Nicola Daniel has asked Owl to publish the following:
In my email letter to the Times on Sunday which inspired Tom Ball’s article on the Otter wild beaver colony threatened by sewage (he phoned to discuss it with me). I made a further point, not picked up in the article.
South West Water’s contribution to the £15 million Lower Otter Restoration Project is to renew the original sewer pipe running along the shingle bar and under the river. This is in order that the Budleigh Salterton’s sewage holding tank under the Lime Kiln carpark can still discharge under the sea at the Otter ledge. (In 2020 this happened 60 times, 591 hours). I find this very disturbing that money is available to replace a pipe which will continue to discharge untreated excrement and not to seek to remove the excrement in an environmental friendly way.
This excrement is just a small percentage of the sewage vented into the bay at Budleigh Salterton. The river is very contaminated and the beavers not only live in Honiton’s sewage but overspills from all the settlements along the river. eg Newton Poppleford had 90 discharges, 442 hours in 2020. Surely SWW could sort out the sewage for a village of approximately 1,800? This pours into the sea.
In the last few years at least swimmers could consult a board indicating if it was safe to swim in the bay. Not anymore. It has not been repaired all during the summer.
To my mind the only solution to this disgraceful saga is to cease all house building along the river Otter until our effluent is disposed of in a manner appropriate to the standards of a civilised society living in 2021.
Footnote from Owl: Remember that the Pennon group, owners of South West Water which provides 83% of its profits, has aspirations to take a leading voice in how our local economy is run. It describes itself as: the leading UK infrastructure group behind the ‘Great South West’ Growth Charter. With this record of putting profits before pollution, this is scary!