Description

Construction and operation of new coastal defence structures. Maintenance of existing coastal defences including management of beaches, bunds, ditches/drainage, managed realignment sites, beach/sediment recharge or on-going sediment feeding, management of vegetation, sand dune stabilisation, sea walls, groynes, rock armours, wave screens, breakwaters, gabions, cliff stabilisation, floodgates/sluices. Includes consideration of vessels/machinery/vehicles and materials associated with activity.

Key locations

Harbours, ports, and low-lying areas of coast in Northumberland and Berwickshire

Frequency

Normally as and when required

Potential issues

Inappropriate development or coastal defence schemes can lead to:

  • Modification of inshore coastal processes potentially leading to changed rates of erosion/accretion of sediment
  • Modified hydrography/altered water movement
  • Increased turbidity causing decreased light penetration
  • Siltation caused by increased levels of particulate material due to construction works or dumping of material
  • Abrasion, most likely to affect reefs but also possibly caves
  • Smothering of habitat features (effective removal), due to dumping of material
  • Removal/destruction of habitat features
  • Non-toxic contamination caused by release of organic material from the land
  • Disturbance to seals and/or birds
  • Inappropriate fly tipping and impromptu, unconsented coastal defence have been reported at spots along the coast

Features of Marine Protected Areas which might be affected

  • Reefs
  • Sea caves
  • Sand and mud flats
  • Inlets and bays
  • Saltmarsh
  • Grey seal
  • Birds (wintering and breeding)

Legal Responsibilities or Duties (England)

A number of legal powers, duties or regulatory tools exist which are relevant to this activity and its management. These are summarised in the table below:

Legal Power, Duty or Regulatory Tool Relevant Legislation Lead Organisation
Requirements for Planning Permission

 

Town and Country Planning Act 1990

 

Northumberland County Council

 

North Tyneside Council

Requirements for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)

 

 

 

The Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Amendment) Regulations 2017

 

 

 

 

The Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2007

 

Northumberland County Council

North Tyneside Council

 

 

 

 

 

Marine Management Organisation

Requirement for Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA)

 

The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 (Regulation 63) All Competent or Responsible Authorities as defined by the Regulation
Requirement for Marine Licences Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 (Section 71) Marine Management Organisation
Requirement for SSSI Consent, Assent or Advice

 

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended) (Section 28) Natural England
Duty on Public Authorities to consider the effect of proposed activities on MCZs before authorising them Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 (Section 126) All Public Authorities

Relevant Guidance, Plans or Codes (England)

The following guidance, codes, plans or strategies are also relevant to the management of this activity:

Name Description Responsible Organisation Statutory or Non-Statutory?
Shoreline Management Plan The Scottish Borders to the River Tyne Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) sets out how the coastline should be managed over the next 100 years http://www.northeastcoastalobservatory.org.uk/data/Reports/ Northumberland County Council Non-Statutory

Details of Current Management (England)

The Environment Agency has responsibility for flood defence in England, including coastal defences The Scottish Borders to the River Tyne Shoreline Management Plan sets out long term coastal defence options and priorities for the coast.  Development on the coast is largely managed and regulated through the planning process and through the issuing of licences and consents. A summary of the main regulatory controls on coastal development (including flood defence) is given below:

Land Use Planning:

Developments above low water will require planning permission from the Local Planning Authority. On land designated as a European site (SAC or SPA) permission from the Local Planning Authority will still be needed for activities which would normally be considered under a General Development Order (Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017, Regulation 77).

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) will be needed for activities which fall within the scope of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017 and/or The Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2007. Screening and scoping opinions on the need for an EIA are provided by the Local Planning Authority for the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017 while the Marine Management Organisation provides scoping and screening opinions for the Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2007.

Habitats Regulations Assessment:

Before deciding to undertake, or give any consent, permission or other authorisation for activities which might impact on a SAC or SPA, Competent Authorities are required by law to undertake an assessment that there will be no significant impact on the features for which the site has been notified. This assessment comprises several distinct stages which are collectively described as a ‘Habitats Regulations Assessment’ (or HRA). This will include formal screening for any Likely Significant Effects (either alone or in combination with other plans or projects). Where these effects cannot be excluded they are then assessed in more detail through an Appropriate Assessment (AA) to determine if an adverse effect on the integrity of the site can be ruled out. If an adverse effect on the site cannot be ruled out then the project can only go ahead if there are imperative reasons of over-riding public interest and if the necessary compensatory measures can be secured.

Competent Authorities are also required to review any existing consents or permissions which may affect the integrity of a European site. This has work has already been done for all European sites within Northumberland/North Tyneside with the exception of the Northumberland Marine SPA which was designated in 2017

Consents and Licences:

Activities between mean high water spring tide and the territorial limit (including estuaries, rivers and channels where water flows at mean high water spring tide) are subject to requirements for a Marine Licence from the MMO. Activities which require a marine licence including removal or deposition of materials in the intertidal or sub-tidal area. The construction, alteration or improvement of any pipeline in the UK marine area, other than those used in relation to oil and gas, carbon capture and storage, require a licence https://www.gov.uk/guidance/do-i-need-a-marine-licence

Consent or Assent from Natural England may be needed for certain activities on Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) if these are not already included within any planning permission or statutory licence. Natural England should be consulted for their formal advice on impacts to SSSIs as part of the consultation progress for planning permission or granting of a statutory licence.

Statutory Duty to consider impacts on Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs):

Public authorities have a statutory duty to consider the effect of proposed activities on MCZs before authorising them and to impose restrictions on the authorisation of activities that may have a significant risk of hindering the conservation objectives of the site.

Legal Responsibilities or Duties (Scotland)

A number of legal powers, duties or regulatory tools exist which are relevant to this activity and its management. These are summarised in the table below:

Legal Power, Duty or Regulatory Tool Relevant Legislation Lead Organisation
Requirements for Planning Permission

 

Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 Scottish Borders Council
Requirements for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)

 

 

The Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Scotland) Regulations 2017

 

 

The Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2007

Scottish Borders Council

 

 

 

 

Marine Scotland

Habitats Regulations Appraisal (HRA) of impacts

 

The Conservation (Natural Habitats, &c.) Regulations 1994 (Regulation 48) All Competent or Responsible Authorities as defined by the Regulation.
Requirement for Marine Licences

 

Marine (Scotland) Act 2010

(Part 4)

Marine Scotland
Requirement for SSSI Consent or Advice

 

Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act 2004 (Sections 13-17) Scottish Natural Heritage
Biodiversity Duty on Public Bodies Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act (2004) (Section 1) Duty on all public bodies

Relevant Guidance, Plans or Codes (Scotland)

The following guidance, codes, plans or strategies are also relevant to the management of this activity:

Name Description Responsible Organisation Statutory or Non-Statutory?
Forth Estuary Local Flood Risk Management Plan Local flood risk management plan which also covers the Berwickshire coast Edinburgh City Council (with input from Scottish Borders Council) Non-Statutory

Details of Current Management (Scotland)

Local Authorities are responsible for flood defence measures in Scotland. The Forth Estuary Local Flood Risk Management Plan sets out local flood risk measures for the area which includes the Berwickshire coast. Development on the coast is largely managed and regulated through the planning process and through the issuing of licences and consents. A summary of the main regulatory controls on coastal development (including flood defence) is given below:

Land Use Planning:

Developments above low water will require planning permission from the Local Planning Authority (Scottish Borders Council). Activities on land designated as a European site (SAC or SPA), permission from the Local Planning Authority will still be needed for activities which would normally be considered under a General Development Order (Conservation (Natural Habitats, &c.) Regulations 1994, Regulation 60).

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) will be needed for activities which fall within the scope of The Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Scotland) Regulations 2017 and/or The Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2007. Screening and scoping opinions on the need for an EIA are provided by the Local Planning Authority for the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Scotland) Regulations 2017 while the Marine Scotland provides scoping and screening opinions for The Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2007

Habitats Regulations Appraisal:

Before deciding to undertake, or give any consent, permission or other authorisation for activities which might impact on a SAC or SPA, Competent Authorities are required by law to undertake an assessment that there will be no significant impact on the features for which the site has been notified. This assessment comprises several distinct stages which in Scotland are collectively described as a ‘Habitats Regulations Appraisal’ (or HRA). This will include formal screening for any Likely Significant Effects (either alone or in combination with other plans or projects). Where these effects cannot be excluded they are then assessed in more detail through an Appropriate Assessment (AA) to determine if an adverse effect on the integrity of the site can be ruled out. If an adverse effect on the site cannot be ruled out then the project can only go ahead if there are imperative reasons of over-riding public interest and if the necessary compensatory measures can be secured.

The Scottish Natural Heritage website contains further details of this.

Consents and Licences:

Activities between mean high-water spring tide and the territorial limit (including estuaries, rivers and channels where water flows at mean high water spring tide) are subject to requirements for a Marine Licence from Marine Scotland.  Activities which require a marine licence including removal or deposition of  materials in the intertidal or sub-tidal area http://www.gov.scot/Topics/marine/Licensing/marine Certain exemptions exist for the need for a Marine Licence. More information on this can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/marine-licensing-exempted-activities/marine-licensing-exempted-activities

Consent from Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) may be needed for certain activities on Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) if these are not already included within any planning permission or statutory licence. SNH should be consulted for their formal advice on impacts to SSSIs as part of the consultation progress for planning permission or granting of a statutory licence.

Biodiversity Duty:

Under the Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act (2004), all public bodies in Scotland are required to further the conservation of biodiversity when carrying out their responsibilities. This includes coastal and marine biodiversity where relevant to the functions of the public body. The Wildlife and Natural Environment (Scotland) Act (2011) requires public bodies in Scotland to provide a publicly available report, every three years, on the actions which they have taken to meet this biodiversity duty.

Gaps in Management (Scotland)

Scottish section of the partnership area is not covered by a Shoreline Management Plan