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‘Super Sewer’ to Beckton should be shorter says commission

PUBLISHED: 06:30 03 November 2011

Plans for the so-called “super sewer” to relieve Thames Water from dumping millions of gallons of effluent into London’s river network should be reviewed, an inquiry said this week.

Thames Water are proposing the 20-mile long tunnel scheme. But the Thames Tunnel Commission, under Lord Selborne and established by five of the boroughs affected by the proposals, advocate a shorter tunnel with “greener” options for preventing rain water entering the sewage system.

Thames Water said it would study the findings.

Millions of gallons of polluted water is discharged into river Thames - Stratford’s Abbey pumping station is a major outlet - after heavy rainfalls.

The £3.6bn tunnel plan has led to fears of spiralling water bills and residents’ protests over the loss of open space and regeneration sites.

It is planned to run from west to east London to the giant sewage treatment works at Beckton

Unveiling his report Lord Selborne said: “Our forensic analysis shows there is a substantial body of evidence pointing to the fact that there is a smarter way to make the River Thames cleaner.

“A shorter tunnel, combined with green infrastructure solutions that are built up incrementally in the medium to long term, would be both compliant with EU directives and less costly and disruptive to Londoners.

The Commission’s recommendation would half the costs of the current plan,


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