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Creating a better place

Working towards a cleaner Wharfe – a closer look at water quality testing at Ilkley’s bathing water

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Environment Agency, Sustainability, Water
The image shows a photograph of the River Wharfe at Cromwheel, with a view to the suspension bridge across the river.

In December 2020, a stretch of the River Wharfe at Cromwheel, Ilkley, in Yorkshire was designated a bathing water by Defra,the first section of a river in the country to become a bathing water. Yorkshire’s Bathing Waters lead Claire Campbell …

Citizen Science in East Anglia

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Environment Agency
photo of two people stood in a river with a bucket and a fishnet to do some monitoring

Citizen science initiatives provide invaluable data about our water environment and complement our own monitoring and assessment work, enabling a greater understanding of the issues we face and how together we can take action going forward. John Findlay, who works in the East Anglia analysis and reporting team at the EA, writes here about his role and the data his team is collecting.

Cleaning up rivers polluted by abandoned metal mines

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Environment Agency
The Force Crag mine water treatment ponds, Lake District. Photo by John Malley.

The problems facing water are complex, with multiple sources of pollution affecting water quality. One of the lesser-known areas of the Environment Agency’s work is cleaning up pollution from abandoned metal mines.
Mining played a major part in Britain’s rich industrial history, but this also left thousands of abandoned mines scattered across our landscape. Almost all these mines had closed by the early 1900s but they are still releasing harmful metals including lead, cadmium and copper. This is one of the top 10 issues for water quality in England as it harms fish and river insects. Abandoned mines are the largest source of metals to British rivers and seas (click here for more information). Pollution is localised to about 1,500km of rivers - mainly in the North East, Cumbria, Yorkshire & Cornwall.