East Suffolk FOI – North Beach Oil Deposits

I have made a couple of posts about the oil deposits on Lowestoft North Beach which have been exposed due to erosion1,2.

Despite claims in the press and to local residents East Suffolk Council now claim that they do not have any information about the extent of the oil deposits, have not carried out any analysis of potential risks and have not said how they will monitor exposure of the oil deposits.

I requested some information from East Suffolk Council which they took as a Freedom of Information Request.

They said that they did not have any information in response to my questions which were:

  1.  Is the extent, position and the amount of oil known. Are there any maps available of where the oil was moved to when the incident was initially dealt with.
  2. Is all the oil now mixed with sand and gravel. Is there any evidence that the oil may disperse in large sticky clumps which may endanger birds and other wildlife through fouling.
  3. What are the chemicals within the oil that are of most concern if dispersed into the environment e.g. aromatics. Has there been any analysis done on the current chemical composition of the oil.

This directly contradicts statements made to the press3,4 and local residents concerning the issue.

Although they say that they are “currently reviewing the coast from Corton
and Gunton” they have not responded to the request about how the site will be monitored or when and how their current strategy will be reviewed.

I am currently contacting East Suffolk Council to find out if they are really so ignorant about the oil deposits or if they are in breach of the Freedom of Information Act 20005.


1 Lowestoft North Beach Oil Deposits: Council Response

2 Lowestoft North Beach Oil Deposits: Further Information

3 Removing oil from beach would ‘accelerate erosion’. Lowestoft Journal, 8 January 2021 (https://www.lowestoftjournal.co.uk/news/local-council/no-plans-to-clear-oil-lowestoft-suffolk-6891062)

4 Eleni V tanker leak: Oil on Suffolk beach ‘not an environmental threat’, BBC, 24 February 2021 (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-suffolk-56184718)

5 Freedom of Information Act 2000, (https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/36/contents)

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One Response to “East Suffolk FOI – North Beach Oil Deposits”

  • Pete says:

    I have requested that the council carries out an Internal Review of this request.


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