I just found this on Twitter:
I firmly believe that the dumping of raw sewage into Britain's waterways and seas is a bigger election issue than the polls currently indicate and could sink the Tories.
— Samuel Miller (@Hephaestus7) April 23, 2023
The BBC seems to agree:
Two weeks before voters in parts of England and in Northern Ireland go to the polls to choose new councillors, those in office are swimming against a tide of public anger at water companies dumping untreated, raw sewage.
Most waste water travels to sewage works to be treated but under “exceptional circumstances”, companies are allowed to pump the excess into the sea and rivers to prevent homes and roads being flooded with it.
However, EA figures show this is not occasional. Last year, sewage was pumped into England’s waterways for a total of 1.75 million hours – 825 times a day on average.
Conservative MPs and Tory-run councils in rural and coastal communities have felt the ire of people who have encountered evidence of sewage while out with their children, walking their dogs, or swimming.
Beaches by holiday resorts have repeatedly been contaminated and last September, people were advised not to swim at six beaches in Sussex when sewage was released into the sea.
Anger has also been stoked on social media since left-wing site EvolvePolitics listed 265 Conservative MPs who voted “to allow” water companies to carry on dumping sewage – blocking a Labour amendment to the Environment Bill which would have placed a legal duty on firms to phase out the practice.
These days, storm overflow and sewage figures are perhaps as closely watched as GDP and NHS waiting lists at the headquarters of the UK’s political parties – and the issue looks set to roll on into the next general election campaign.
Very well, then. I shall continue publishing articles about it that highlight what’s going on.
Here’s something you should know, for example:
Wessex Water bosses get bonuses for "enhancing the environment"
In last 3 years spent 518,250 hours dumping sewage in the enviro. Leak 61.4Ml/d from their pipes and EA estimate they over abstract local talk streams by about 56Ml/d. Some enhancement.https://t.co/OuwRCb2HvD
— Feargal Sharkey (@Feargal_Sharkey) April 23, 2023
Dear @stwater in the attached article you claim that "Severn Trent currently accounts for 16 per cent of reasons rivers in the Midlands not achieving good ecological status".
Please provide me with a copy of the data upon which that claim is based.https://t.co/wYt0pTiQ3i
— Feargal Sharkey (@Feargal_Sharkey) April 24, 2023
There will be more – much more – sewage to follow.
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