Thursday, 13 January 2022

Report on River Pollution

 The citizen scientists of the Friends of the Upper Wye have contributed to a government report on pollution in rivers which has just been published, along with groups for other rivers, like the Ilkley and the Windrush.

The conclusion the report came to was that the majority of river pollution is caused by farming, followed by water companies releasing sewage into the waters.  Run-off from roads is also mentioned.

According to the academics from Lancaster University who were involved, the phosphates in the River Wye come from poultry (44%), sheep (28%) and cattle (28%).  They say that massive reductions in poultry and cow manure are needed to get the river back to net zero for phosphates, as well as no further spreading of phosphate fertiliser on farmland.  They also recommended that planning permission be refused for any further intensive chicken farming in the catchment area of the River Wye.  That's going to mean a huge change in farming methods - and the manure from twenty million chickens has got to go somewhere....

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