HC Deb 22 February 1980 vol 979 cc616-7W
Mr. Ennals

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what measures he intends to take to encourage the Anglia water authority to install equipment to strip phosphate from sewage which runs into the Norfolk Broads; and what would be the cost of such installations.

Mr. King

The quality of the waters of the Broads and of their associated rivers is the responsibility of the Anglian water authority. My Department and the authority are jointly funding a research project to study pollution of the Broads. The study is being undertaken by the University of East Anglia and will be completed in 1981.

I understand that the phosphates present in sewage effluents are only one cause of the decline in plant life in the Broads. It may well be that additional measures may be necessary to improve the quality of the waters there. The best course of action will be made more clear when current research and intensive surveys are complete.

The capital costs of phosphate removal vary with the size and type of sewage works at which it is to be installed and the levels to which the phosphate content of the effluent from those works is required to be reduced. It is not possible to give the cost of such installations at the present time.