Charlestown, Limekilns and Pattiesmuir Community Council Response to
“Potential Impact on Coastal Processes” A report entitled ‘Potential Impact on Coastal Processes’ was prepared for Babcock Rosyth by Dr John Riddell dated May 2011. This report was produced as part of the HRO application process in response to specific objections and concerns raised by this community council. Our specific concerns were that the capital dredging and subsequent maintenance dredging would result in the loss of the foreshore in the villages and the potential collapse of our sea walls and historic harbours. The report produced does not allay these concerns. In our early discussions with Babcock we raised the loss of our foreshore as a concern, citing the impact the dredging to form the RD57 yard had in the late 80s. Babcock told us that it was not appropriate to carry out detailed analysis at that time but that they would accurately model the likely effect using the most advanced hydro-dynamic modelling software in the next stage of the application process. This report does not do that. The writer of the report actually recognises this fact in section 11, p5 where he states “The writer is not able to comment on whether such increased turnover is likely to have a negative or positive impact in relation to the ecological value of the deposits”. Everything in the report is speculation, and opinion and nothing that could be relied on should this opinion be proved to be incorrect. The Forth has a complex series of currents and counter currents which need to be modelled before the impact of a substantial alteration of the river bed can be determined. The writer suggests that, in his opinion, the presence of rock between Limekilns and the proposed development site will prevent any loss of foreshore in Limekilns. However, the evidence of history is against this opinion. This is proven by the several hundred meters of gabions erected as a direct result of the loss of foreshore and damage to the previously existing sea wall which followed the previous dredging. It is of vital importance that the impact of dredging 600,000m3 of material to form the navigable channel, and the continual maintenance required throughout the port’s operation, is accurately modelled and understood. Furthermore, it is important that the liability for any damage to existing structures in the vicinity is established and proper measures be put in place to ensure that Babcock repair and reinforce any such coastal structures which are effected by their dredging. This cannot be determined on opinion alone.
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Published on Jul 3, 2011