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The Sussex Kelp Restoration Project (SKRP) is a collaboration of national and local organisations working on a pioneering project to restore the historic Sussex kelp beds that have declined by 96% since the late 1980s.  

Kelp is an essential habitat for marine life and commercial fish. The Sussex IFCA Nearshore Trawling Byelaw was passed in March 2021 to help safeguard these habitats by prohibiting the use of bottom towed gear (trawling) from over 300 km2 of seabed. However other factors, such as high levels of sediment, could also hinder the recovery of the kelp beds. Sedimentation is a natural process, but it can also be caused by human activity such as farming, dredging, trawling and urban development. In many parts of the world, increased levels of sedimentation and nutrient loading has been linked to the loss of kelp forests.

To support kelp recovery, Blue Marine Foundation, an SKRP partner, is reviewing the sources and impacts of sediment that might affect kelp growth as well as local fisheries, marine life and recreational activities.

As a Sussex sea user, we're very interested to hear your observations on changes in the type and level of sediment in our coastal waters, and any impacts you may have seen over the years. Your answers to this survey will inform a report and recommendations that will support the Sussex Kelp Restoration Project mission to restore historic kelp beds in Sussex.

Thank you for your time and your help today. This survey closes on 28th February 2022

Protecting your data

In addition to your observations, we will ask you for some personal information such as your name and email address. This is so we can contact you if needed and share our final report with you. You do not have to provide this information if you do not wish to.

Any personal data you provide will be securely stored by Blue Marine Foundation until December 2022. We will never sell or trade your data.  By filling out this form you agree that we will process your data in line with our privacy policy

If you have any questions or change your mind, contact Blue Marine Foundation’s Head of Operations on: info@bluemarinefoundation.com

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* 1. Please tell us your name (if you prefer to remain anonymous, leave this blank)

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* 2. What's the nearest town to where you live

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* 3. What marine activity/ies are you involved in? (Select all that apply)

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* 4. How often are you on or in the waters off the Sussex coast? (Select one)

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* 5. Were you aware that there used to be a large amount of kelp growing in Sussex's water but over 96% of kelp beds have disappeared since the late 1980s?

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* 6. Were you aware of the Sussex Nearshore Trawling Byelaw which aims to help the kelp and other seabed habitats to recover by prohibiting trawling in nearshore waters along the Sussex coast?

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* 7. Are you supportive of the Sussex Nearshore Trawling Byelaw aim?

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* 8. Have you noticed any changes in the amount of sediment in the coastal waters of Sussex? (Sediment can be particles of soil, grit, sand or other matter, that might settle on the seabed or turn the water cloudy).

  I've noticed a bit more  I've noticed a lot more  I've noticed less  I'm not aware of any changes
Sediment in the water
Sediment on the seabed
Sediment in rockpools

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* 9. When did you first observe changes in sediment? (Select one)

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* 10. Where did you see changes in sediment occur? If you know the coordinates please write them below, and list as many as you think are relevant.

You can look up the coordinates here using Google maps. Just zoom in on the map and click on the area you want to identify; then click on the coordinates in the small rectangular box that appears. Select, copy and paste the coordinates that appear on the left of the map into the Survey box; select another location and repeat these steps. Please use the decimal degrees format e.g. 50.628839, -2.420960

If you are not comfortable using coordinates, you can also give us a description of where you've seen sediment e.g.  in the water 1km out and 500m east of Worthing Pier.

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* 11. How would you describe the consistency of any increased or different sediment you have seen? (Select all that apply).

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* 12. Is there anything else about the sediment you've noticed?

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* 13. What do you think are the main sources of the sediment you've seen?  Please rank the following sources in terms of severity from 'not a source of sediment' to 'the largest source of sediment'.

  Not a source of sediment  A source of some sediment A source of a lot of sediment The largest source of sediment  Don't know
Land run-off
Sediment carried by rivers
Storm disturbance
Aggregate dredging
Dredge spoil dumping
Trawling for fish with bottom towed gear
Windfarm development
Other

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* 14. In the question above, if you selected 'other' as a source of sediment no matter how small, what source(s) of sediment have we missed?

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* 15. Do you have any more information or evidence to shed light on your answer to Q14?

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* 16. Are there any impacts on marine species or habitats, fisheries, recreational activities, or human health that you believe are directly related to any changes in sediment levels or types you have observed? Please provide details and any examples.

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* 17. Do you have any other observations or thoughts on the sources and impacts of sediment in Sussex coastal waters that you would like to share? 

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* 18. If you'd like a copy of the report produced from the survey, enter your email address here.

If you have any images or videos of the sediment you’ve observed, please email these to sam@bluemarinefoundation.com including any copyright restrictions or acknowledgement details. 

Thank you again for your valuable time and input.
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