SAS and EA team up on coastal catchment scheme
Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) and the Environment Agency (EA) are launching a joint Cleaner Coastal Catchment initiative for Ilfracombe in North Devon and Porth in Cornwall, where beaches are currently predicted to fail the Bathing Water Directive's (BWD) water quality standards.
The initiative aims to improve water quality by rolling out solutions across communities, businesses and organisations that specifically target protecting the sewerage network from fats, oils, grease and sanitary products; maximising sewerage capacity; protecting waterways from misconnections; reducing urban pollution; and reducing farming pollution.
The bespoke Cleaner Coastal Catchment website will collect individuals, business and organisation’s pledges, as communities commit to changing behaviour and implementing the necessary campaign solutions, said SAS. The pledges will help SAS measure how effective the project has been, and identify any areas that need additional attention.
The organisation hopes the catchment initiative will motivate coastal communities into action, ensuring both residential and business sectors are aware of the great social and economic value of their bathing water, whilst also fully understanding the risks and impacts of failing the BWD. Equally important is improving coastal communities catchment understanding. There are many potential sources of pollution across a catchment. Communities need to recognise they too can be a source of the problem. Only with this improved understanding will these coastal communities truly be motivated and effective at delivering the necessary actions to improve water quality.
Andy Leyman, Beach Champion for Wildersmouth, Ilfracombe said: "The Cleaner Costal Catchment initiative is a great way to get the local community involved to help improve bathing water quality at Porth and Wildersmouth, Ilfracombe. This joint project with SAS will help us to reach more people in the local area to help them understand what they can do to help improve their local beach and bathing water quality."
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