Plans favour Welsh shipping
I SHARE Dr Jon Rogers' worry about the probable damage to Avonmouth by the plan for a Severn Barrage.
In addition to the overwhelming environmental objections to any barrage, there are sound commercial objections to this scheme. During the many years it will take to build a barrage it will use power, not produce it. Smaller alternatives such as tidal reefs, fences and lagoons will do less environmental damage and will produce power much sooner. Also, experience in building the first of these will help us improve later schemes.
Furthermore, the proposed barrage scheme is clearly designed to favour shipping on the Welsh side of the Severn. I have always supposed that the most vociferous advocate of this scheme, Peter Hain, MP for Neath, has had this in mind.
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I TOTALLY refute Mayoral candidate Jon Rogers' claims that the barrage would threaten Avonmouth docks.
This is political point scoring just weeks before the election.
The barrage proposals make full allowance for the same size ships as currently use the port.
We do not believe that there will be siltation as the proposal is for power to be generated by low head turbines on both the ebb and the flood.
The intention is that all ports within the barrage, ie. Cardiff, Newport and Avonmouth, will retain their existing capabilities.
Far from endangering employment it will produce tens of thousands of jobs on the West-Country side of the barrage in addition to those currently dependent on Bristol port.
Furthermore, it will create skills, both during construction and in the long term, for South West England and south Wales.
It will provide energy security, cement the whole region's growing profile in renewables and reduce consumer bills in the long term.
MP for Neath