Sewage dumping in Wychavon reaches 12,612 hours in 2023

12 Jun 2024
Liz with Dan by river

The analysis is based on official data from the Environment Agency, compiled by the House of Commons Library for the Liberal Democrats. It shows sewage was dumped into local rivers on 1,619 separate occasions in 2023. 

The data shows that since 2022 there has been a 4% increase in the number of occasions spills have occurred and a huge 25% increase in the number of hours the sewage has been flowing into our rivers.

Sewage was dumped into England’s rivers over 460,000 times for a total of over 3.6 million hours in 2023.

The Liberal Democrats have led the way in campaigning against sewage dumping for years. The party is calling for strict measures including replacing Ofwat with a tougher regulator, a ban on bonuses for water company bosses whose firms have dumped sewage into waterways and the declaration of a national environmental emergency.

And last week Conservative MPs including West Worcestershire’s Harriett Baldwin and Droitwich and Evesham’s Nigel Huddleston voted against a new law which would have seen water companies in court for sewage spills. The new law, opposed by Conservative MPs, would have created criminal offences for failing to meet pollution performance commitment levels, ensuring the polluting firms would go to court and face punishments including fines.

Even the Environment Agency has previously called on water company Chief Executives and board members to face criminal charges, including court imposed fines. Despite cross-party support for the amendment, over 250 Conservative MPs voted against it.

Wychavon Liberal Democrat Group Leader Dan Boatright-Greene said:

“It is disgusting that Severn Trent continues to pump sewage into our waterways. The sewage scandal has worsened under the Conservative government’s watch.

“On doorstep after doorstep, people in Worcestershire tell me how furious they are that sewage had been pumped into their rivers and waterways - they want to send this Conservative government a message. 

“With thousands of houses being built, adding to the pressures on our waterways, we need laws that will end the sewage scandal. The Liberal Democrats will continue to campaign against this national scandal that has been allowed to take hold while the Conservative Government has sat on its hands and looked the other way.”

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