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Offshore Drilling: Bournemouth Bay

Question for Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

UIN 176197, tabled on 8 October 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what representations he has received from (a) Members of Parliament, (b) Dorset County Council, (c) Poole Borough Council, (d) Bournemouth Borough Council and (e) district councils in Dorset on the proposal by Corallian Engery Ltd to drill an appraisal well in the Colter Prospect in Bournemouth Bay.

Answered on

16 October 2018

Representations were received from my rt. Hon. Friends the Members for New Forest East, South Holland and The Deepings, and Bournemouth East; and my hon. Friends the Members for Bournemouth West, and Meon Valley. The concerns related, in particular, to the perceived sensitivity of the proposed well location, potential effects on tourism and leisure activities and also potential effects on local seahorse populations. Additional concerns cited related to the potential impact of a major oil spill and the policy of continued exploitation of fossil fuels.

A representation was received from Dorset County Council confirming that there was no objection in relation to landscape and seascape impacts, due to the short-term nature of the operations. Representations was also received from the Borough of Poole Council and Bournemouth Borough Council on concerns regarding the effects on tourism, the risk of a vessel collision with the drilling rig in poor weather or storm conditions, and potential impacts on water quality from operational marine discharges that could affect the area’s ‘Blue Flag’ beaches.

No representations were received from district councils in Dorset.