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MP calls on Environment Agency to look again at dredging

February 6, 2014 2:30 PM

TF ruralSouth Lakes MP Tim Farron has backed a call by the Prime Minister for the Environment Agency to look again at dredging rivers, following the recent floods in Somerset.

At Prime Ministers Questions yesterday, David Cameron said: "I have said that we will see dredging on the Tone and the Parrett in the Somerset levels, because that will make a difference, but it is time for Natural England, the Environment Agency and the Departments to sit around a table and work out a new approach that will ensure that something that worked for decades and centuries is re-introduced again."

Tim has previously raised the issue of dredging rivers with Ministers, especially the River Sprint in Longsleddale and the River Kent, which the Government rejected on environmental grounds. But the Prime Ministers' announcement yesterday seems to signal a change of heart by the Government.

Tim said: "I welcome this change of position from the Government and I am now asking the Environment Agency to do the same. I think that dredging rivers, especially upstream, could make a difference for local residents. It is not the whole solution, but done together with other mitigation schemes like tree planting and flood defences, it will help to make a difference."