RSPB attacks government port policy
THE Royal Society for the Protection of Birds has slammed the Government's policy on port development, claiming it is "fundamentally flawed".The comments came at the planning inquiry into possible Bathside Bay development - a £300 million deep-sea container facility at Harwich proposed by Hutchison Ports (UK) Ltd.
THE Royal Society for the Protection of Birds has slammed the Government's policy on port development, claiming it is "fundamentally flawed".
The comments came at the planning inquiry into possible Bathside Bay development - a £300 million deep-sea container facility at Harwich proposed by Hutchison Ports (UK) Ltd.
If the proposals are given the go-ahead there would be the expansion of the existing international port and creation of Harwich International Container terminal in adjoining Bathside Bay.
At the inquiry yesterday, Dr Duncan Huggett, for the RSPB, said the future shape of the container port industry in the UK was likely to be larger ships calling at fewer ports.
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He said the RSPB position was that the Government's framework for ports was flawed because it did not encourage developers to look at the "full range of alternative solutions".
"The Government has failed to develop a strategic, long-term and forward planning framework for ports that would facilitate the taking of decisions now for long-term benefits," he told the inquiry.
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Dr Huggett said more should also be done to ensue the existing ports were used to their full potential.
"Alternative solutions to constructing the Bathside Bay proposal must be considered. An important alternative way of meeting future demand, that is consistent with Government policy, is making maximum use of the existing facilities."
If the scheme gets the go-ahead, the expansion would allow the port to deal with the largest container ships in the world.
There would be a further 1,400 metres of quay, 11 ship-to-shore gantry cranes and making the location the second biggest deep water dock in the UK.
The inquiry continues.