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Publication - FOI / EIR Release

Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Limited: EIR release

Published: 17 Oct 2017

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

FOI reference: FOI/17/02048
Date received: 10 September 2017
Date responded: 9 October 2017

Information requested

  1. 'AOWFL, as per your own statement, state that they have been in discussions with local fishermen. You don't get any more local than me, Donald Trump and others who I am in contact with. Under the FOI, please provide evidence of such discussions.'

  2. 'On 26 March 2013, Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Limited (AOWFL) received consent from the Scottish Ministers. Please provide under the FOI, per above, the annual reports for the past four and a half years and any person present representing the fishing industry, in particular, salmon and sea trout' in relation to Environmental Management Monitoring (Condition 15 of the section 36 consent).'

  3. 'On the 27th August, 2017, Jim McKie sent an email containing the following; NtM for the Smit Kamara was issued on the 21st July and for the Seiont-A was issued on the 23rd August. Please provide, under the FOI, evidence of this and evidence that it was published in the appropriate magazines.'

  4. 'AOWFL have confirmed in writing that they have properly considered paragraph 1.3 of the licence. Please provide, under the FOI, AOWFL confirmation in writing, as above.'

  5. 'Please provide under the FOI evidence that AOWFL have engaged with local fishermen.'

Response

As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.

This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested.

Some of the information you have requested is available from:

http://www.gov.scot/Topics/marine/Licensing/marine/scoping/EOWDC and specifically: http://www.gov.scot/Topics/marine/Licensing/marine/scoping/EOWDC/SRMP and http://marine.gov.scot/datafiles/lot/eowdc/.

Under regulation 6(1)(b) of the EIRs, we do not have to give you information which is already publicly available and easily accessible to you in another form or format. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exception(s) under regulation(s) 10(4)(a) (do not hold the information), 10(4)(d) (unfinished or incomplete information), 11(1) (Personal data) and 11(2) (Personal data) of the EIRs applies to that information.

The reasons why that exception(s) applies are explained below.

The reasons for not providing information

Exceptions that apply.

Exceptions under regulation 10(4)(a), 10(4)(d), 11(1) and 11(2) of the EIRs apply to some of the information you have requested.

The Scottish Government does not have the information.

Under the terms of the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs (information not held), the Scottish Government is not required to provide information which it does not have. The Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested because we may not have been provided with the information.

This exception is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. While we recognise that there may be some public interest in information about AOWFL's engagement, clearly we cannot provide information which we do not hold.

Unfinished or incomplete information.

An exception under regulation 10(4)(d) of the EIRs (unfinished or incomplete information) applies to some of the information you have requested because it is an unfinished document.

This exception is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. We recognise that there is some public interest in release as part of open, transparent and accountable government. However, this is outweighed by the public interest in ensuring that unfinished or incomplete information which is still in being worked on or is under active consideration is not disclosed when it might misinform the public or give a misleading impression of the Government's view or position on the matter to which the information relates.

Personal data.

Regulation 11(1) – personal data.

An exception under regulation 11(1) of the EIRs (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is your own personal information, and so it is subject to the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA). This exception is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.

Regulation 11(2) – personal data.

An exception under regulation 11(2) of the EIRs (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998. This exception is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference

Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG

Published:
17 Oct 2017
Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Limited: EIR release