Dredging and disposal guidance
To keep ports, marinas and shipping routes open, it's sometimes necessary to dredge within estuaries or coastal waters. Dredging can also be required for new projects or expansions to current operations, for flood and coastal risk management, or to extract material for construction, flood risk or environmental benefits. Dredging can have direct and indirect environmental effects, the scale of which are linked to the size of the dredge and the environment which is being dredged.
Clearing the Waters
In partnership with the UK Major Ports Group and British Ports Association, we've produced a step-by-step guide to help regulators and operators understand and assess if their works comply with the Water Framework Directive when planning or regulating any marine dredging or disposal activities.
Clearing the Waters outlines the shared responsibilities we all have in making sure we improve and avoid any deterioration in the quality of our estuaries and coastal waters. If you are planning a dredge, please use this guidance to make sure it is compliant with the Water Framework Directive. Append your results to the licence application you submit to the appropriate regulator. This is usually the MMO, the statutory port or harbour authority. There are two processes depending on whether the activity is a maintenance activity or a new project:
Either of these processes may lead to the following processes:
The tables included in the above documents are also available in excel format:
Any questions on this process should be directed to our National Customer Contact Centre (NCCC) 03708 506 506
Ecological guidance for developers
Well-planned developments next to our estuaries can create better places to live and work. Estuary edges design guidance provides information on how to ensure biodiversity in these areas.
- Estuary edges - introduction (PDF, 827KB)
- Policy, legal and planning requirements (PDF, 4.5MB)
- Design considerations (PDF, 4MB)
- The designs (PDF, 466KB)
- The Bioengineered designs (PDF, 7MB)
- Biotechnically engineered designs (PDF, 2.5MB)
- Structurally engineered designs(PDF, 9MB)
- Aftercare and monitoring (PDF, 345KB)
- Further information (PDF, 400KB)