Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has strongly disputed accusations by Afonydd Cymru and the Angling Trust that it is not ‘fit for purpose’ when it comes to managing and responding to pollution incidents.
The environmental body wants to reassure people that protecting the environment from pollution is one of its highest priorities, and it will always take action to respond to and investigate serious pollution incidents.
And while the number of pollution incidents on farms is not increasing significantly year on year, NRW recognises that it is too high, and that the number and scale of slurry pollution incidents needs to reduce.
Ceri Davies Executive Director of Evidence, Policy and Permitting at NRW said:
“We are disheartened to have our work portrayed in this light. Our staff do a great job, day in a day out in challenging circumstances, and their passion and commitment to the Welsh environment should be commended.
“The solution to agricultural pollution of rivers does not lie with NRW alone. We are only one organisation with a role to play in reducing the amount of pollution in our rivers and streams, but we are doing our best.
“The fact remains that we are working in extremely challenging financial circumstances, and as a result, have to change the ways we work.
“We are working closely with the agricultural industry so we can help them work more effectively, and pick up on problems more quickly when they happen so we can respond immediately and limit the damage.
“We are working very hard, with our partner organisations, to do things differently. We are making more of our resources available to advise farmers which we hope will prevent these type of incidents from happening in the first place.”