Did you know raw human sewage is still regularly released into the rivers of England & Wales? The problem is when sewers are combined with rainwater drains. In normal weather conditions both rainwater and sewage go to the sewage treatment works, however during extremely heavy rainfall the sewage treatment works cannot cope with the amount of sewage to be treated. To stop the sewage overflowing into peoples homes, sewers have an overflow into a nearby river. However, there are concerns these overflows are being used more regularly and not just during extreme weather. In 2019 overflows were releasing untreated sewage for 1.5 million hours across the UK.
Rt Hon Philip Dunne MP for Ludlow has recently published his Private Member’s Bill designed to tackle river pollution from untreated sewage and improve water quality.
The Sewage (Inland Waters) Bill places a duty on water companies to ensure that untreated sewage is not discharged into rivers and other inland waters. The Bill will require water companies to set out plans progressively to reduce their reliance on combined sewer overflows (CSOs). It proposes increasing levels of transparency, as firms will be mandated to report publicly not just on the frequency and extent of sewage discharges from CSOs and any other sewer catchment assets, but also on the impact on water quality as this is enabled by advances in technology.
The Sewage (inland waters) bill is due to be debated in parliament on the 13th of November.
Please ask your MP to support the #endsewagepollution & Support the bill.
Surfers against Sewage have made it very easy to contact your MP.