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Campaigners to clean up west country beaches

This weekend, hundreds of volunteers will scour the region's coastline looking for litter and other debris washed up on the shore.

It's part of a campaign by the pressure group Surfers Against Sewage. It warns that, although our beaches look clean at first glance, they can be strewn with plastic and other debris that threaten marine habitats.

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  1. Duncan Sleightholme
  2. West Country (W)

Marine Conservation Zones Petition Handed to Government

Environmental groups from the West Country have criticised the government over plans to limit the number of areas where marine life is protected. Today a framed copy of a petition with quarter of a million signatures was handed in to Parliament by wildlife groups from across the country.

It asks Ministers to create more marine conservation areas around our coasts. Only a quarter of those proposed will be recognised this year. Environment Minister Richard Benyon says more zones may be added later, and that the government is starting with those areas that have the strongest case.

LATEST REPORT: Save Stowey Quarry campaign

Campaigners are waiting to hear if they've won their fight to prevent asbestos being dumped in Stowey Quarry near Chew Valley. A decision is due over plans for the site, which have been met with strong opposition. Local people say it could contaminate the area's water supply.

Our reporter Richard Payne sent us this report from the site

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Fears natural regional lanscapes could be lost

There's no doubt that the Westcountry has some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world. And when you know what you're looking for you can see clues which point to how people lived centuries ago.

In Roman times, the people of Somerset, Dorset and Gloucestershire lived in large villages and showed off their wealth with palatial villas. West of the Blackdown Hills in Devon and Cornwall they lived in smaller hamlets with a far less lavish lifestyle.

The evidence remains in the shape of the land today, but there's fears that these regional differences could be lost. Bob Cruwys reports.

Controversial waste incinerator gets go ahead in Glos

A contract for a controversial waste incinerator has been given the go ahead by Gloucestershire County Council. Company Urbaser Balfour Beatty has been awarded the contract to build the facility at Javelin Park near Harsfield in Gloucester.

But planning permission has yet to be granted for the incinerator which has been met with protests from local people.

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