What is an Artificial Reef?

The Artificial Reef Society of Colombia describe an artificial reef as:

“By definition, an artificial reef is any structure placed by man in the marine environment. Properly prepared and strategically located they attract marine life of all kinds and provide easily accessible and safe locations for divers to enjoy”.

The diverse marine life along many coastlines has come under increased stress in recent years through over-fishing, ecological problems, and pollution. Artificial reefs can help by providing a new habitat. Typically placed on a sandy bottom, the new structure of an artificial reef provides a permanent structure for invertebrates to attach where there was none before. The artificial reef provides a solid surface for filter feeders to attach, and environment similar to natural reefs where entire self-sustaining food chains are created. Artificial reefs can actually create a source of minerals, such as iron, required for marine life to thrive.
…Our Aim…

We intend to purchase a decommissioned Royal Navy Frigate, Bring her to Plymouth for environment cleaning before towing her to the placement site (Whitsand Bay Cornwall) for Scuttling.  Where ?
The project team believe that Whitsand Bay Cornwall is the ideal location for the placement of an artificial reef.

….ARC latest News…..

ARC update as of 3 Jan 01:-

The license application which was submitted to MAFF (Ministry for Agriculture Fisheries and Foods) and DETR (Department of Environment Transport and the Regions) in early Sept 00 is still being processed. Maff have passed on the license application to the Environment Minister and his department. MAFF have assured ARC that the consultation process for allowing the project to be licensed is being debated at a high level within government. DETR are on a similar track and results should be made known to ARC sometime towards the end of this month .
Ex HMS Scylla is coming up for commercial tender in the next 4-8 weeks and DSA (Disposal Services Agency) have contacted us to arrange a visit to the Frigate (currently swinging around the buoy in Portsmouth). During the visit to the vessel ARC hopes to conduct an Environmental impact study in order that we can fully satisfy the license criterion if we are granted one.

ARC’s intention is to bring Scylla back to Plymouth for environmental cleaning. Power station Wharf near Laira bridge is the ideal spot to bring her alongside. ARC are currently in negotiation with Viridor Properties ltd (SW Water subsidiary company) who own the Wharf to gain permission for her to be moored alongside for a possible 10 months.


Simon Dartmon

Marine Biologist at World Wildlife Fund
Helping out sea creatures during my research into Marine Biology.

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Author: Simon Dartmon

Helping out sea creatures during my research into Marine Biology.

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