Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Government gives green light to Thames Tunnel

Caroline Spelman MP, the Environment Secretary of State has announced the Government's formal backing for the Thames Tideway Tunnel, otherwise known as the "super sewer stink hole" by our own Council. Their use of our money to campaign against the new sewer was found to have been dishonest when they claimed that residents themselves would risk being made homeless by the scheme.

Our own council has long been isolated in its opposition to the scheme, with other riverside councils, Mayor of London and central Government on both sides of the general election being very much in favour.

The core of London’s sewage network was designed in the late 19th Century and was designed to overflow at times of heavy rainfall to ensure that sewage did not back up into houses and streets. Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs) were intended to discharge the raw sewage into the Thames in the event of extremely heavy rain.

Increasing populations and changes to land use in London have lead to this occurring around 50 times per year. With further population growth and projected climate change, this figure is expected to increase in coming decades and spills could occur when there is very little rain. In fact London was recently threatened with fines by the EU for repeatedly breaching the safe limit of raw sewage being discharged into the river.

Our Council continues to insist that the case for the sewer is not proven, but their past untruths have left them with little credibility. So it came as no surprise to see Caroline Spelman MP say yesterday:

"A tunnel continues to offer by far the most cost effective solution to the unacceptable problem of raw sewage being regularly discharged into the Thames. This is a large and complex project and I recognise that it comes at a significant cost. I will ensure that Defra and Ofwat continue to scrutinise the costs and options to ensure that Thames Water’s proposals represent proper value for money."
"Proper value for money" - now that would be a change.


  1. Are they still planning to dig up Ravenscourt Park for two years, or is it Furnival Gardens? Or perhaps both? Let's hear a bit about that too, shall we?

  2. We've heard plenty about that from the Council but as we've seen most of it has been untruthful. As you know I originally believed them too and called on you to support their campaign to save both parks. It subsequently turned out to be untrue.

    Hello Raj, by the way