Posts Tagged ‘water quality’
The ACA supports the SAS campaign to clean our seas and estuaries of sewage-related materials. The following message was received from SAS on 23rd May 2016:-
Today, we’re taking your support for the Sewage Free Seas campaign to Westminster with us to be presented to the Environment Agency at our All Party Parliamentary Group. Your support joins 13,000 fellow ocean enthusiasts, surfers, water users and environmentalists calling for Sewage Free Seas. This huge response, in just six weeks, shows just how concerned coastal communities are about sewage pollution at our beaches.
We will make the case for Sewage Free Seas on behalf of you and all our supporters, calling for the Environment Agency and water companies to stop sewage pollution ruining some of the nation’s best beaches.
The meeting will bring together Members of Parliament to hear evidence from speakers from the European Centre for the Environment & Human Health, surf industry leaders, Surfing GB, the shellfish industry, the Marine Conservation Society and Leah. Leah is a young surfer who fell seriously ill after surfing at her favourite spot whilst a sewer overflow, hidden upstream, discharged untreated human sewage into the sea.
We rely on the support of our members to enable us to campaign for Sewage Free Seas at the highest level. Supporting Surfers Against Sewage with a regular donation is the best way you can help us achieve our long term vision of a clean, safe and protected ocean environment. Please join us today, for just £2 a month.
We’ll email you again after the All Party Parliamentary Group to let you know the outcomes and what that means for protecting your health and our special beaches.
Thanks again for your support
The notes from the most recent meeting of the Devon Avon (Water Quality) Group or DAG have been added to the appropriate page in the ECOLOGY section. Amongst other things, it will be seen that SWW’s programme of water releases from the Avon dam, for fisheries purposes, will be continuing during 2016 along with some electro-fishing and gravel augmentation work (also funded by SWW) as an experiment to promote fish spawning in the upper reaches of the river.
The Plymouth University/ Westcountry Rivers Trust report on gravel augmentation formed part of the South Hams Rivers Improvement Project to restore the Avon to a state akin to that which existed before the construction of the Avon Dam. The report may be found on the Research/ Research reports page.
Nicholas Johnston, the new owner of the Bantham Estate, has expressed his support for the long-maintained view of the ACA that the 10 permitted releases of raw sewage into the Avon from the Aveton Gifford sewage treatment works after heavy rainfall should be stopped. At present, the releases are made without any warning to the public despite the increased recreational use of the river. For the full story, see this link -
Bathers and watercraft users cannot be protected from microbiological hazards in the upper Avon estuary under the Bathing Waters Directive. The Environment Agency does not monitor recreational waters for microbes unless they are designated as Bathing Waters. The regular bather numbers in the upper Avon estuary are too low to justify designation under the Bathing Waters Directive, we have been told. Users of watercraft of various types are excluded from the count.
An alternative approach could be to post warning signs about possible pollution risks so that recreational river users can be made aware of the possible microbiological hazard. To date, Aveton Gifford Parish Council has resisted such a move and South West Water has not cooperated in providing information to the public about the occurrence and timing of the 10 permitted combined sewer overflows (CSO) from the sewage works at Aveton Gifford.
South West Water is taking action to reduce domestic sewer overflows onto local roads and streams running into the upper Avon estuary by separating foul water from rain water (see link below) but the CSO will continue for the foreseeable future. So BEWARE!