Recently we’ve seen signs on beaches warning people not to swim and flooding in Faversham with some pretty grim things in the water.
I put these concerns directly to the CEO of Southern Water, Ian McAulay, when we met at Faversham’s Wastewater Treatment Works on Friday 12 November.
I’ve helped secure £2 million of investment at the Treatment Works, which will be used to increase its capacity by 40 per cent – so there’s less likely to be a need to discharge in the event of storms. Southern Water are also setting up a Task Force for North Kent to reduce storm discharges.
Increasing water run-off from roads, driveways and fields means more action is needed to control these flows into the wastewater system. We need drainage that can cope with heavier downpours.
It’s clear that the measures set out in our new Environment Act are well timed, including the historic legal duty on water companies to reduce the impact of sewage discharges.
Southern Water also committed to working with KCC and local councillors to tackle the repeat flooding incidents in Faversham.
The meeting served its purpose in making sure Southern Water are focused on cleaning up our water locally. I will be keeping a close eye to see the commitments made turn into action.