A comprehensive review of seabed environmental surveys has been commissioned by UKOOA to document and analyse data collected from offshore environmental surveys carried out on the behalf of UK North Sea offshore oil operators. more
The purpose of these environmental surveys is to monitor the seabed in the vicinity of offshore operations with the aim of detecting environmental impact. It is estimated that some 520 seabed surveys were carried out between 1975 and 1998, covering work carried out by approximately 29 environmental monitoring contractors, government agencies and universities. 472 reports have been located, examined and listed in the database. The UKOOA seabed environmental review was carried out in three phases. Phase 1 consisted of the compilation of an inventory of surveys carried out in the UK sector. Phase 2 involved the production of database files containing detailed biological, chemical and locational data. Phase 3 examines the extent of contamination from offshore E and P activities and impacts on the biota, and will attempt to determine any large-scale trends over wider geographical areas. The database files were exported to the NBN gateway in October 2004 - note that a new version of the database is now available. This involved a fair amount of data cleaning due to the range of quality of the data that had been compiled. There were 203.945 records exported to the NBN gateway.
This copy of an original held by UKOOA (see link below). Some cleaning of the data was carried out and 37.247 records were not exported to the Gateway due to validation or data quality issues (Unknown species 9.860, Positional accuracy very vague 4.420, No Position 22.550, No site or date 417). It is possible that with additional work from a taxonomic specialist some of the unknown species may be able to be added, but many of these were actually records of debris, tomato pips etc.
Version 2 is now available from: http://www.ukooa.co.uk/issues/ukbenthos/index.htm