§ Mr. Chris Smith
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many sites of special scientific interest have been renotified using the procedures contained in the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981; on how many of these sites owners or occupiers have carried out a potentially damaging operation without informing the National Conservancy Council; and if the National Conservancy Council has initiated proceedings against any of these owners or occupiers.
§ Mr. Waldegrave
I am advised by the Nature Conservancy Council that, as at 1 May, 881 sites of special scientific interest had been renotified under section 28 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. I understand that potentially damaging operations have been carried out on 17 of these sites without the NCC's knowledge. NCC are currently considering whether to institute proceedings against owners or occupiers: no such action has been taken to date.