UK dredging figures released
THE British Marine Aggregate Producers Association (BMAPA) and The Crown Estate have issued a report detailing the extent of UK dredging for the year 2003.
The report is part of the commitment of both organizations to manage marine resources as effectively as possible –– other initiatives include the review of all dredging licences over a five-year rolling period and the surrender of areas no longer containing commercially useful sand and gravel reserves.
The results show that a total of 22.22 million tonnes of sand and gravel were extracted from the licensed areas in England and Wales during 2003. This represents a slight increase over the 2002 figures when 21.93 million tonnes were dredged.
At the same time, however, the total area of seabed licensed in 2003 decreased by 4% to 1,245km2, while the area of seabed dredged during 2003 reduced by 4% to 144km2. This reduction in the area of seabed is primarily a result of improved resource and operational management by the marine aggregates industry.
Commenting on the report, Martin Drury, chairman of BMAPA, said the Association and The Crown Estate were absolutely committed to comprehensive reporting and were determined to continue to provide a clear and detailed picture of UK aggregate dredging.
Tony Murray, offshore asset manager for The Crown Estate, added: ‘It is in everybody’s interest to be open and transparent about the activities of the marine aggregates industry. Future decisions on the wise use of the marine environment can only be taken with a comprehensive picture of the myriad of demands placed upon it.’