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Letter: Oil and coral

Sir: Your report "Rare coral discovered clinging to North Sea oil rigs" (9 December) is based on research by oil industry scientists.

It is not the individual coral species that are threatened - the coral Lophelia pertusa is common and widespread in UK waters. It is the large deep-water Lophelia reefs, formed over hundreds of years and supporting hundreds of other species, that are at risk. These reefs, found in the Atlantic Frontier to the north-west of Britain, are endangered by new oil exploration wells in the area.

The report from these oil consultants is a blatant, albeit weak, attempt to cloud these two issues.


Campaign Director

Greenpeace UK

London N1