The Environment Agency (EA) has published data showing that water companies released sewage 370,000 times into our rivers, lakes, estuaries and seas, in 2021.
The figures show that sewage flowed for about 2.6 million hours into our precious blue space where we paddle and where wildlife should thrive.
The figures do show a slight improvement on 2020, when sewage was let go 400,000 times, at 3.1 million hours. However, we believe more could be done to improve the situation.
The reason for the decrease is unclear but could be down to there being fewer storms during the year.
There are about 15,000 storm overflows in England, alone, and discharge excess sewage to rivers, lakes, or the sea when rainfall exceeds capacity.
The EA data follows the announcement of the government’s new consultation on its Storm Overflows Discharge Reduction Plan.
In the plan, the government announced new investment and set targets for water companies to protect the environment and public health.
Surfers Against Sewage are calling for support to help end sewage pollution. You can sign their petition here.
They also have a page where you can report a suspected pollution incident.