Proposals to construct a coastal defence to protect gas pipelines in Barrow-in-Furness have received an update from the council.

The proposed scheme to build a protective rock barrier on the west coast of Walney Island from Spirit Energy Production UK to prevent further erosion of the cliff face where a gas pipeline makes landfall has received an update from Westmorland and Furness Council.

The company wants to install the coastal defence on the land at South End Farm.

The applicant had requested the council to provide a “screening opinion” to deem whether an Environmental Impact Assessment is necessary for the proposals.

If screening identifies significant environmental effects an environmental impact assessment is necessary.

Westmorland and Furness Council found at this point in time an environmental impact assessment was not necessary.

A letter from the council stated: “Having regard to the current nature, scale and extent of the site and the likely potential impacts of the re-instating and enhancing the coastal sea defences to protect the gas related infrastructure, together with information supplied in the Screening Request, it is the opinion of the local planning authority that it is unlikely the proposed development would result in significant environmental impacts at this time.

“The proposed development is not considered to be EIA Development. This determination is made without prejudice to any decision by the local planning authority or any future planning application and should material circumstances change in the meantime this determination will be reviewed.”

According to the applicant the placement of armour rock is the most effective way of protecting the cliff.

In the Environmental Impact Screening Report by the applicant, it states: “The proposed scheme for rock placement is required to provide protection against further erosion of the cliff face and ensure the ongoing safety of the 24” gas pipeline and the associated 3” methanol where they make landfall. Placement of armour rock was determined as the most effective means of providing long term protection against further erosion of the cliff affecting pipelines at the point of landfall.”

The report also states that it is expected that a planning application will be submitted in due course for the proposed scheme.