The UK has 640 bathing waters, of which 624 are ‘coastal waters’ and 16 are ‘inland waters’, a term which covers both rivers and lakes. Given that wastewater discharges in the UK have not been designed to support bathing water quality, the water industry will be facing a real challenge if river bathing water designations increase significantly, perhaps reflecting the number of designations of its European neighbours.
The Environmental Audit Committee’s (EAC) report on water quality in England’s rivers was published in January 2022. The report recommends that the government should actively encourage the designation of at least one widely used stretch of river for bathing within each water company area by 2025. This marks the first steps towards making designated river bathing in England commonplace.
How will the UK water industry prepare for riverine bathing water designations? Chris Mooij and Robert Palmer discuss how this should be approached in this published Institute of Water magazine article.
View the Institute of Water Magazine 2022 Spring Edition online.