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Ludlow MP pushes bill to crack down on companies polluting rivers with sewage

By Rory Smith | Ludlow | Environment | Published:

A Shropshire MP has pledged to crack down on companies polluting the country's rivers with sewage.

Pollution in the River Morda

Ludlow MP Philip Dunne has introduced a Private Members Bill (PMB) which will seek to place a duty on water companies to ensure untreated sewage is not dumped into inland waters.

The Tory MP had rallied views of constituents after landing the plum chance to influence legislation of his choice.

He is one of the first of 20 MPs to introduce a PMB having been chosen by ballot in the top seven last month, which guarantees his suggestion will be discussed.

Mr Dunne said: "At present, treatment of waste water is required to different standards according to the area and population it serves.

"But given that an Environment Agency report found 86 per cent of our rivers do not meet current environmental standards, it is clear the current system is not working.

"So my bill aims to clamp down on raw sewage entering rivers from overflowing or poorly functioning sewage treatment works."

Progress

Mr Dunne has put forward his bill having recently become chairman of the Environmental Audit Committee.

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The legislation is set to be discussed in the House of Commons on July 10.

He added: "Work will now begin with the Parliamentary clerks to find the best way of drafting this bill to make it effective. I shall also be engaging with Government to seek their support to have the best chance of becoming law.

"I intend to introduce it on the floor of the house on Friday, July 10, my first opportunity to do so in the Parliamentary calendar. I will update constituents from time to time about its progress."

The Conservative politician had sat on the Environmental Audit Committee for two years until it was disbanded ahead of the General Election in December. He was elected as its new chairman after a vote in January.

He will now lead the committee in scrutinising the government's record on the environment and climate change across all departments.

Mr Dunne beat Dr Matthew Offord, MP for Hendon, in the vote.

Rory Smith

By Rory Smith
Reporter - @rorysmith_star

Senior reporter based at the Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley, Telford.

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