THE River Wye has been put further into danger with the announcement by Ministers scrapping so-called ‘nutrient neutrality’, claim campaigners.
Richard Tyler from Save the Wye said: “House builders no longer have to worry about their impact on the river, nor do they have to contribute towards solutions. And agricultural pollution, the much bigger problem, remains unaddressed.
He went on to say, “We are incensed that this legal protection for our rivers is being removed. We all know how badly polluted our beloved Wye has become – you only have to put your foot in to feel the slime or look at the flow to see its colour.
"Yet the only restriction on its pollution by housing is being removed. Despite all their protestations about being green, Ministers have shown their true colours through this disgraceful act.
He claims they promised that this Government would not weaken environmental laws and that they would actually increase protection.
“We can now see that this was a lie. As soon as they felt they could gather a few more votes, they ditched the commitments as if they were never there.
“There is a promise of some more money for wetland creation but the amount is laughable–£140 million across the whole of England – but there is no guarantee it will work nor any indication of who pays for their long term management. It certainly won’t be the house builders, putting yet more burden on taxpayers.
“For the Wye, we need a long term plan for reducing nutrient pollution with major reductions in chicken numbers, action to reduce legacy phosphate and many more nature-based solutions built into the landscape. Removing the requirement for nutrient neutrality, makes this even more urgent,” he added.