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English rivers in poor health: environmental charity report

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-06-15 02:58
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Volunteers pick up garbage on the riverbed of the Thames River in Greenwich, London on January 28, 2023. [Xing Yi /]

LONDON -- None of England's water bodies are in good health, according to a recent report from a United Kingdom (UK) non-governmental organization.

The Rivers Trust, an independent environmental charity, revealed in its State of Our Rivers Report that out of 3,553 river stretches with water chemistry data available, only 151 have improved their ecological status, while 158 have deteriorated.

Data from the British Environment Agency also shows that sewage releases by water companies into England's rivers and seas more than doubled in 2023.

In May, experts and scholars from the Royal Academy of Engineering raised the alarm over health risks posed by human waste in England's rivers and seas, drawing criticism of the regulator for not compelling water companies to upgrade their infrastructure and safety protocols.

In March 2023, the House of Lords' Industry and Regulators Committee reported that water companies prioritized financial returns over the environment. The committee also noted that the British government has failed to address key issues such as water pollution and future supply.

According to BBC News, major English water companies illegally discharged wastewater over 6,000 times during dry seasons in 2022.

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