Saturday, 29 March 2008

PAC welcomes call for Broads debate

The Pike Anglers Club welcomes Natural England's call for a debate over climate change and its likely impact on the Norfolk Broads.

It comes after it emerged a secret meeting between the government-backed conservation group, the Broads Authority and Environment Agency had agreed proposals to abandon coastal sea defences and allow the Upper Thurne and its broads, along with six villages, to be flooded by the sea.

Some of Britain's most historically-important pike fisheries are under threat from the plan, including Hickling Broad, Horsey Mere, Heigham Sound and the Marthan broads.

The PAC has launched an online petition, calling for the government to make funding available for maintaining sea defences, which are under threat from cuts to the Envrionment Agency's flood defence budget.

It believes the Broads - which stand to lose up to an eighth of their total area under the plan - should be protected.

A Natural England spokeswoman told the Daily Telegraph: Natural England apokeswoman said the "surrender" option was one of many and their report was intended to start a debate about facing up to climate change.

She said: "We have got to face up to the issue. We have got to have discussion. There are difficult decisions to be made and we have produced this report after lengthy research.

"It's one of a number of options for consideration and we're in the early stages of trying to decide what options to take."

Six entire villages would be lost within a generation if the defences along a low-lying area of coastline at Winterton were abandoned to the North Sea.

To date, people living in Eccles, Sea Palling, Waxham, Horsey, Hickling and Potter Heigham have not been consulted over proposals which would sound the death knell for their communities.

Click here to sign the PAC's online petition on the 10 Downing Street website.

No comments: