30 hectares smaller to be precise.
Approximately 16,000 tons of earth has been moved to form a 300m breach in the existing Thames flood defence at Mucking Flats in Essex. The breach allows a 30 hectare area of existing farmland to flood on the incoming tides which will eventually create a new area of mudflat linking to the existing area – an area which is very important for wildfowl.
The work has been carried out by Carillion plc on behalf of client DP World and is a key early part of the construction of the new port that is being built on the site of the old Shell oil refinery at Coryton. The new mudflat is compensation for areas of wildfowl habitat that are being lost in the process of building the new port.
The mudflat was created by excavating the existing farmland to reduce the level to that optimum for the creation of a mudflat. The material that was excavated was used to form a new Thames flood defence bund at the back of the area. Once the new floodbund was completed in June this year the existing could be breached and the area allowed to flood.