SERIOUS MONDAY: PARTS OF UK COASTLINE CAN’T BE SAVED

The new boss of Britain’s Environment Agency has warned that stretches of our coastline are doomed and will be reclaimed by the sea in years to come.

Lord Smith of Finsbury said it is impossible both in financial and engineering terms to defend all of our coast and in some areas, people will have to be evacuated as the sea moves in.

According to a report in The Independent, the agency is to draw up a list of priority areas for action and Lord Smith has pledged that he will do his best to defend communities where there are significant households.

But he said we can’t escape the fact that the sea is continually eating away at parts of our coast – particularly in East Anglia and parts of the East and South coasts.

He suggested that parts of North East Norfolk and Suffolk face the most immediate risk and said the agency will be talking to people in the worst affected areas about which stretches to protect and those that cannot be defended.

Two years ago, maintenance of sea defences along parts of the Norfolk and Suffolk coast were withdrawn as “fruitless” prompting an angry reaction from local people.

According to Friends of the Earth, global sea level is set to rise by up to a metre over the next 100 years and will accelerate natural coastal erosion..

They point to lowlands around the Wash, the Norfolk and Suffolk coasts, areas around Teesside, the South West and  Lancashire as areas most under threat.

Many saltmarshes and mudflats, home to some of the UK’s most important and spectacular wildlife, are also at risk and at least 60 Sites of Special Scientific Interest are threatened by sea level rise.

Susan

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