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Pressure is building on Birmingham’s Conservative MPs to drop their opposition to the ban on the deliberate pumping of raw sewage into our rivers and by our beaches.
The Conservatives have failed to set out any meaningful way forward after they whipped their MPs twice to oppose a ban in the Commons.
Yet new analysis of Rivers Trust research reveals the sickening level of raw sewage pumped into local waterways.
Across Birmingham there have been 2026 spills lasting a staggering 9283 hours – 387 days – last year alone.
Raw sewage was discharging into rivers and canals in Northfield for longer than any other constituency in Birmingham. In 2020 there were 226 spills lasting 2,568 hours last year.
The figures include:
- The combined sewage overflow in New Road, Rubery spilled 130 times for a total of 2402 hours.
- The sewer storm overflow in Leach Heath Lane, Rubery spilled 25 times for a total of 18 hours.
- The sewer storm overflow in Bristol Road South, Longridge spilled 8 times for a total of 35 hours.
Alex Aitken, Councillor for Kings Norton North said, “These figures are utterly revolting. Raw sewage is being pumped into local waterways in Northfield for the equivalent of 107 days every single year.
“Leading campaigner Feargal Sharkey has been clear that Government statements so far ‘[do] not even come remotely close’ to what is required.
“People in Northfield will find it utterly astonishing that Gary Sambrook has voted against a ban on pumping raw sewage into our waterways.
“Yet when challenged on the issue, Mr. Sambrook just shrugs off the claim as ‘fake news’ and that banning the discharge of raw sewage into rivers completely would be too expensive. Far from fake, the threat to residents’ health and our green spaces is alarmingly real.
“That is frankly a ludicrous position to take. This has to stop, it’s bad for the environment, it’s bad for local families, and frankly it’s utterly disgusting.
“After eleven years in power this is the state the Conservatives have left us in. Britain is better than this. It’s time for a change.”