HC Deb 29 June 1989 vol 155 c508W
Mr. Clay

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) if he will list all discharges into the River Wear which are controlled by the sewage treatment effluent consent standards by maximum admissible concentrations, the number of occasions when these standards have been breached and action taken to enforce compliance;

(2) if he will list the number of occasions the Northumbria water authority has been found to be in breach of the Control of Pollution Act 1974 (a) river by river in the authority's area, (b) the substances involved in each incident, (c) the source of the contravention, and (d) on coastal outfalls and the substances involved;

(3) if he will list the number of times that Northumbria water authority has been in breach of the sewage effluent consent standards on the River Wear since 1987; which sewage treatment works were involved in each incident; and what action was taken to enforce compliance.

Mr. Howard

[holding answer 21 June 1989]: Details of the consents to discharge into the River Wear, including those for sewage effluent, and information about breaches of these consents are held on registers maintained by the Northumbrian water authority and are available for public inspection, free of charge, at all reasonable hours. This information is not held centrally.

In considering what action to take to enforce compliance, Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution pay particular attention to the following factors: whether the sewage treatment works is persistently or grossly non-compliant; whether the breach has had a detrimental effect on the receiving water quality; and whether there are plans for improvement either through capital investment, by better maintenance or by improved operational control.