One part of the IMI’s working structure is to offer impartial legal advice to companies, organisations and governmental organisations seeking to pursue infrastructure projects in coastal areas that may affect wildlife in the surrounding areas. We work together with governments and private companies to ensure that future work on ports and estuary areas cohere with legal and social requirements.  We have over 10 years of consulting experience at IMI, and we are always looking for new collaborators where we are able to share our expertise and specialist knowledge.

Consulting partners
Here are our current consulting projects:

Province of Zeeland
We are currently collaborating with the Province of Zeeland to complete a large project concerning the permitting process for tidal generators. The study’s main aim is to provide an overview of laws and regulations and to think about possible recommendations to improve the permitting process for tidal generators.

Tidal technologies have greatly advanced in recent years, and there has been a series of prototype testing. Although the development of tidal technology devices has progressed with the aim to implement full-scale models, there are very few permanent permits for these devices in Northwest Europe – apart from La Rance. The rest of the permits for tidal devices are temporary permits for innovative and testing devices, as well as permits for test sites.

Frank Neumann and IMI’s consultants have worked together to compile a comprehensive report regarding the policies and regulations on the readiness and facilitation of tidal current devices in the Pro-Tide areas. The project explored cases in the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands.

Ghent–Terneuzen Canal
IMI has also started a short-term project with the Schelde Commission. This project focuses on the Ghent-Terneuzen Canal, which runs from the Western Scheldt (the Netherlands) to Ghent (Belgium). The objective of the project is to advise on potential risks and answer forthcoming questions relating to the canal development.

The sluice complex at Terneuzen is an important gateway to the ports of Terneuzen and Ghent and is an essential shipping route between the Netherlands, Belgium and France. The current sluice is a bottleneck for inland and seagoing vessels coming from and going to Ghent. In 2012 Flanders and the Netherlands decided to rebuild and improve the sluice. The Flemish-Dutch Scheldt Commission’s (VNSC) project team called ‘New Sluice Terneuzen’ is working on the project preparations. The VNSC has asked IMI to advise on the legal and administrative risks (bestuurs-juridische risico’s) and points of attention.