Coastal erosion progress in parliament

COASTAL policy was up for disucssion on Tuesday when Great Yarmouth’s MP Brandon Lewis chaired the Coastal Erosion All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG).

At the meeting, DEFRA Minister Richard Benyon appeared as guest speaker to talk about the government’s approach to coastal policy.

He spoke about the funding utlined for flood and coastal erosion management, and pledges to spend �2.1 billion on protecting homes in coastal regions over the next four years.

The minister also highlighted the importance of the role of the solidarity fund in coastal policy as a safeguard for local communities in immediate danger.

Mr Lewis said: “I am very pleased with what came from this meeting; a big step forward has been made in funding for coastal erosion.

“It is clear Richard Benyon is committed to ensuring the �2.1 billion government has outlined for flood and coastal management is used to directly address the problems we have on our shorelines.

“This meeting follows one Norman Lamb and I attended last week with minister for decentralisation, Greg Clark, who gave his backing for a plan to provide extra funds for managing the coastline in Norfolk and is a massive step in allowing coastal communities to take the lead in defending their area in the way they feel is best.”

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Also discussed was the localism bill was also raised and supported by the minister.

Mr Lewis added: “The Localism Bill which is being debated at the moment is also key to how coastal policy is managed.

“The freedom this Bill allows will enable local authorities to apply for solidarity funding and open up additional opportunities to protect their coastline.”