Sewerage undertakers' rights to discharge

In an important test case, the High Court has held that sewerage undertakers' power under the Water Industry Act 1991 to lay sewers includes an implied right to discharge surface water running through those sewers. The case arose out of a dispute between British Waterways Board and a water company concerning a discharge into a canal but clearly has wider application, and the principles in the case will govern all sewerage undertakers. The outcome has significant financial and environmental implications, and the decision is subject to appeal.

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