Yorkshire Water pledges £180m to reduce sewage pollution in rivers
And the company says more than 190 storm overflow areas in Yorkshire are earmarked for improvement and investment – some of which flow into York’s rivers.
Yorkshire Water said it plans to invest £180m over the next two years in reducing runoff from storm overflows.
The plan targets spills that occur most frequently or for the longest time as the company seeks to reduce the impact on water quality. More than 190 spillways, including some into the Rivers Ouse and Foss in York, are earmarked for investment under the plan.
Partly funded by shareholders, the investment comes in addition to £147m being spent under the company’s current five-year business plan and planned works between 2025 and 2030, which is the company’s largest environmental investment since privatisation .
Figures from the Environment Agency earlier this year showed that there were a total of 301,091 sewage accidents in the UK in 2022, an average of 824 per day.
Yorkshire Water CEO Nicola Shaw said: “There has been a lot of criticism and anger towards the water industry in recent months. I understand why people are angry – seeing sewage in our rivers and seas is not right.” . We should have a system that fits the 21st century. I am sorry on behalf of Yorkshire Water.
“We have not acted quickly enough to address the issue of storm spills into rivers. Although the number and duration of discharges from storm overflows in Yorkshire will decrease in 2022, we understand that they are more common than our customers would like and are committed to addressing this issue’ concern and doing our part to help river health.
“Tackling spills, which have been integrated into the system as a relief valve, is a priority for us, but it is also a significant task. In Yorkshire we have over 2,200 spills and we know that cleaning up entire Yorkshire is not a quick fix’ as it would mean both significant disruption and high costs for customers. Continued investment by our shareholders will help us address this issue.”
Works are being carried out on spillways that feed into all major rivers throughout the region.
The investment can be broken down into four different types of work, including increasing storage at Yorkshire Water’s wastewater treatment plants, preventing surface water from entering the sewers, reducing water entering the sewers and small changes to the operation of the treatment plants
Work in these areas will include the construction of additional storage tanks to hold more sewage and contain it so that it does not overflow.
Rainwater is diverted away from sewers and into rain barrels or SUDs. Water sources that should not be included in the network are removed. And the company will change the way it operates the broader sewage network and pumping stations, which could reduce the need for spills to spring into action.
https://www.yorkpress.co.uk/news/23531761.yorkshire-water-pledges-180m-reduce-sewage-spills-rivers/?ref=rss Yorkshire Water pledges £180m to reduce sewage pollution in rivers