Lib Dems announce £10m plan to recruit new Sewage Inspectors with rollout of unannounced inspections

18 Jun 2024
Sewage outflow pipe

The Liberal Democrats have announced their plans to increase the number of water inspections to clamp down on sewage dumping water firms. 

The party has pledged £10 million per year to deliver new water quality inspectors, as part of an ambition to recruit at least one hundred new ‘sewage-busters’.

The water quality inspectors would work for the party’s new water regulator, the ‘Clean Water Authority’, giving it the capacity to deliver unannounced inspections, ensuring water firms cannot cover up pollution. 

The role of the new inspectors could include conducting audits of water company pollution and illegal sewage dumping, with the ability to force entry to sites if water companies were slow to grant permission.

Under the party’s plans, the water regulator Ofwat would be replaced with a new Clean Water Authority which would take on relevant powers to inspect and clean up waterways across Wales.

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have also criticised the Welsh Labour Government for under-resourcing and underfunding Natural Resources Wales with the body facing further staff cuts as a result of Labour cuts to the rural affairs and climate change departments.

Natural Resources Wales was already forced to cut 500 staff members in 2017 amid cuts from the Welsh Government.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds MS said: 

“The state of our Welsh rivers is a national scandal and people are appalled that the Conservatives have allowed water firms to mark their own homework and get away with dumping raw sewage into our rivers, beaches, and lakes for so long.

Meanwhile, Welsh Labour Ministers have gutted Natural Resources Wales to the point it is no longer able to do the job expected of it.  

A new wave of sewage busters will ensure no water company gets away with polluting our treasured rivers, lakes, and coastlines. By increasing testing, we can finally get a grip on these polluting and profiteering firms who completely disregard our environment. 

The Liberal Democrats plans to abolish Ofwat and replace it with a regulator with real teeth and to put more money to enforcement will help give our waterways the lifeline they need to be preserved for future generations and put a stop to this dreadful scandal.”

This website uses cookies

Like most websites, this site uses cookies. Some are required to make it work, while others are used for statistical or marketing purposes. If you choose not to allow cookies some features may not be available, such as content from other websites. Please read our Cookie Policy for more information.

Essential cookies enable basic functions and are necessary for the website to function properly.
Statistics cookies collect information anonymously. This information helps us to understand how our visitors use our website.
Marketing cookies are used by third parties or publishers to display personalized advertisements. They do this by tracking visitors across websites.