Talks to protect Bacton Gas Terminal Complex on north Norfolk coast from erosion

Bacton gas terminal from the air. Picture; MIKE PAGE

Bacton gas terminal from the air. Picture; MIKE PAGE - Credit: Archant

High-level talks are under way to protect one of Britain's main gas terminals on the Norfolk coast from cliff erosion.

Bacton gas terminal; picture by Adrian Judd; for EDP

Bacton gas terminal; picture by Adrian Judd; for EDP - Credit: Archant

Discussions between the Bacton Terminal Complex operators and North Norfolk District Council are taking place after the devastating December 5 tidal surge last year.

The event caused new cliff losses and concerns about erosion around the gas site were raised earlier this year with North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb and the district council.

Mr Lamb held a meeting at parliament between energy secretary Ed Davey, coastal minister Dan Rogerson and senior figures from the Environment Agency, the district council and gas terminal operators.

It was agreed the best way to protect the Bacton terminal was to link it to wider coastal erosion work so communities were not put at risk.

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The district council and terminal operators are carrying out an investigation ahead of a proposal to protect the gas site.

Mr Lamb said: 'I was determined to make sure that this meeting took place so that ministers could understand the need for local organisations to work together to protect the coastal communities alongside the Bacton terminal.

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'Dan Rogerson, the Lib Dem environment minister, very recently visited Walcott and really understands the challenges we face. I am pleased that we were able to agree a way forward, and I will continue to monitor progress closely over the coming months to make sure that we keep up the momentum.'

North Norfolk District Council's cabinet member for coast and environmental services, Angie Fitch-Tillett, said: 'Such an opportunity to jointly work with communities, private companies and central government is hugely positive and will provide the best opportunity for progress and a unified way forward.'

Chris Starkie, managing director of New Anglia LEP, said: 'Clearly Bacton is a vital piece of infrastructure importing a quarter of the UK's gas supply and supporting a large number of jobs on the site. We are, of course, aware of issues that came to light during last winter's tidal surge and we will work with North Norfolk District Council and other agencies to ensure the continued protection of the site.'

For the full story read tomorrow's EDP.

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