A waterway protection charity has revealed the devastating impact that sewage spillages are causing for London’s rivers.
London Waterkeeper revealed that the River Graveney, in South London, has been impacted by 150 sewage spillages in the last calendar year.
The River Graveney, Tooting, eventually leaks into the Thames and is among other London waterways which have suffered extensive pollution from sewage spillages.
London Waterkeeper took to Twitter and said: “The Graveney suffered 158 overflows in 2020. A sewer in Tooting spilled into the river 51 times.
“Upstream is the Streatham Storm Relief sewer which discharged 100 times into the same stretch of water.
“It smells of sewage & there's sewage waste clinging to metal ladders into the river.”
The charity focuses on the whole country and its hundreds of rivers but has a section solely based on London.
Focus on London’s rivers was brought to public attention last week because of a sewage and oil spill in Ealing.
The spill killed wildlife along the River Brent with dead fish washing up on the river bank.
Locals were in uproar about the impact of the pollution and the Environment Agency, along with Thames Water, were called in to investigate.
The charity wants answers as to why so many spillages of sewage are occurring in the capital's rivers.
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They say it is having a devastating impact on wildlife and biodiversity in every single river in London.
Following the reports of pollution on the River Brent, Thames 21, a charity protecting London’s rivers, said: “The prompt action of local people have made the greatest contribution to spotting.
“Initial reporting and ongoing monitoring of the pollution and its impacts. Thames Water (TW) have also acted in a timely manner.”
Thames water said they were investigating the River Brent’s pollution and revealed a handy guide to make people aware of when a river is polluted so it can be reported quickly.
They said that water pollution can be recognised by noticing a number of indicators in or near a stream or river including: sewage solids, toilet debris such as toilet paper, condoms and sanitary products. Soap suds or a milky-looking discharge and grey coloured water. Smells of sewage were also listed as an indicator.
Thames water were contacted about the sewage leaks along the River Graveney but said they need up to twenty days to investigate the figures which London Waterways revealed.
The water maintenance company advised that if you've seen pollution like what's described above, to call 0800 316 9800.
When you're prompted, select Option two for wastewater, followed by Option two to report pollution.
Do you want to share your story? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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