The barriers would form part of a Natural England-led project. The project aims to restore Hoveton Great Broad and Hudson’s Bay to a clear water, wildlife rich state by using natural restoration techniques.
The Environment Agency has launched a ‘minded-to’ public consultation today (16 August) on a flood risk activity permit application from Natural England. This permit is required to allow the installation of the permeable fish barriers.
Earlier this year, a public consultation was held to gather views on the permit application. All responses and application documents were considered and now the Environment Agency has reached a ‘minded-to’ decision to grant the permit.
An Environment Agency spokesperson said:
This minded-to consultation gives people the opportunity to view and provide any final comments on the draft permit and draft decision document.
We are keen to hear from anyone who wants to have their say on this proposal before we complete our final decision.
The project proposes to remove the majority of fish from the broad – a technique known as biomanipulation – which will allow water fleas to thrive. These water fleas would then feed on the algae, thereby cleaning the water.
The barriers would be in place for up to 10 years, preventing fish from entering the Broad while the ecology recovers. Once the barriers are removed, the fish will be able to access the restored broad once again.
Responses to the ‘minded-to’ consultation must be received by the Environment Agency by midnight on 13 September 2021.