Water company's waste projects under fire from NRA

The National Rivers Authority (NRA) has voiced concern about industrial waste treatment projects at two Yorkshire Water sewage works which discharge to seriously polluted rivers. Some NRA officials fear that the sewage works may be used as a "dilute and disperse" treatment for industrial residues - and that sewage sludge incinerators on the sites could act as a back-door route to burn industrial waste. The issue has highlighted gaps between the responsibilities of the pollution control and waste authorities.

The works involved are at Knostrop in Leeds, which discharges to the river Aire, and Blackburn Meadows in Sheffield, which discharges to the Don. Yorkshire Water, through its subsidiaries Yorkshire Water Enterprises (YWE) and Global Environmental, is tankering in liquid industrial wastes for treatment on both sites.

As long ago as 1978, the former Yorkshire Water Authority defined quality objectives for both rivers, placing them in class

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