Press release

We want your views on the water environment

The Environment Agency is asking for views on how to improve and protect the water environment in the South West.

Take a moment to think about how much you use or are near water in your everyday life. Did you know that the Environment Agency has set out plans for how water in the South West will be looked after in coming years? And now is the time for you to have your say on how we will do this.

Water quality in the South West has steadily improved over the last 20 years. The draft river basin management plan (dRBMP) for the South West looks at water in each catchment across the river basin across the South West peninsula and suggests how we can work with others to ensure that 100% of our waters are in good condition by 2027.

Jeremy Bailey, Programme Manager for the Environment Agency, said:

The Water Framework Directive gives us an important opportunity to make real improvements to the water environment. We value the views of others and know that river basin planning can only succeed if we work with local partners and take local action. We urge anyone with an interest in the water environment to take a look at the information about their local area in the consultation and let us know what they think.’

It is vital that people and organisations get involved in the consultation. This is your opportunity to influence the final plan and ensure that its contents are practical, achievable and effective for you and your interests.

The consultation runs from 10 October 2014 to 10 April 2015 and can be found at www.gov.uk/government/consultations/update-to-the-draft-river-basin-management-plans where comments can be made online to the consultation.

Ends

Notes to Editors:

• The Water Framework Directive (WFD) takes a strategic and integrated approach to managing the land and water environment in river basins. It involves working with key partners to set environmental objectives for all groundwater, surface waters, estuaries and coastal waters within the European Community on a river basin scale. The WFD requires us to draw up plans for meeting these objectives in each river basin district. The SWRBD has been further broken down into 12 catchments.

The WFD is an opportunity for people and organisations to work together to protect and improve the quality of every aspect of the water environment from groundwaters, rivers and lakes to estuaries and coasts.

• The final plan will set out how the water environment will be managed over the next 5 years. The plan states the current state of each water body within the river basin district, what we hope to achieve for it and summarises what actions we will use to deliver the plans.