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Letter: Fighting for cleaner rivers

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SIR – Some weeks ago your newspaper highlighted the pollution of raw sewage in the Beaulieu River from the Lyndhurst sewage works after heavy rain (A&T, 11th September).

What many people will find strange is that all sewage plants in this country are legally allow to release raw sewage with associated chemicals into our river systems during heavy rainfall.

Many of these sewage releases go undetected and end up in our seas and estuaries. As it is legal, this practice may have become a normal operational procedure.

On 15th January 2021 parliament will hear the second reading of Philip Dunne MP’s private members bill, the Sewage (Inland Water) Bill. This bill could help stop this pollution of our rivers.

Unfortunately, private members bills usually fail if they are not backed by the government.

If any of your readers think that we should have cleaner rivers and seas, then I would urge them to consider writing to George Eustice, who is our secretary of state for the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, to ask him to support this bill.

I think a letter carries more weight than an email because it takes a little more effort to write and send. I have received a very encouraging letter from my MP who has added his name to the growing list of supporting MPs. He believes “the bill is sound and long-overdue”.

If this bill fails it will, in my opinion, be because of lack of knowledge and people thinking that they can’t make a difference.

If we are to have a quiet Christmas this year why not write a letter and help clean up our rivers?

Peter Frost

Vice-president, Friends of the New Forest

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