How Dirty Are Our Waterways?

Image from Jean-Marie at Pixabay

Concerned about water pollution?

Recently the Lib Dems in Wales undertook an analysis of statistics by Welsh Water of sewage dumping. The findings were shocking with Ceredigion, Preseli Pembrokeshire, and eastern Carmarthenshire all being in the top ten constituencies in the UK for doing this.

Pollution by sewage in Preseli Pembrokeshire occurred 5,003 times in 2022, lasting 45,902 hours, and Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire were not far behind with pollution by sewage occurring 3,563 times in 2022 – lasting 26,132 hours.

Shockingly, of all UK waterways, the River Teifi has the honour of being the ninth most sewage polluted, with sewage being dumped in the river for 11,801 hours last year.

Welsh Water has been asked what it is doing to reduce sewage dumping.

It says that it provides real-time spill information for key bathing waters to interested bodies, including Surfers Against Sewage and Rivers Trust and that its data for 2022 shows a 12 per cent reduction in the average number of storm releases per storm overflow compared with 2021. This went from from 43.5 to 38.3 with a 25 per cent reduction in total spill duration in 2022, from 80,7512 hours to 60,2987 hours.

A spokesperson has said: “While there has been a reduction, which in part is due to the investment work we are undertaking to reduce spills, the reduction has also been influenced by the dry weather we saw last year.

“The total removal of combined storm overflows from our system is unaffordable and would take decades and therefore is not an option, but what is in our control is the ability to target investment to CSOs [combined storm overflows] which have the biggest environmental impact.

“That is why we are investing significantly to improve CSOs with £140m being invested between 2020 and 2025 and a further £420m planned from 2025 to 2030.”

What do you think needs to be done?

Kitty Parsons

Kitty has forgotten how long she has been here now but she loves Pembrokeshire for its beauty and it's people. She spends her time searching out stories for, swimming in the sea , drawing and painting as Snorkelfish and eating cake. She says " has been an opportunity to celebrate this beautiful county and its people. Keep the stories coming. We love to hear from you."

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