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Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Volume 714: debated on Tuesday 10 May 2022

River Wear: Pollution

The following is an extract from Environment, Food and Rural Affairs questions on 28 April 2022.

Following their field trip to the River Wear last month, year 5 and 6 pupils at St Thomas More School in Belmont were saddened by the levels of pollution in the river, especially the amount of plastic, so they have asked me to come here today to keep everyone on the right track. Can the Minister tell the pupils of St Thomas More School what the Government plan to do to help clean up the River Wear to protect local wildlife and preserve the beauty of the riverside?

I commend the St Thomas More primary school pupils for going out, and it is wonderful to get our children out in the environment. It is interesting and perhaps disappointing that they found pollution, but the message to them is that this Government are absolutely on water and river pollution. Indeed, our new proposed target to reduce the amount of pollution in rivers such as the Wear in old abandoned mining areas by 50% by 2030 will make a genuine difference, as will our raft of other measures to tackle storm sewage overflows.

[Official Report, 28 April 2022, Vol. 712, c. 851.]

Letter of correction from the Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the hon. Member for Taunton Deane (Rebecca Pow).

An error has been identified in my response to the hon. Member for City of Durham (Mary Kelly Foy).

The correct response should have been:

I commend the St Thomas More primary school pupils for going out, and it is wonderful to get our children out in the environment. It is interesting and perhaps disappointing that they found pollution, but the message to them is that this Government are absolutely on water and river pollution. Indeed, our new proposed target to reduce the amount of pollution in rivers such as the Wear in old abandoned mining areas by 50% by 2037 will make a genuine difference, as will our raft of other measures to tackle storm sewage overflows.