Friday 26 August 2022

The Tiny River Alne - Fat Cats and Fallibilisms

Ben loves water he always has done and the recent family holiday to Playa Blanca in Lanzarote he couldn't wait to get in to the sea, because why the heck not, it was warm and inviting after all. He is the definition of a water baby and with autism and global development delay, the term is almost befitting. Back in Blighty though a hot weather dunking needs to be considered carefully.

You see earlier this year the outgoing chief of the Environment Agency, Emma Howard Boyd, said water company bosses should be sent to jail for allowing raw sewage to be pumped into England’s waterways.

Instead, many are enjoying multimillion-pound salaries and bonuses, as billions of litres of sewage are poured into the country’s rivers and oceans. You see water companies are allowed in some circumstances to discharge raw sewage via “combined sewer overflows” (CSOs).

The idea is that these overflow pipes act as a safety valve during period of heavy rain, allowing excess effluent to be released untreated rather than flood the network and people’s homes. 

In practice, however, these CSOs are discharging sewage even in just the lightest drizzle, and what was meant to be an emergency solution is now everyday practice in the water industry.

Campaigners blame decades of underinvestment in the network as well as a growing population for the problem. They say money spent on high salaries and share dividends should be redirected to increase capacity in the network.

But how much are the bosses of water companies being paid, and how much sewage is being released?

Well I stupidly turned on the news recently (don't bother it will only depress you) and didn't like what I heard, you see, Liv Garfield, Severn Trent CEO the boss in my area was paid £3.9m in  2021(WTAF) where under her watch there was  >59k hours of CSO discharges when her bank account was lined with gold and then some. 

In December in the same year Severn Trent was fined £1.5m by a court for illegally discharging sewage from its water treatment works in Worcestershire. Around 360,000 litres of raw sewage was discharged at four plants. Easier to pay the fines isn't it, bit like football managers rewarded for failure, well that's what it seems anyway. Now where is that hosepipe, I can think of somewhere to forcibly inset it, and it's not the clematis in the back garden. 

Anyway better get off my soapbox and go fishing hadn't I..... this the small syndicate of the Alne I'm not sure I'm going to re-join again because although it's handy, in-fact the nearest bit flowing water I fish, I've sort of outgrown it. I know it intimately and maybe that's the problem, maybe a trip to waters new on the Alne could spark my interest in it again.

I love this sort of river I really do and the water quality cannot be that bad as it has some wild brownies frequenting its shallow waters. Some big'uns too however those other than the hundrum I've hooked and lost sadly. Anyway as I type this we'd had quite a bit of rain during the day so with an influx of water would the predators be up for a bite or two ?

Only way to find out, out with the Salmo Hornet !!! 

As normal I had the stretch to myself and what a lovely short session in solitude. The chublets were on it with around 9 or 10 caught where I got to see the take. The trout though were very cagey with a few small ones appearing out of nowhere to nudge the lure but not take it. 

Then one of around 3lb made an aborted take literally by my feet but it was clear they were having an off day. Oh well, I love this sight fishing for predators, oh the fish are not the biggest, but so what, just the session I needed after a testing day at work. 

1 comment:

  1. The sewage discharge business and the lack of action from government is outrageous. I think there is more to come out on this. No, don't just go fishing. Write letters, petitions, take action to put pressure on these crooks. Because that it what they are.


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