25 August 2022

The UK is threatening health and marine life on the French coast by allowing raw sewage to be dumped in the Channel and North Sea, say three Euro MPs.

Pollution warnings have been issued for almost 50 beaches in England and Wales, after heavy rain caused sewage overflow to be diverted into rivers and the sea.

The French MEPs accuse the UK of neglecting environmental commitments and risking marine life and fishing.

British water companies have said they are investing in solving the problem.

Since its departure from the European Union, the United Kingdom had neglected its environmental commitments, the MEPs said in a letter calling for legal or political action from the European Commission.

A UK government spokesperson said their allegation was “simply not true”.

Despite no longer being bound by EU laws, the UK was still a signatory to relevant United Nations conventions on protecting shared waters, the MEPs argued.

The three MEPs all belong to French President Emmanuel Macron’s pro-EU En Marche party. One of them, Pierre Karleskind, chairs the European Parliament’s fisheries committee.

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