Craig's Reef Will Catch Environmental Tide

The Journal (Newcastle, England), April 8, 2006 | Go to article overview

Craig's Reef Will Catch Environmental Tide


Byline: By Tony Henderson

Marine scientist Dr Craig Rose is taking the plunge with a venture aimed at bringing multiple benefits to the North-East coast.

Craig, who is managing director of S.E.A Consultants (Special Environmental & Archaeological Consultants) is planning an artificial reef off the region's shoreline.

After graduating in marine biology at Newcastle University, Craig studied the artificial reef which is being developed off the West Coast of Scotland at Loch Linnhe as part of his PhD.

Now he is seeking funding for a reef which would cost between pounds 1-pounds 3m and be sited around 100 metres off a spot on the North-East coastline.

Craig, 27, who lives in Gateshead, enjoys surfing and diving off the North Tyneside coast.

And he says that one of the functions of the reef would be to cater for surfers, divers and sports fishermen, which would further develop an emerging seafront visitor business sector.

Tynemouth has already hosted the O'Neill British Surfing Championships for three years.

Craig says: "Because of the way the reef would be structured, it would increase the number of surfing days, create better surfing waves and more of them."

The reef would also provide more interest for divers and fishermen through the concentration of marine life which it would attract.

There would also be benefits for commercial fishing as the reef became a refuge for crabs and lobsters, and a nursery for fish stocks.

It would protect the coastline from increased storm surges and predicted sea level rises associated with climate change.

"By creating marine habitats it could be used for educational and research purposes, as well as being good for coast tourism," says Craig. …

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