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Water: Nitrates

Volume 470: debated on Thursday 10 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment his Department has made of the sources of nitrates found in water; and if he will make a statement. (173978)

The paper ‘D1 —Nitrates in water: the current status in England (2006)’, published in support of the consultation on implementation of the nitrates directive in England, details DEFRA's assessment of the sources of nitrogen in surface waters in England.

The source of nitrates found in water, in England, is shown in the following table:

Source

(kt N/yr)

Percentage

Agricultural land

330

60.6

Sewage treatment works

175

32.1

Non-agricultural land

23

4.1

Direct industrial

9.5

1.8

Septic tanks

3.9

0.7

Direct deposition

2.1

0.4

Combined storm overflows

1.9

0.3