’281 days of non-stop sewage dumping is disgraceful’ – MP calls for urgent tax on water company profits to tackle pollution to Cumbria’s lakes and rivers

28 Mar 2024
Tim and campaigners

South Lakes MP Tim Farron is stepping up his calls for a tax on the profits of water companies to improve Britain’s sewage system, after the huge scale of sewage dumping in Cumbria was revealed.

Staggering data from the Environment Agency showed sewage was released into the River Eea at Cark for 281 days non-stop last year.

The figures also show that in 2023 sewage was discharged into:

  • the River Kent at Staveley for 202 days
  • Coniston for 141 days
  • Grasmere for 106 days

Tim is calling on the Government to take action, including replacing OfWat with a tougher regulator and a ban on bonuses for water company bosses whose firms have dumped sewage.

Tim said: “The scale of sewage dumping is far worse than feared. An environmental tragedy is taking place under this Conservative Government while water firms make a fortune

“We need to see real action. That means a tax on the inflated and unearned profits of water companies to fix our creaking sewage system, and replacing Ofwat with a regulator that has real teeth.”