DUMPING DESTROYING OUR BEAUTIFUL COASTLINE?
of tonnes of waste has been dumped close to Whitsand Bay, one of
the finest beaches in the South West.
are concerned that it could result in an environmental disaster,
are lobbying to stop further dumping.
problem is compounded by the fact that nobody kept a record of what
was being dumped before 1990.
how bad is the problem? And what can be done to preserve the beauty
of our coastal areas for future generations?
divers at Whitsand Bay believe that the state of the sea bed has
seriously deteriorated in recent years.
was like the sea had leprosy"|
Mitchell, Police diver |
Dave Peake claims that the situation worsened dramatically after
the Navy started dumping as part of a controversial project called
RAFT (Remote Ammunition Facility Tamar).
of thousands of tonnes of silt, shale and mud were dredged from
the River Tamar and dumped at the licensed site.
the multi-million pound scheme was shelved earlier this year.
pressure from environmentalists, the Government has now agreed to
review the dump site and test the spoil.
claim that the dumping is damaging the stunning coastal waters around
material is spreading across a wide area from the tip site, even
threatening an internationally important conservation area in nearby
those who claim to be worst affected by the dumping are local fishermen.
diver assesses the impact of the dumping|
claim that it has had a detrimental impact on their fishing grounds.
are concerned about the effect on marine life.
marine experts claim that rare corals could be under threat.
dumping can destroy or degrade important habitats for aquatic species,
and cause coastal erosion and salutation, which affect the health
and productivity of the marine environment.
for the future
coastal waters around the UK are of great importance because they
carry a disproportionately large amount of marine life because of
their relative shallowness.
the quality of the marine environment is therefore of fundamental
are many potential sources of marine pollution including sewer
discharges and overflows, approved
dumping by ships, and litter
blown from beaches
80 per cent of all marine pollution
is caused by human activities such industrial development, inadequately
treated discharges of sewage and industrial wastes, dumping, and
what can be done? Testing and monitoring of the spoil and pollution
levels is of great importance.
also recommends the effective development and assessment of comprehensive
waste management plans.
hope that a thorough review of the situation will help to maintain
the vibrancy of aquatic life below our south western waters.