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Climate warning

Welsh Water admits illegally spilling sewage for years

Welsh Water has admitted illegally spilling untreated sewage at dozens of treatment plants for years. The admission came after the BBC presented the water company with analysis of its own data. One of their worst performing plants is in Cardigan in west Wales. The company has been spilling untreated sewage there into an environmentally protected area near a rare dolphin habitat for at least a decade. Welsh Water says it is working to tackle the problems and does not dispute the analysis, which was shared with BBC News by mathematician and former University College London professor Peter Hammond from campaign group Windrush Against Sewage Pollution (WASP). Prof Hammond requested data on 11 Welsh treatment plants and found that 10 had been releasing untreated sewage at times when they should have been treating it. Cardigan was particularly bad, spilling for more than 200 days each year from 2019-2022. The data provided to Prof Hammond showed that Cardigan almost never treated the amount of sewage it was supposed to. According to its permit it has to treat 88 litres a second before spilling - but had illegally spilled untreated sewage for a cumulative total of 1,146 days from the start of 2018 to the end of May 2023. "This is the worst sewage works I've come across in terms of illegal discharges," he said.

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21 more agrees trigger contact with the recipient

  • Tabitha Kimani

    11 w

    They should be heavily penalized for endangering peoples lives.

    • Grace Njeri

      12 w

      Discharging sewage into rivers and seas should be lawfully illegal.

      • George Kariuki

        13 w

        This blatant disregard for environmental regulations and public health cannot be tolerated.

        • walter lungayi

          14 w

          This is concerning and highlights the need for better oversight and accountability in managing sewage treatment to protect the environment and public health.

          • winnie nguru

            14 w

            This is so wrong! What are they doing about it after admitting?

            • Sarah Chabane

              14 w

              Wow, that's unacceptable!

              • Princess

                14 w

                Transparency is crucial, and addressing such issues promptly is essential for environmental protection and public trust.

                • Kevin

                  14 w

                  This is very wrong and legal action should be taken against Welsh

                  • CHRIS NGATIA

                    14 w

                    This is so irresponsible and ignorant of them ..

                    • Joseph Githinji

                      14 w

                      This must now stop, admitting a mistake is one thing and correcting it is another. Welsh Water must now take responsibility and stop irresponsible spilling of sewage.

                      • Jane Wangui

                        14 w

                        @joseph_githinji Action against them should be taken.We cannot take such deeds lightly.

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