Liberal Democrats call for clean waterways in Plymouth

8 Jun 2024

The Liberal Democrats are calling for protected status for rivers and marine areas in Plymouth after sewage was dumped over 5000 times in 2023. Sewage is being poured into our rivers and seas at an alarming rate, according to the Environment Agency. Data shows that South West Water discharged sewage in Plymouth waters over 5000 times. In Sutton and Devonport it was 1,956 times, in Moor View on 782 occasions and SW Devon had 2,430 spills. This is a staggering 35,000 hours across 2023.
This country needs a massive expansion of marine protected areas and a new Blue Flag status for rivers. This would set legally binding targets to prevent sewage dumping at those sites, making it safer for swimmers and wildlife. 
We support the work on a Blue Flag for Firestone Bay and the development of the Marine Park but it is clear this is only touches the tip of a deeply unpleasant sewage-berg that is not being tackled.
The Liberal Democrats have led the way in campaigning against sewage dumping nationally and will have the boldest manifesto on cleaning up our rivers and coastlines. We have announced plans to abolish Ofwat, introduce a new regulator with greater powers and ban bonuses for water company executives.
Plymouth’s precious rivers and coastlines have been destroyed after years of a Conservative government letting water firms get away with environmental vandalism.
Hugh Janes, Plymouth Liberal Democrat Chair said, “It is time to stop polluting and profiteering water firms. Conservative MPs have stood by whilst swimmers have become ill and wildlife killed by sewage discharges. This scandal must end now.”

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