Dispute over acidification maps puts Government under pressure

Nearly half of Britain's soils will still be receiving acid deposition in excess of damage thresholds in 2005, a report commissioned by Friends of the Earth (FoE) claims.1 The figure is six times the Government's estimates, and will increase pressure on the UK to agree further reductions in acid emissions. FoE has also used the report as a platform to object to the power generators' applications for integrated pollution control (IPC) authorisations.

FoE's report concerns "critical loads", which are the levels of acid deposition that an ecosystem can tolerate in the long term without sustaining damage. The concept is central to the Government's policy on acidification, and indeed has been promoted by the UK for several years as an alternative to emission controls based on best available technologies in international negotiations on acid rain.

The Department of the Environment's Cri

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