I have for some considerable time refrained from making comment or updates as there has been considerable activity ‘behind the scenes’ and I was conscious that any comment could have affected some of the negotiations and events which were taking place. However I believe the time is now right to comment on a number of relevant issues.
Firstly and perhaps most importantly (in the wider context) is the all new Central Government policy for Flood and Coastal Risk Management which came into being in July of this year. This is a policy which seeks to convince us, and no doubt the Association of British Insurers ( ABI ) that more will be done on the coast when in fact Government is looking to do much less with an ongoing reducing budget. The only positive I can find in the new policy is the fact that it removes any doubt that we manage our coast for fiscal reasons rather than sound coast management rationale. My own view is that the new policy is hugely divisive, has increased costs for the Maritime Authorities when seeking to provide a scheme which is subject to central funding grant in aid and could be damaging in the long term.
The conundrum for Government which this policy seeks to resolve is, how do we do less on the coast whilst convincing the public we are doing more! (more…)
Inevitably the Kelling to Lowestoft Ness Second Generation Shoreline Management Plan (SMP2) has reared its ugly head again. This time it takes the form of a consultation on the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) of the SMP2.
Whilst this latest consultation is concerned solely with the SEA it is, quite understandably, being interpreted by many local individuals and communities as a further ‘referendum’ on the SMP itself.
It is now almost six years since this particular SMP2 hit the press (Oct 04) and produced an absolutely unprecedented response (well over 2000 respondents) which expressed the stakeholders (public) utter revulsion and rejection of it and the policy path it proposed for many areas. There was and still remains no policy for or means of managing the consequences of its proposals.
Read Malcolm Kerby’s full comments on the CCAG Website
It is extremely regrettable and highly possible that global warming, sea level rise and climate change will have little ‘work’ to do in terms of wrecking our coast as we know it and the lives of all who live and work in the coastal zone as we progress through this century. Our Government will already have done that long before we/they know or understand what the real extent the effects of climate change may be.
By assuming the worst and throwing away communities and land around our coast now we are not managing the problem we are abdicating our responsibilities to future generations and binding them into costs they may never have been forced to bear had we been more pragmatic in our approach today.
Read the full article by Malcolm Kerby on the CCAG website