Microtunneling, or “no-dig” tunneling is a trenchless method of installing a wide range of infrastructure items such as wiring, cables, oil and gas pipelines and any number of underground items.
In a marine setting, this means that there will not be any marine environments disturbed or altered in the process of the installation of infrastructure.
Some of the more obvious advantages of this method of underground installation is fact that there will be no pollution from large machinery. When underground microtunneling is advanced, the greenhouse gasses that are emitted are negligible at best, and far less than traditional trench types of construction projects.
The carbon emissions when using trenchless microtunneling are substantially reduced to the point that they are almost undetectable. When we are talking about a marine environment, this is a vital factor as all of the marine environments of plants and wildlife are left undisturbed before, during and after the project.
Examples of this amazing technology include the placement of a high voltage power line under a wetland that is protected and which supports over 75,000 different kinds of waterfowl, as well as seals, otters, porpoises, conger eels, oysters, mussels and countless other forms ot wildlife.
Another example is a marine turbine cable that was installed to provide a tidal energy system in an oceanic ecosystem without disturbing the marine environment the least bit. This was done in Norther Ireland, where a marine turbine was installed in which enough energy will be produced to provide for over 1,000 homes. No marine impact has been a factor at all in this project.
As this type of microtunneling technology continues to evolve and grow, it is estimated that there will be more and more advantages taken in order to implement more tidal projects, more access to areas, where before there was no access, and more innovative development of still more efficient and useful implications.
Marine renewable energy systems are assisting in the saving and preservation of the natural resources worldwide, and is helping to solve the energy needs of the planet, all the while not having to disturb the marine environments at all.
The marine environments from bushlands, waterways, swamplands and wetlands all remain intact and undisturbed as the microtunneling continues to provide access to areas heretofore not accessible at all to such projects. The impact to the marine environment is zero, while the boost to economies and energy needs is great.