Sensitivity assessment of habitats and key species to pressures associated with exploratory offshore drilling operations in Block 8 - Eratosthenes area, Cyprus

MER Deep Eratosthenes 2

Duration:                ca 2 months (July 2017 - August 2017)

Funded by:             ENI Cyprus Ltd. 

Sub-contracted by:   

                              Pro Iter Ambiente S.r.l.

                              HPC AG

                              Nicolaides & Associates Ltd.


Project Description:

The sensitivity assessment is a generic and widely used procedure to determine the likely effects of the pressures on a ‘hypothetical’ population. Sensitivity to anthropogenic pressures is primarily determined by the features (habitat or key species) ability to resist that pressure by virtue of its characteristic properties, e.g. hardness of substratum or physiological tolerance limits and behavioural plasticity (i.e. Resistance). At the same time, sensitivity also depends upon the capacity of the feature to recover from impacts following reduction or removal of the pressure (i.e. Resilience). Resistance and resilience scores to standardised pressures are combined to yield assessments of sensitivity to human activities. 

The scope of this work is the application of a sensitivity assessment on the ecosystem features that are hosted in the vicinity of the prospect area associated with the exploratory offshore drilling operations at the Eratosthenes South area, located in the south-eastern side of Block 8 (Cyprus EEZ) at water depth of approximately 2000 m. The Eratosthenes South prospect area lies a minimum distance of 10 km west from the foothills Eratosthenes Seamount, a biodiversity hotspot, and one the biggest seamounts in the Mediterranean basin. The exploratory drilling activities are anticipated to be performed in the last semester of 2017.


A final sensitivity assessment report was delivered to ENI Cyprus Ltd. on August 2017.


Contact information of MER's representative

Demetris Kletou

Telephone:+357 99527679

Email:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Partners ENI