Skip to main content

Severn Barrage

Volume 479: debated on Thursday 17 July 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform if he will hold discussions with the Welsh Assembly Government and Ministerial colleagues on the environmental effects of the proposed Severn Barrage. (219306)

Ministerial colleagues and Welsh Assembly Government are involved in the Severn Tidal Power Feasibility Study and discussions are held through our feasibility study ad-hoc Ministerial Group. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and Jane Davidson AM, Minister for Environment, Sustainability and Housing, chair the quarterly parliamentary forum for all MPs, Lords and Welsh Assembly Members interested in the study. I chair the quarterly regional forum for the local authorities, local business and environmental organisations. The next meetings of the fora will take place in Cardiff on 24 October.

DEFRA and Welsh Assembly Government are fully involved with the environmental workstream of the study and together with other Government Departments are members of the feasibility study project board.

The feasibility study will include a strategic environmental assessment (SEA) to ensure a detailed understanding of the estuary’s environmental resource, recognising the nature conservation significance of the estuary.

The Welsh Assembly Government are involved in the SEA Steering Group which is made up of representatives from a wide group of stakeholders including statutory consultees, business and environmental NGOs.