Issue raised in the UK
Manx Utilities says raw sewage discharges on dry days, like those reported in the UK press recently, are 'extremely rare' on the Island.
Today (12 September) a watchdog has accused the UK government and public bodies of failing to comply with environmental laws over sewage overflows.
In a statement issued to Manx Radio, Manx Utilities’ says: "Discharges are made in accordance with a ‘License to Discharge’ issued by DEFA under the Water Pollution Act 1993. Whilst many of these licences allow for ‘storm’ discharges of dilute sewage in the event of heavy and/or prolonged rainfall they do not allow for so called ‘dry spilling’ as has been reported recently within the UK press."
"Manx Utilities is clear on its obligations with regard to its discharges into the marine and aquatic environment and is pleased to confirm that discharges of raw sewage during dry weather are extremely rare. Historically only the larger IRIS pumping stations and the latest regional works have had discharge monitoring equipment installed but we have recently completed the installation of flow monitors on all the rural waste water treatment works but the gathering of data from these devices has only just started and we have not yet calibrated any spills against rainfall events. The high quality of the Isle of Man’s rivers and bathing waters gives us confidence that sewage discharges such as those reported in the UK are a rarity on the Isle of Man."
"The discharge of raw sewage remains continuous in Peel, Laxey and Baldrine and although these discharges are licensed by DEFA the resolution of this issue is a priority for Manx Utilities."