Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Report by British Trust for Ornithology highlights scale of the issue
The proposal to build an airport on the Isle of Grain would cause a significant loss of coastal wetland habitat, according to a report published by the British Trust of Ornithology (BTO).
This would largely be within the Thames Estuary and Marshes Special Protection Area (SPA), but would also affect the Medway Estuary and Marshes.
Because these areas support more than 140,000 waterbirds, they are protected under international law.
Development at these sites would have significant negative impactson the bird populations that live there.
This would occur due to habitat loss within the footprint of the airport and disturbance or habitat change affecting other areas near the airport.
Over 21,000 waterbirds currently use the area proposed for development, which represents around 25% of the current total bird population on the two affected SPAs, and 37% of the current bird population on the Thames Estuary and Marshes SPA.