Fines are treated as a business cost, the Environment Agency is toothless – the whole thing stinks
What’s remarkable is not that a water company knowingly and deliberately poured billions of litres of raw sewage into the sea to cut its costs. What’s remarkable is that the Environment Agency investigated and prosecuted it. Every day, water companies pour tonnes of unprocessed filth into England’s rivers and seas, and the government does nothing.
Even in the wake of the sentence last week, under which Southern Water was fined £90m, the company’s own maps show a continued flow of raw filth into coastal waters. Same shit, different day. The only occasions on which water companies are allowed by law to release raw sewage are when “exceptional rainfall” overwhelms their treatment works. But the crap keeps coming, rain or no rain.