Benyon letter calls for more CSO monitoring by 2020
Defra has published a letter urging the UK water and sewerage companies' (WaSCs) to introduce monitoring for the "vast majority" of combined sewer overflows (CSOs) by 2020. The letter, to WaSC chief executives, was written on July 18, 2013 by then water minister Richard Benyon and has been published now under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIRs).
In the letter, Benyon outlined concerns that discharges from "are becoming a reputational issue... not dissimilar to leakage from supply a few years ago". He wrote: "They [CSOs] will continue to represent a legitimate safety valve when systems become overwhelmed by exceptional circumstances.
Benyon acknowledged that the industry had done a lot and made considerable investment to improve the performance of CSOs but said their management and operation remains a regular cause for concern for both water users and the wider public.
"...I would agree with many customers and communities that a water company understanding where its CSO assets are and how they are performing is a basic element of sound sewerage management," he said.
Benyon continued: "Looking forward, however, I believe more needs to be done. We know that the pressure on CSOs is likely to increase. Monitoring the levels of discharges also makes an important contribution to ensuring that sewerage systems are compliant with relevant legislation."
He said consistency, reliability and transparency were very important in respect of CSO monitoring, not only to individual companies but "to the country's collective position. Therefore we feel this is sufficiently important that we intend to include monitoring of CSOs in the water discharge permitting regime."
Benyon continued: "I understand that the industry is developing a long term approach, a road map, setting out how it intends to address the challenges presented by CSOs. Each company should set out its own objectives and trajectory for dealing with high frequency CSO discharges, responding to existing monitoring data as well as that derived from the expansion of monitoring through to 2020."
- Dredging gets underway in Somerset Levels, says EA Dredging of one of the major rivers in the Somerset Moors and Levels will start today, the Environment Agency (EA) has... Read More >
- Severn Trent identifies areas for improvement Severn Trent has highlighted three areas ─ sewer blockages, water quality at treatment works and supply... Read More >
- Ofwat investigation into Anglian's pricing to 'Fairfield' continues Ofwat has issued a Supplementary Statement of Objections as part of its continuing investigation into whether Anglian... Read More >
- Round Table: Digital Transformation and Operational Efficiency A digital transformation is taking place in the UK water sector, but the process is more about incremental steps than the... Read More >
- WWT presents Smart Water Networks conference 2018 With PR19 on the horizon and growing pressure on water companies to do more with less, smart systems and technology are... Read More >
- Data science - putting it all together It's only when different data sources are pooled and cross-correlated that the full power of IoT analytics and artificial... Read More >
- Comment: The Rise of the Digital Engineer As data gathering and analytics tools proliferate across water companies' operations, systems integration -... Read More >
- Top Tips for... cyber security The threat of Cybercrime to the water industry, just as with all other major sectors within the UK economy, is increasing... Read More >