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River Lymington: Ferries

Volume 503: debated on Thursday 14 January 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what studies Natural England has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated to secure bathymetric and other data to measure adverse effects of ferry movements on the Lymington river mudflats and the effectiveness of potential mitigation and compensation measures. (310730)

Natural England has evaluated three studies on the risk of impacts of the W class ferry on the Natura 2000 sites and Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) at Lymington, produced by: ABPmer; H R Wallingford; and Black and Veatch.

Natural England has also commissioned and evaluated technical advice from H R Wallingford on the technical effectiveness of Wightlink’s proposal to mitigate any adverse impacts of the W class ferries on these sites.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what budget has been allocated to the process of evaluating submissions to the consultation on the proposal to deposit dredge material on the Lymington mudflats scheduled to end on 22 January; and if he will make a statement. (310731)

Natural England has an internal team to manage the stakeholder engagement process in relation to Wightlink's mitigation proposals. This team is supported by expert technical advice. No budget has been allocated for this exercise, the costs of which will be met from existing resources.