Much has been written in the last couple of weeks about sewage and the failure of water companies to prevent it from entering watercourses, whilst politicians fail to act to prevent them from doing this. I will give my take on this further on in this post.
Over the last two years we have been at war with Severn Trent Water following their abysmal pollution failures resulting in the deaths of dozens of wild birds in Smethwick’s pools.
The one thing that disgusts me most is the lack of political involvement and direct public criticism of these bastards from Coventry in all that time, the three ward councillors and MP for the area being totally mute entities.
It has been left to environmental campaigners to raise awareness of the abysmal failures of the privatised water industry nationally and its avarice, and in this regard, The Rivers Trust have led the way in exposing these liars and serial environmental terrorists. Rivers however, are not the only watercourses being blighted, and unfortunately, issues surrounding “avian botulism” caused by human pollution are never brought to the table by anyone in power or influence.
The latest update on the situation at Smethwick Hall Park, the most blighted regular contaminated pool by Severn Trent in Sandwell makes for depressing reading. We had had a meeting with Nick Austin, SMBC new interim director on site, but have heard little since after he stated that he would be writing to STW to ask how many of their fabled “misconnections” had actually been resolved, and therefore were no longer allowing raw sewage to enter the water at the SMBC owned lake.
It appears that he has now left as swiftly as he arrived, and I have had to chase a reply from the council, and have received this,
“Please accept our apologies for the delay in responding to you, we are still waiting for a formal response letter to be sent through regarding the issues discussed in our meeting with STW in early September. We contacted them to chase this and at the same time asked them for an update regarding the current situation with misconnections.
The information provided by STW is as follows:
- STW are still working on identifying misconnections and to date have surveyed 181 properties with a further 61 properties remaining to be surveyed. Since our last meeting with them they have surveyed 36 properties.
- Out of the properties surveyed, 11 misconnections have been formally identified, to date 3 have now been corrected. STW are still waiting for residents at the remaining 8 properties to rectify their identified misconnections.
- STW have installed 3 cages on the system to catch any debris that might be flowing through to the pool, we understand that these are being maintained every 2 weeks. The cages/ screens are a temporary measure while they are still surveying surrounding properties.
In addition to the above update, we can also confirm that contractors have carried out the additional sediment removal that you highlighted during our site visit.”
From reading this, this is the sum total of this company’s failure to stop raw sewage entering this lake over two years, and it is fucking shite! It does not say how many properties STW have got to survey, just the ones that they have surveyed, or what type of misconnections have been found.
The fact that they are waiting for third parties to act is another excuse on their part- they were supposedly going to give the property information to SMBC for formal action through tenancy agreement if they were council properties, though this appears to have not taken place. These people should have been taken to court. Why have they not been?
As for the “cages”, I am not sure what these even are, or how they would stop fluid pollution entering the lake. As it has been seen, it is not just floating turds that have gone into here, but the stuff that “comes from your bum, like a pellet from a gun” as the song goes.
The Failed Regulator
“Please supply me with the NIRS form for incident 1977515 at Smethwick Hall park off Londonderry Lane, Smethwick West Midlands, please also supply any further incident reports generated off this one.
This pollution incident forms one of many by Severn Trent Water’s inability to prevent pollution through its network going into this pool. Dead birds on the pool follow these pollution incidents and are causally linked. Please also state if any officers from the EA attended this site to verify anything that Severn Trent reported finding after being sent out by the EA, and if not please state the reasons for this.”
The EA responded by sending me the info.
This report was very poor, and in my opinion, very poorly dealt with being once again categorised as category 3- meaning that no EA officer even attended the site. This is the repeat occurrence at this site and others, where those responsible for allowing the pollution to enter a separate waterbody to their assets are marking their own work.
Following the Environment agency inaction, I queried matters surrounding this via my MP, Nicola Richards. The response by the EA below is typical shite, but does explain in a laymen’s way the process of their categorisation issues. I will comment on the content of the points made afterwards.
“Dear Mr Carroll,
Thank you for your email of 20 August 2021 regarding concerns of pollution around Smethwick Park. The Environment Agency (EA) uses the Common Incident Classification System (CICS) to classify the impact of all environmental incidents and ensure a standard approach across the country. All incidents reported to us are responded to, categorised and concluded with the most appropriate action.
We consider a range of factors in classifying the category of a pollution incident. This includes impact on amenity, length of water course affected and other measures of harm including impact on fish and other aquatic life. Officers assess information and categorise each incident on a case by case basis based on guidance and experience.
We are not funded or resourced to attend every incident so will prioritise the most significant and seek to attend all Category 1 (Serious) and Category 2 (Significant) incidents as far as possible. The presumption is we will not attend Category 3 (minor) and Category 4 (no impact) incidents. These will be managed and responded to by liaising with operators and incident reporters without the need to attend a site. However there may still be circumstances where we would choose to attend a Category 3 incident, based on local knowledge or judgement – for example, if there is a risk of escalation to a more serious incident.
With reports of this type we ask partners including Severn Trent to assess or manage the situation as the more appropriate responder. We also raise issues and concerns with Severn Trent at our regular monthly meetings. We will continue to take proportionate action against sewage pollution where there is evidence of offences, in accordance with our Enforcement and Sanctions Policy.
I note that you are unhappy with the conduct of our officer Peter Mullard. I am sorry that you feel that Peter dismissed your reports regarding this matter. Peter did take the time to speak to you in relation to your report and update you on what was happening, which we do not do for all incidents reported to us. As detailed above we are not funded to respond to all incidents that are reported to us, because of funding cuts we have received. This means we need to ensure that our resources are deployed where they are needed most. Sometimes an Environment Officer may have a conversation with their Team Leader regarding an incident if attendance of a lower category incident is required. We do not keep records to support this conversation, as you have requested in your email.
I understand that you may not agree with this decision, however, your report does provide us with useful information and your report has been combined with other data and information we hold. This helps us build a picture of environmental threats and may allow us to secure funding in the future to take action. Please do continue to report any new, reoccurring or worsening pollution on 0800 80 70 60. If you have any questions or concerns on the above, please feel free to email me at Enquiries_WestMids@environment-agency.gov.uk.
Yours sincerely Rebecca Rogers Team Leader – Land & Water”
Obviously this once again demonstrates that wildfowl do not matter to The Environment Agency. They are not economically viable, not sold by farmers for food, not fished for commercial gain, and not owned by anyone who can make a loss from their demise. These are the only matters of interest and the real principles of the civil service and politicians who fail to make policy which cares about anything other than making money, and compensating those who lose from it.
Of course, the third sector who deal with the wildlife casualties are never compensated for the time, vehicle miles or care needed to try to deal with the serial industrial pollution being generated by bastards like Severn Trent Water.
It is interesting to note that the EA claim that The Conservative Government have cut their budget to respond to incidents, and this may well be the case. One could therefore ask if this has been done deliberately to engineer a situation whereby the private water companies are marking their own work. It would really not surprise me at all if some insidious force were behind this.
It was quite bizarre to be contacted by Mullard again a few weeks ago where he informed me of “an oil spill” at a pool in Birmingham. We attended , as did the RSPCA and some birds had something on them. What I observed however was raw sewage going into this pool, and here is the evidence of this below- again a Severn Trent Water area. I told the EA officer about this, and he claimed “it was being addressed”. I’m sure another category 3 incident would have been generated here FFS! 🙄
Turds Take Over Westminster.
Into the backdrop of this human filth, a few weeks ago some of the CEOS of the private water companies were summoned to give evidence and questions before the Environmental Audit Committee – this is in part relation to the emerging Environment Bill.
Despite the “shocking reports”, this committee gave this collection of poe-faced paid multimillion pound individuals a shockingly easy ride, almost one to rival the shite “scrutiny committee” of Sandwell Council all those years ago. The only comfort I take from that abomination of 2015 is that most of the protagonists there are in one way or another are either gone or on their way out. Maybe it was the curse I put on them in the room that night. 😛 👿
For some reason, the political class appear to be obsessed with swimming in rivers, and thus this was the first question put to them- WHY? Quite why anyone would want to swim in a fucking river is beyond me, perhaps because I associate it as a place from where bodies are usually retrieved when drunks and other idiots take a dive in there.
This is not the main issue with regards to the effects that the failure to stop raw sewage entering watercourses is having on wildlife. THEY HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO DRINK THIS HUMAN CRAP AND THEY DIE FROM THIS! No questions or evidence was sort on this as the glum faced group, except the Gushing Garfield sat there like fermenting prunes.
Garfield’s performance reminded me of a class swot actress who knew all the questions in advance, and in this she is as insincere as she is a fraud- a perfect match for the company from which she is paid over £2million annually.
Severn Trent Water are environmental terrorists, and their ability to make their own rules, mark their own work and tell lies- as I have caught them out doing, shows that the system is a failure- as are the EA.
It was stressed that the fabled “event duration monitors” about which both the EA and the water companies will pacify campaigners and the useless MP’s DO NOT MONITOR EFFLUENT DENSITY OR FLOW VOLUMES, JUST START AND STOP EVENTS.
The one point that she did make concerning agricultural pollution is correct, as this industry is behind much of the Nations problems with unsustainable animal farming. But in this regard and within this company, she knew exactly what she was doing as the cowshit horcrux is one which immediately shuts up the Conservatives in the room due to their NFU funding mates getting anxious. They will not of course put any restrictions on this crap and unsustainably cruel industry- their mates in wellies.
If you want to watch this, you can do so HERE.
LORDS AMENDMENT 45 AND ALL THAT JAZZ
This has produced a considerable amount of political spin, both from left in the over simplified– “the Tories voted to allow sewage companies to carry on dumping sewage” and a belated rebuttal from said group of MP’s which is as whiffy as the waste they claim not to want to go into rivers and watercourses.
What was voted down the Water loo, in amendment 45 from The Duke of Wellington, a hereditary peer incredibly, was putting a legal duty on these failing privatised water companies into discontinuing their actions with sanction of fine.
I do not believe that the proposed Bill covers any more than tip toeing in the water instead of making waves., and once again, it is left to these charlatans to self police and come up with “plans”, no doubt under some acronym that exhibits some childish schoolgirl giggles to the headmaster when pronounced, as was seen in Garfield’s evidence to the EAC.
As for the rebuttal, including that of my MP, I have to take issue with some of the nonsense contained within.
“However, this amendment was not costed at all, and there was no plan. It would have required a significant number of new sewage systems to be built. And, more concerning, in periods of heavy rain, it could potentially mean discharge of raw sewage into our streets.
The amendment would have meant huge costs, potential bankruptcy for water companies, and chaos for sewage. This would have had a direct impact on consumers. In my view, this would have been irresponsible to support and that’s why I voted against it.
Sewerage discharge occurs during periods of heavy rain when our Victorian sewage system cannot cope with the volumes. As we modernise our infrastructure this is less and less becoming the case but unfortunately, this is a necessary evil to ensure raw sewage doesn’t back up into our homes.”
The first point I would make about this concerns the “brownfield ” building, that these Conservative MP’s so appear to want to foist on communities with overcrowding in them already. Where is the cost, and where is the plan to accommodate these into the existing Victorian sewage system? The companies do not pay for this, and are statutory consultees who never appear to object to new developments, and neither of course do the developers. Both of these industries are of course friends of the Tories.
Every development therefore has on it application plans “connect to existing foul sewer” on every planning application. Do they honestly believe that the Victorian sewers they bemoan cannot take it can take more houses connected to it? This is also the reason for so called “misconnections” and the additional building issues that go with them.
In this regard this rebuttal is utter bollocks and I am calling it out as such, when said politicians actively campaign to turn re-wilded green areas, such as at Friar Park/Bescot into another giant housing estate, whilst appearing to talk in the future tense about its existence without any plans having been approved.
“The Severn Trent site is known to contain sewage sludge up to seven metres deep with potential gas production and contamination with heavy metals. “
“It is considered unsuitable for foundations for construction and it is suggested that the sludge be moved and encapsulated with a capping layer into a bund as part of a redevelopment strategy. There are however potential future environmental liabilities associated with the acquisition. “
This land was of course sold off by Severn Trent in a very dodgy deal indeed for the taxpayer. STW never clean up their mothballed sites- this is left to the taxpayer, land that was once in public ownership but now sold off by the subsidiary ” Midlands Land Portfolio. ” How much of this makes water companies “bankrupt” when they flog off such “crap sites for residential”?
The land is contaminated by their past use and is alongside The River Tame- where do you think it will go during the so called “clean up”? And where do you think the 750 homes will divert their sewage into- the “existing sewer”- where’s “the plan” for dealing with that, where’s “the cost” going to be met by?
As for “necessary evil”, I could not give a shit about sewage backing up into homes in this regard! It does anyway, as Severn Trent Water continuously fail to protect their customers from anyway. Brownfield building enthusiasts like Andy Street need to enter the real fucking world that they do not live in.
It is interesting that the alleged Conservative Government cuts to staff do not appear to be being visibly deterring the army of mowers who can turn up to remove millimetres of grass from the river banks in some fit of passionate barbering.
Is it not time that the EA got its priorities right of protecting the environment rather than houses that should never have been built on the flood plain?
The Environment Agency, aided by political planners have spent millions in The Perry Barr and Witton areas dealing with alleged flooding from The River Tame that takes place there.
This work has been going on for years, and is now over a year behind schedule without any apparent finish date. It has shut off the walk along the river for over 18 months. If I was employing this contractor, they would have had the sack by now.
Well its about “climate change” blah blah blah, “more heavy rain”, blah blah blah, well can you please explain to me how Persimmon Homes got planning permission then to build new houses right on top of the River Tame in Perry Barr, thus appearing to do so by public money being spent on this utter fraud of a “risk management” works?
I myself have had to wade in human excrement to rescue birds killed by STW and their negligence, only to then have them deny any link to the cause. They disgust me, as do their supporters. I see the benefit to their shareholders, but not to the tax payer with land that was once in public ownership. I remain defiant that privatisation of water has not worked and am a campaigner against it.
I think that people need to realise that these dots are connectable, and talk of “swimming in rivers” a distraction from the monetary gravy train gain that is being offered to the very few. The apocalyptic pandemics and end of world climate events are simply a means of resetting a nice pay day for friends of the political class- a world that they have created, a grandstand on which they can pontificate , and a means of controlling our behaviour for their own lucrative reward. Is it any wonder why they are so hated and despised?