News Roundup – England’s most polluted village, water company fined, and a controversial incinerator build
This week’s news roundup shares what you need to know about a £1.5 million sewage fine, approved proposals for a controversial waste incinerator, and air quality improvement plans for the most polluted village in England.
Severn Trent Water fined £1.5 million in sewage discharge case
Severn Trent Water have been charged in relation to illegal sewage discharge from four treatment works in Worcestershire. Around 360,000 litres of raw sewage was released into the nearby Broadway Brook.
The court heard a number of allegations including failure to respond to alarms warning of a blockage, failure to adequately manage sewage sludge, and failure to adequately manage a situation when a piece of equipment failed.
Exposure to sewage water can cause stomach upset, infections, and even diseases like hepatitis and E coli.
Although the water we drink is cleaned before it reaches our taps – and legal limits for pollutants in tap water are extremely strict in the UK – each year most water suppliers record worrying test failures.
To find out more about your tap water, use our free tool to check the water quality in your area.
Controversial Edmonton incinerator gets the go-ahead
London authorities have approved plans to replace an ageing incinerator due to reach the end of its life. The new incinerator will handle waste collected by seven councils including Camden and Hackney.
Geraint Davies – chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Air Pollution – said incinerators “give rise to ultrafine particulates which are the most dangerous to human health”.
Concerned about the number of pollutants in your air? You can check the air quality in your area with our free tool.
Air quality plan for England’s most polluted village
Chideock, West Dorset, was last year found to have the highest levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in England, worse than areas in cities such as London, Sheffield and Doncaster. Now, local authorities want to implement an air quality plan to tackle staggering rates of pollution.
Some measures, such as reduced speed limits, are already in action, as the majority of NO2 air pollution is caused by road traffic. However, the new proposals take an infrastructural approach –rejecting planning permission in cases where traffic is expected to increase, for example.
Exposure to NO2 can irritate the airways, aggravate respiratory diseases, and cause symptoms such as coughing and wheezing. Long exposure has been linked to the development of asthma.
Investing in an air purifier can reduce pollutants significantly within the home, helping you to breathe cleaner, safer air.