Brexit risks worsening nitrate ‘time bomb’, warn MPs

The UK’s efforts to tackle nitrate pollution may not be strong enough to meet water quality targets and could deteriorate after Brexit, a parliamentary committee has warned

Slurry being spread on field.
Slurry being sprayed on a field: agricultural practices are a key cause of nitrate pollution in the UK

The UK’s efforts to tackle nitrate pollution may not be strong enough to meet water quality targets and could deteriorate after Brexit, a parliamentary committee has warned.

A new report from the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) expresses concern that a number of witnesses said the current nitrate monitoring system is “not fit for purpose”. Others suggested that the Environment Agency, which is responsible for monitoring nitrate pollution in England, lacks sufficient resources to ensure compliance with existing rules.

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