William Eichler 22 February 2024

Coastal councils raise water quality alarm

Coastal councils raise water quality alarm   image
Image: Roxanne Avila / Shutterstock.com.

Local authorities in coastal areas have raised the alarm about the impact on health and tourism caused by the continuing deterioration in coastal water quality.

Nearly three-quarters (70%) of coastal councils surveyed by the Local Government Association Coastal Special Interest Group (LGA Coastal SIG) said that pollution had led to a loss of tourism.

Almost 90% said there was not enough water quality testing carried out in coastal waters and over 45% said the reason for a decline in Bathing Water Classification was unknown or that the cause could not be fully identified.

The LGA Coastal SIG is calling for an independent review of water companies, the removal of self-monitoring, and changes to the water quality monitoring programme.

It also called for a review of the Pollution Risk Forecasting system and appropriate resourcing of the Environment Agency to enable them to deal with the issue.

Cllr Darren Rodwell, environment spokesperson for the LGA said: ‘The local economies of many coastal communities are dependent on maintaining good water quality, whether it be through fishing, water sports or tourism.

'For the sake of these communities, their health, and the planet, we are urging the Government to properly resource the regular testing of coastal waters.’

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