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Bristol Channel (Dredging)

Volume 210: debated on Thursday 25 June 1992

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To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what consultations he has had with the chairman of Cardiff Bay development corporation concerning the corporation's prospecting licence for sand in the Bristol channel deeps.

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make a statement concerning his licensing policy on sand and aggregate extraction by dredging in the Bristol channel (a) inshore and (b) in the deeps; what consultations he has had with the local authorities on revising the licensing policy; and what representations he has received from the building industry in the region concerning the impact on costs of such policy alterations.

Government policy is set out in "Minerals Planning Guidance Note 6 1989: Guidelines for Aggregates Provision in England and Wales". Marine dredged sand and gravel has a very important role 10 play in maintaining supplies of aggregates. It reduces the pressure to work land of agricultural or environmental value and dredging should be encouraged wherever this is possible without introducing a risk of coast erosion or unacceptable damage to sea fisheries and the marine environment.There will be a review of the arrangements for marine dredged minerals and there will be public consultation on that later this year.