22 November 2022
Dunne calls for water company fines to be used to restore waterways

Philip Dunne commends the Conservative Environment Network manifesto Changing Course and specifically highlights the proposal that money from water company fines should be used to restore the waterways and source of the pollution rather than go to the Treasury.

Philip Dunne (Ludlow) (Con)

I congratulate my hon. Friend on securing the debate and on the emphasis he is placing on rivers, waterways and canals in the west midlands, which I too represent through the Ludlow constituency. I commend to him the manifesto published yesterday by the Conservative Environment Network, which is titled “Changing Courses”. It has six measures, all of which are important, to help maintain the health of our waterways. He talked about the health of human beings using them for recreation, but does he agree that when our waterways get polluted, it would be appropriate to consider introducing the ability for the polluter to pay for the problem that they have caused, by diverting the fines currently levied on companies that are found guilty of polluting waterways? Instead of going to the Treasury, they should go to some organisation that would help restore the effects of pollution, regardless of whether it is into a river or canal.

Michael Fabricant 

I can say to my right hon. Friend, who is also Chair of the Environmental Audit Committee, that not only will I support him, I have actually signed the letter agreeing to that proposal, because it seems an eminent way to ensure that our canals and waterways remain as unpolluted as possible.