Update from Eastbourne Borough Council Leader David Tutt on 14-Feb-22


During the first weekend of February, Southern Water suffered an electrical fault at their Wastewater Treatment Works on the seafront.  There was no backup generator on-site and as a result they discharged hundreds of tonnes of raw sewage into the sea.  If this was the first time that something like this had happened it would be a major concern, and I might have taken the view that, hopefully, they would learn from it and take action to ensure that it does not happen again. The truth however is that only last year they were fined a record £90m for no fewer than 6,971 unpermitted sewage discharges along the south coast. For many of these, they blamed the Victorian infrastructure, but that does not apply here as the treatment works were only built in 1997.  I have been contacted by representatives of two groups of sea swimmers who are livid that this pollution has taken place and I fully understand their concern.  The sea is one of our greatest natural assets and a reason that so many people choose to come to Eastbourne for their holidays.  I am seeking a meeting with directors of Southern Water and will be seeking assurances that they will install a backup generator on site, which will kick-in, in the event of future power failures. Southern are not the only water company to behave in this fashion.  These sorts of discharge are taking place on a regular basis across the UK. This cannot be allowed to continue; the Government must strengthen the law, in order to protect our sea, waterways and environment.  We need much tougher penalties for non-compliance, which not only penalise the companies, but also the highly paid directors who run them.

Monday 21 February sees the start of Fairtrade Fortnight and the Council will once again be flying the Fairtrade flag over the Town Hall.  Purchasing Fair Trade goods supports those who work in the industries that grow the food and produce the items that we buy, helping to save many from being exploited and ensuring that they receive a fair wage for their labour.  Nowadays, it is much easier than it once was to find Fair Trade goods, as they cannot only be found in specialist stores, but on most supermarket shelves.  Whilst we should of course be looking for fairly traded products throughout the year, this fortnight is used by the Fairtrade Foundation to increase awareness of the exploitation which takes place and encourage us all to do more to create a more equal world. The title for their event this year is “Choose the World You Want” and more information about the festival can be found at https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/Get-Involved/Current-campaigns/Fairtrade-Fortnight/

Stay Safe!

David Tutt

 

 

about  the festival can be found at https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/Get-Involved/Current-campaigns/Fairtrade-Fortnight/

Stay Safe!

David Tutt


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