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Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009

Sections 69 and 70: Determination of applications; Inquiries

239.When determining an application for a marine licence the licensing authority must have regard to the need to protect the environment; the need to protect human health; the need to prevent interference with legitimate uses of the sea; and such other matters as the authority thinks relevant.

240.The reference to the “environment” includes the local and global environment; the natural environment; and, by virtue of section 115(2), any site of historic or archaeological interest. The natural environment may include the physical, chemical and biological state of the sea, the sea-bed and the sea-shore, and the ecosystems within it, or those that are directly affected by an activity, whether within the marine licensing area or otherwise.

241.Legitimate uses of the sea include (but are not limited to): navigation (including taking any steps for the purpose of navigational safety); fishing; mineral extraction; and amenity use.

242.During its assessment of an application the licensing authority may actively seek views and comments from expert bodies on matters where they have expertise relevant to the application. It must also take into account any comments it receives from other interested parties. The licensing authority may hold an inquiry in connection with the determination of the application.

243.A licensing authority may set out further details in regulations as regards the procedure for applications and how it grants them.

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