Pirate FM News

Sand From Cornish Beaches Dumped at Landfill

beach walkers

Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 7:01am 20th January 2014

Pirate FM has learnt some sand swept off Cornwall's golden beaches in the storms is being dumped in landfill.

European rules mean any that ends up on roads is branded a pollution risk, even if it is only metres from where it came from.

Some has already been taken away at Porthtowan.

Local campaigner Jack O'Shea reckons it beggars belief.

He said: "Anything that is above 100mm or 4 inches would be OK, but anything below that would be viewed as contaminated and would have to be taken away.

"As is pointed out in all the surveys, there is a finite amount of sand in our coastal system. If it is contaminated it needs to be cleaned and brought back. But the chances of it truly being contamined are so rare it is verging on the ridiculous.

"In somewhere like Porthtowan, for instance, where all the water courses run straight down onto the road, into gullies or whatever and then into the stream, down onto the beach - the sand that lies on it is going to be no more contaminated than the waterways and the river that run down onto the beach. It doesn't make any sense."

Melissa Moore from the Marine Conservation Society told Pirate FM: "We encourage them to implement all directives and most of them on the environmental side we find extremely useful for conservation - but the way they are interpreting this one does seem a bit extreme.

"Sand is a really important habitat. It also provides a natural coastal defence. If you lose a lot of sand, particularly in front of a sea wall, that sea wall could be undercut and collapse in the future."

Cornwall Council confirmed the existence of the regulation but did not comment further.

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