11 August 1995

Few farm links on new EA board

By Peter Bullen,

Political correspondent

ONLY TWO of the 13 board members of the powerful new Environ-ment Agency have direct links with agriculture.

Environment secretary John Gummer confirmed the boards membership on Tuesday. The chairman is Lord de Ramsey, former Country Landowners Associ-ation president, whose family company farms 2632ha (6500 acres) in Cambridgeshire.

Another former CLA president, John Norris, who farms 600ha (1482 acres) in Essex, is one of three board members appointed by farm minister Douglas Hogg.

The other two were Sir Richard George, chairman and managing director of Weetabix, and Dr Anne Powell, conservationist and chairman of the National Rivers Authoritys regional fisheries advisory committee.

Welsh secretary William Hague appointed Prof Ronald Edwards, former NRA board member and chairman of the Welsh regional advisory board.

Other board members are Peter Burnham, Imtiaz Farookhi, Nigel Haigh, Christopher Hampson, John Harman, Mrs Karen Morgan, Mrs Joan Wykes and Edward Gallagher.

From next April the Environ-ment Agency will take over the responsibilities of the National Rivers Authority, HM Inspector-ate of Pollution and the waste regulation functions of local authorities plus some of the Department of the Environments environmental protection functions.

Commenting on the appointments, Mr Gummer said the agency had a remit to protect or enhance the environment as part of the quest for sustainable development as Britain moved towards a new century. It needed people of exceptional calibre with wide ranging skills and broad vision. "We believe that those we have selected meet these needs," he added. &#42