The United Nation’s World Water Day was this week, and the Medway Labour and Co-operative Group used this day to draw attention to the serious issue of the condition of the River Medway.

Previous efforts from our Group to ascertain the extent of damage to the Medway from raw sewage have been ignored by the relevant authorities, and we will be taking the next step of raising this issue as a Members Item at a Council meeting.

Cllr Simon Curry, Medway Labour and Co-operative Group Spokesperson for Regeneration, Culture and the Environment said:

“The cleanliness of our water and rivers is of the utmost importance. We are extremely concerned about the lack of transparency around the levels of sewage in the River Medway.

“On behalf of concerned residents, we will be raising this as a Members Item in June to try and secure more information about the true scale of the problem. We invite Southern Water to attend our meeting and explain why it is that levels of pollution are so high.”

Cllr Tristan Osborne, Medway Labour and Co-operative Group Spokesperson for Community Safety added:

“Only 14% of English rivers have been classified as being in good ecological condition by the Environmental Agency. None of our rivers are in good chemical condition. This quite simply isn’t good enough and shows the Tories lack of ambition for our country and our planet.

“The River Trust has created a tool to report on River discharges. In 2020 alone the River Medway catchment area reported 103 discharges of sewer storm overflows across the three Medway constituencies.”

“Thousands of people live and work on or near to the River Medway. The River is a key part of our maritime heritage linked to Chatham Dockyard and other landmarks; in proximity are major highstreets and residential areas. Southern Water needs to invest its profits in reducing discharges which harm our natural environment”

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