HC Deb 30 July 1957 vol 574 cc152-3W
79. Mr. Fletcher-Cooke

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether the causes of the sudden pollution of the River Ribble during the night of Wednesday 3rd July have yet been ascertained by the Ribble River Board authorities.

Mr. H. Brooke

The Lancashire River Board attribute this sudden pollution to de-oxygenation of the upper tidal waters of the river. During some weeks of hot dry weather sewage solids had settled in certain stretches of the river, and the damage was done when this sediment was disturbed by the run-off from a heavy thunderstorm on 3rd July and carried upstream by the next incoming tide.

103. Mrs. Castle

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether, in view of the destruction of thousands of fish by polluted waters in the River Ribble on 3rd July, he will review the powers of river boards and local authorities to enable them to deal more effectively with the menace of pollution.

Mr. H. Brooke

A sub-committee of the Central Advisory Water Committee is at present enquiring into the law dealing with trade effluents. I think it right, however, to say that an effective and lasting solution to these problems of pollution—about which I share the hon. Member's concern—depends more upon such practical factors as chemical and biological research and the expenditure of considerable sums of money on new and improved sewerage works than upon changes in the law.

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