May 16th, 2024.

Lewes Lib Dems release:

New figures analysing sewage dumped in Council areas have revealed that sewage was dumped into waterways in Lewes District for 17,644 hours in 2023. The analysis is based on official data from the Environment Agency, compiled by the House of Commons Library for the Liberal Democrats. It shows sewage was dumped into local rivers and coastlines on 1,512 separate occasions in 2023.

This is a 87% rise in the duration of sewage spills compared to the previous year, showing how the sewage scandal has worsened under the Conservative government’s watch.

Sewage was dumped into England’s rivers over 460,000 times for a total of over 3.6 million hours in 2023.

It comes as Lewes MP, Maria Caulfield, failed to vote on a Liberal Democrat amendment that would have made water company bosses criminally liable for sewage dumping.

The Liberal Democrats have led the way in campaigning against sewage dumping for years. The party is calling for strict measures including replacing Ofwat with a tougher regulator, a ban on bonuses for water company bosses whose firms have dumped sewage into waterways and the declaration of a national environmental emergency.

Liberal Democrat spokesperson for Lewes constituency, James MacCleary said: “It is disgusting that Southern Water pumped their filthy sewage into our waterways so many times last year. Every week there is raw, untreated sewage being pumped into the Ouse and the Cuckmere and straight into Seaford Bay.

“On doorstep after doorstep, people across our area tell me how furious they are that filthy sewage has been pumped into their rivers and waterways. They want action now. Instead, the local Conservative MP Maria Caulfield, can't even be bothered to turn up to vote on an amendment this week which would have made water company bosses criminally liable for sewage dumping.

“The Liberal Democrats have led the way for years in campaigning for tougher action. We want to see a tougher water regulator, an end to bonuses for polluting water company bosses and stronger protections for our local environment.

“Come the General Election, Liberal Democrats will be campaigning hard against this national scandal that has been allowed to take hold while the Conservative Government has sat on its hands and looked the other way.”
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