There is a continuing demand for marine sand and gravel resources on the north- west European continental shelf. This demand is increasing as a result of sharpening environmental pressures on land aggregate extraction and rising demand for marine materials for coastal defence and reclamation. However, knowledge of offshore sand and gravel resources varies greatly across north-west Europe. Although much of the area has been geologically surveyed and maps are available showing the general distribution of seabed sediments, there are significant gaps in the coverage. Only the governments of the UK and the Netherlands produce estimates of the long-term demand for sand and gravel, and these two countries have also carried out the most advanced resource assessments. In other sectors of the North Sea data are far less comprehensive.This book reviews the state of information and practice concerning marine aggregate resources, identifies the principal holdings of information that are in the public domain and indicates their currency and completeness. It also sets out a number of recommendations that merit further investigation.PR68 will be of interest to all organisations involved in the marine sand and gravel industry in north-west Europe, including government planning and licensing bodies, dredging and construction companies, coastal defence authorities, coastal engineers and local area planning authorities.
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