research builds on our track record of achievement in fields such as the impacts of coastal aquaculture and the biology and geochemistry of the deep sea bed. This expertise is readily applicable to emerging issues such as deep-sea mining waste disposal, mineral extraction and renewable energy developments.

We are currently active in the following research areas:

  • Marine disposal of mine tailings - Environmental impacts of Deep-Sea Tailings Placement (DSTP) in Papua New Guinea
  • Offshore hydrocarbon extraction - Independent review of Environmental Impact Assessments for oil and gas exploration leases around the Falkland Islands
  • Environmental impacts of marine aggregate extraction - Effects of resuspended sediment on biogenic reef-building benthos

Map of Scotland highlighting the location of SAMS

Key information and contact details

Centre Director: Dr Tracy Shimmield

Email: Tracy.Shimmield@sams.ac.uk
T: +44 [0]1631 559 225

Administrator: Rebecca Gore

Email: Rebecca.Gore@sams.ac.uk
T: +44 [0]1631 559 225

Centre for Industrial Ocean Impacts, Scottish Marine Institute, Oban, Argyll, PA37 1QA