Correspondance with Environment Agency

We asked the Environment agency to carry out an investigation of water quality on the Symene and about Nutrient neutrality on the FL site. Below is their response. We will continue to investigate and pressfor action on these issues

  1. We are not able to implement additional monitoring with respect to planning applications as this does not fall under our current monitoring programme. There are other complex but related drivers which determine where and what we monitor. We currently have a water quality monitor in the Simene at Magdalen Lane that takes readings every 30 minutes. Whilst the purpose of this monitoring is to provide detailed information on sediment flux in the Simene, if we did find evidence of pollution we would pass this to our Environment Management team to investigate further.

A summary of Water Framework Directive classification status for the Simene catchment is given on the Catchment Data Explorer: The classifications are high for dissolved oxygen and ammonia and good for phosphate and invertebrates. We have assessed that the failure to meet good ecological status for macrophytes is due to morphological constraints rather than water quality.

The Wessex Water storm overflow at West Bay Sluices is equipped with an event duration monitor and Wessex Water are required to provide annual and bathing water (May to September) returns to us each year detailing the number and duration of spills. This is in line with design expectations. It is worth noting that the bathing water quality at West Bay West is currently classified as ‘Excellent’:

2. Does the Dorset Council statement have any relevance to the development at Vearse Farm Bridport?

No. Nutrient neutrality is not relevant to this development because it is not within a defined protected site or river catchment. These nutrient neutrality requirements are implemented by Natural England who would also lead on advising Dorset Council on planning applications which fall within these areas.

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