Renowned Environmentalists Express Concerns about Barrage Proposals
Sir David Attenborough has written to us saying that he well understands our concerns about the threat to the Ribble.
Sir David’s most recent BBC TV series made a clear argument that evidence of climate change is now indisputable. In “The State of the Planet” he echoes our concerns when he states:
‘The future of Life on Earth depends on our ability to take action. Many individuals are doing what they can, but real success can only come if there is a change in our societies and our economies, and in our politics. I have been lucky enough in my lifetime to see some of the greatest spectacles that the natural world has to offer. Surely we have a responsibility to leave for future generations a planet that is healthy and inhabitable by all species.’
Professor John Whitelegg, environmentalist and sustainability expert, who recently presented a lecture at UCLAN, has lent his support to the Save the Ribble Campaign and has stated categorically that he ‘would not support a tidal barrage’.
Likewise, Dr Ron Freethy, Communications, Environmental and Tourism consultant, has expressed concerns about the barrage proposal.
One of the consequences of global warming and climate change is the likely rise in sea levels over the coming years and decades. Fragile ecosystems such as the Ribble are already vulnerable to the effects of climate change, and low lying flood plain areas will be at increased risk of flooding as sea levels rise. Building a barrage on the Ribble will exacerbate these risks at a time when we should be considering ways to protect our environment from the effects of global warming: a barrage on the Ribble will increase flood risk both sides of the barrage, and deplete our natural and sustainable sea defences that the mudflats and salt marsh of the estuary provide.
The Environment Agency is warning against building on floodplain as this puts ‘new development at risk from flooding or [is] likely to exacerbate flooding elsewhere’ which alone should prohibit the Riverworks housing and business building development proposals on both Preston and South Ribble flood plain.
In addition, this so called ‘Central Park’ building development, alongside those earmarked for Frenchwood and Fishwick Bottoms, will result in the loss of a broad range of natural habitats which support diverse wildlife species. Once our Green Belt is developed and built on it will be lost forever.
At the Save The Ribble Campaign, we will continue to do as much as we can to protect our local environment, and we believe that success will only be achieved when City planners embrace a new vision for the future of our area: one which compliments and enhances our natural environment in a way that is sustainable for future generations and supports the habitats of all species.