Then a dredging tool, about the size of a minibus, would excavate the seabed using metal “teeth” and suck up any debris, creating a trench for new section. The old section, half-buried close by, was cut up with a diamond wire cutter and removed.
The dredging tool drags along the seabed, creating clouds of sediment in its wake. Joep and Erik saw this as a possible threat to nearby sea life – including their sea bass.
Pure and simple
The area is species-rich, home to corals and sea grass. Before starting any work, project teams carried out environment impact assessments including biodiversity surveys. The results and samples were shared with the team from Singapore’s National Marine Biodiversity programme - opens on Shell Singapore.
The project included several steps to protect the delicate environment, as part of Shell’s approach to limiting the impact of projects. One approach was to install sensors feeding live information on water quality to a team on board the dredger. If sediment reached high levels, the team would stop and wait for the tide to turn.
For the fish farm, Ramon proposed an economic but effective solution: the installation of two filters on the pipes which draw up seawater for the hatcheries. These were included as part of the overall poject, which was successfully completed in late 2013.
“The new system delivers water that is even purer than before,” says Joep. “We are very happy.”
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