Tories agree to tackle sewage discharges – because they think it allowed them to humiliate Labour

Flushed out: the Tories have not only agreed to carry out impact assessments on the effects of dumping raw sewage into UK waterways, but they must also set targets for such dumping to be reduced, and introduce fines against privatised water companies that fail to do so, or fail to properly monitor such discharges.

Don’t be discouraged by the Tory carping; this is a victory for anyone who is concerned about raw sewage being dumped into UK waterways.

Labour used an Opposition Day debate in the House of Commons to put forward a motion calling on the government to

  • Set a target for the reduction of sewage discharges
  • Provide for financial penalties in relation to sewage discharges and breaches of monitoring requirements, and
  • Carry out an impact assessment of sewage discharges

The motion also included a provision that would have given the Opposition the ability to take control of the Commons order paper in future and introduce legislation of its own.

Now, why would it do that? It doesn’t have any specific relevance to the sewage issue, as far as This Writer can see.

The Conservatives leaped on what they saw as an opportunity to humiliate Labour, with an amendment that removed the fourth part of the motion but supported the first three.

Because the amendment only deleted words from the motion, Parliamentary procedure meant it would be the first aspect on which MPs would vote – and the Tories’ Parliamentary majority meant it was passed by 290 votes to 188 against.

They then forced a vote on the amended motion. Labour MPs were ordered to abstain on it, because the Tories had amended it in their favour.

Had they, though? Had they really? It still demanded all the measures on sewage that Labour wanted.

And I don’t think anybody in the Labour leadership believed the Tories would allow them to introduce their own legislation.

The amended motion passed with 286 Tory votes – so the Tories pushed through the changes that Labour had demanded.

That means that the Tories are now obliged to

  • Set a target for the reduction of sewage discharges
  • Provide for financial penalties in relation to sewage discharges and breaches of monitoring requirements, and
  • Carry out an impact assessment of sewage discharges

that they weren’t willing to do before.

And they’re saying they humiliated Labour?

Well, here’s a thing:

Those of us who are concerned about water pollution don’t care.

The changes have been supported – by the Tories who originally opposed them.

So who has been humiliated, really?


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3 thoughts on “Tories agree to tackle sewage discharges – because they think it allowed them to humiliate Labour

  1. Car on Choates

    How in this Country have we allowed sewage to pollute the water rivers and seas? It is disgusting. Future generations will be in disbelief. For a 3rd world so called developed country we have regressed. We all have to take ownership of this problem as it is man made. We are polluting our world. Water needs to be Nationalised.

  2. flttymartyn

    I don’t believe anything that comes out of Sunak’s tory criminal cartel, i don’t believe a word that comes out of Starmer’s fake labour, tory party either!

  3. Hecuba

    ‘Set a target for the reduction of sewage discharges
    Provide for financial penalties in relation to sewage discharges and breaches of monitoring requirements, and
    Carry out an impact assessment of sewage discharges’ Sounds fine but deeds not empty words are what is required.

    So I predict the fascist tories will set a target to be met in 2150 – in other words a meaningless target figure because they believe private water companies only exist to make profits by polluting our public rivers and waterways!

    Financial penalities??? Sure I predict fascist tories will say well £10,000 fine is okay because it is peanuts to the greedy private water company boys.

    Impact assessment?? Sure when in 2180 perhaps because again fascist tories will weasel out of this and ensure our rivers and waterways remain polluted!

Comments are closed.