Sewage crisis on south Warwickshire's rivers deepens - The Leamington Observer

Sewage crisis on south Warwickshire's rivers deepens

Leamington Editorial 12th Apr, 2024   0

THE SEWAGE crisis on south Warwickshire’s rivers is deepening.

The amount of sewage dumped into the River Avon and River Leam has risen from over 6,000 hours in 2022 to more than 13,000 hours in 2023.

Figures from Top of the Poops show that the River Avon was polluted by sewage 1,130 times in 2023, which lasted 10,187 hours. This is the equivalent of sewage being dumped on average 3.1 times a day.

The statistics show that the River Leam was on the receiving end of 338 sewage dumps in 2023, lasting 3,521 hours. This means that sewage was dumped into the River Leam on average six and a half times a week.

Sewage in UK waterways featured heavily in national news recently after Thames boat racers from the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge were told not to enter the Thames after high rates of E-coli were found in the water and were warned not to swallow any splashed water.

The University of Oxford’s rowing coach said the pollution in the Thames was a ‘national disgrace’.

Nationally, over 3.6 million hours of sewage was dumped into rivers and seas in 2023, double what was dumped in 2022.

Local MP Matt Western has been vocal in his outrage at the sheer scale of sewage being dumped into local and national waterways.

In April 2023, the MP for Warwick and Leamington invited the then Secretary of State for the Environment, Thérèse Coffey, to visit the constituency and “don a cozzie” and see for herself the state of the local rivers. He said she never took him up on the offer.

On the latest figures, Mr Western said: “This is beyond disgraceful, over thirteen thousand hours of sewage dumped into our two local rivers. What should be there for people to enjoy, particularly as we approach warmer weather, have been turned into an open sewer.

“When we have a warm day, instead of looking forward to a day by the river, people are filled with dread about what may be in there. We’ve been let down for too long by the government and water companies by a complete lack of action on this sewage scandal. We deserve so much better.

“I will continue to demand and repeat my calls that our rivers are there for us to enjoy, not to be used as an open sewer.”


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