Activists take Water Regulator to Court over Sewage

The London Economic reports: Campaigners have accused Ofwat, the England and Wales water regulator, of unlawfully failing to stop discharging raw sewage into rivers.

In documents filed to the high court, Dr Ruth Tingay – the group’s director – said: “We are particularly concerned that a continued lack of action on Ofwat’s part will lead to a collapse in biodiversity, both within rivers and coastal waters, and, as a knock-on effect, in the areas surrounding those waters. This will be disastrous for nature conservation generally and wildlife in particular.”

The legal action is supported by investigations which used environmental information requests and freedom of information laws to reveal that Ofwat takes no active steps to monitor and enforce its legal duty to stop sewage discharges.

The campaigners say the consequences of raw sewage discharge into waterways are potentially severe, with those whose hobby or profession brings them into contact with infected water – such as surfers, rowers, anglers and wild swimmers – at risk.