HL Deb 16 December 1986 vol 483 c162WA
Lord Cullen of Ashbourne

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will report on the quality of rivers in England and Wales.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment (Lord Skelmersdale)

The report of the 1985 River Quality Survey, which provides details of the quality of rivers, canals and estuaries in England and Wales, was published today. I have arranged for copies to be placed in the Library.

Using data routinely collected by water authorities, the survey shows that, although there has been deterioration in a few areas, there has been improvement in others. The overall quality of the waters surveyed continues to be high, with 90 per cent. of river and canal length and 92 per cent. of estuarial length assessed as being of good or fair quality.

Consideration is being given to the implications of these results, including the need for improvements to the survey methodology.