Below is the response from Ian McAulay, CEO of Southern Water to Gillian's request for information on the use of UV treatment in the Chichester Harbour. Gillian has asked that SW adopt this treatment across all their sites locally.
I can confirm that there are two of our sites that discharge into Chichester Harbour that have UV treatment. These are Chichester WwTW and Bosham WwTW. There are at present no plans to increase the number of UV installations for WwTWs in the constituency for the current regulatory period, AMP7 (2020 to 2025). Generally assessments in terms of needs and benefit of tertiary treatment such as UV are considered in relation to the EA permit consent which takes particular circumstances into account.
It is perhaps a little ironic in this tumultuous week that we are able to report all 83 bathing waters in our region have again met all European standards this year. The EA will be officially confirming in January but status is likely to be the best performance recorded with the current assessment as 58 at excellent, 20 at good and 5 sufficient. There is potential for one other to move to good. I think it fair to say that 25 years ago the first discussions of achieving bathing standards was similar to that currently around inland bathing waters and storm discharges, i.e. it will be incredibly difficult. Nonetheless it has been achieved for coastal waters and that is often forgotten.
However, as we discussed sentiments are changing and we are constantly exploring options to enhance environment quality. That very much includes partnership working and cross sector collaboration, Chichester Harbour being a perfect example of where an initial, singular focus on waste water treatment works as the problem and solution to the nutrient pollution issues has been evidenced to be erroneous. It was striking to see many MPs note this week that it is important that water customers should not unnecessarily bear the cost of environmental enhancement where better options are available. It is an important point and as I said we are of the view that we must look to broader solutions. As an example we have identified areas where separation of 40% of surface water from the combined sewer system would reduce storm overflows by 80%. That would be more cost effective and significantly less carbon intensive and I think it is best for the environment and customers.
We have committed to pursuing this type of approach for storm overflows and we look forward to your continued support in this regard.
Please let me know if you have any further queries.
Chief Executive Officer