RSPB applauds estuarine habitat creation project in Yorkshire, England
The Environment Agency was driven by a statutory obligation to provide at least six hectares of new habitat to help counteract coastal squeeze. Impressively, through productive partnerships with the local community, they created and improved a total of 43 hectares of sustainable habitat, providing an immediate boost for wildlife.
RSPB applauds the scheme
According to a recent RSPB survey, there were over 700 birds roosting on the site of the Easington Beacon Lagoons habitat creation project. Visitors included 250 curlew, 300 redshank and 100 dunlin.
Project Manager Tim Cobb said: “A key objective was to provide functional roosting habitat for over-wintering wader bird species. It’s really encouraging to see the habitat establishing itself well so soon after project works on site were completed.”
The Environment Agency needed to compensate for present and future coastal squeeze losses at the Lagoons SSSI and Natura 2000 site at Kilnsea, near Spurn Point in the UK. The location of the new wetland needed to be as close as possible to the site of the habitat losses.
However, only small parcels of land could be secured. The project team then set up a biodiversity steering group, winning support from local organisations and stakeholders, including Natural England and the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust.
Through the collaboration, they were able to secure an extra 25 hectares of land to form a habitat corridor. They were also able to help a local group take on site management, reducing capital and maintenance costs.
At the outset, the project team and steering group had set a zero waste target for excavations and the resulting material. This was achieved by using the waste to create screening banks, which in turn are helping to prevent disturbance to protected bird species.
There was no need for a Waste Management Licence, helping to keep construction costs down, and material for the site compound was also used to make hard standing for the new car park.
Tim added: “By working in partnership with key stakeholders throughout, we’ve created a low-cost and sustainable scheme. It’s a really good example of collaborative working between partners with common interests.”
Project Manager Tim Cobb can be contacted on +44113 819 6223.