Marine Environment

As a Statutory Harbour Authority we take our environmental duties and responsibilities seriously

Water sampling taking place within the statutory harbour limits
Survey & Plough Dredger 'Graham Robertson'

The importance of the coastal and marine environment of the Severn Estuary is recognised in its designation under international, European and national law.  The Severn Estuary is one of the largest estuaries in the UK, with the third highest tidal range in the world.  Its extensive mudflats, saltmarshes and sandbank habitats support internationally important populations of over wintering migratory birds and its waters are home to over 100 different species of fish.  

We take account of these environmentally sensitive features in all our functions and we manage our operations in a responsible and sustainable manner.  EC Nature Conservation Designations in the vicinity of the Port of Bristol can be seen here.

The Bristol Port Company maintains an Oil Spill Contingency Plan in accordance with the Merchant Shipping (OPPRC Convention) Regulations 1998.  The plan has been developed through consultation with local bodies and is approved by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.

The plan details the structured response to a pollution incident.

To support this the Port retains equipment and trained personnel on site ready to respond to any medium sized incident (Tier 2).

A series of periodic exercises ensures that the plan, personnel, communications and equipment levels are reviewed regularly.