Ali Morse, Water Policy Manager at the Wildlife Trusts uses this blog to introduce the key pressures facing the water environment and how best they can be tackled using a holistic approach.

May 2020

Managing the freshwater environment is indeed a tricky balance; we expect our waters to support wildlife, provide drinking supplies, take away wastewater, and avoid flooding our homes. Our rivers, lakes, estuaries and coastal waters are the subject of targets to bring them into ‘Good Ecological Status’ – contributing to a near-natural state, where they can provide the things our society needs whilst also supporting wildlife; their use would be sustainable.

But currently, few waters are thought to achieve that status. We await the publication of updated data to tell us how our waters currently fare, but the picture is unlikely to be positive. The Catchment Data Explorer web-portal which houses this data gives figures for up to 2016, and an Environment Agency Report on Water Quality confirmed for example that, by that year, 86% of river water bodies had not reached good ecological status.

Read more here.

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