NRA fails to implement prosecution policy

Only one-third of serious water pollution incidents in England and Wales are resulting in prosecutions, despite a policy adopted by the National Rivers Authority (NRA) in 1990 to bring such offences to court. But prosecutions for less serious incidents are increasing, as is the level of fines.

The NRA's prosecution record is set out in its annual reports, the latest of which was published in August. This showed that the number of water pollution incidents increased again in 1991/2 to a record total of 29,524.

However, incidents in class 1 - "serious" cases which resulted in an actual or potential threat to water intakes or aquatic life - declined in 1991/2, although the number of class 2 incidents -"significant" cases which may

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