The CLA has said that government proposals to replace the current registration system for septic tanks with a more risk-based system are a step in the right direction for more than half a million people with rural properties and businesses not connected to mains sewerage networks.
The Association has welcomed the deregulatory proposal from Defra, showing that the department has listened to the CLA’s call for a review of the current burdensome approach to managing small sewage discharges.
CLA President Henry Robinson said: “The CLA has lobbied for this review for several years. A more risk-based approach is needed so that permits are only required for the most sensitive areas affected by pollution, rather than needing a permit for all small sewage discharges.
“Any new installations need to meet the British Standards in force at the time, but the cost of this can be financially disproportionate for those who simply have to use a septic tank because they are not connected to mains sewerage. One CLA member from Hampshire has reported the cost of the small sewage treatment plant advised by the Environment Agency was £35,000.”
Mr Robinson added: “Defra’s review should look at ways in which the Government, local authorities and water companies can all help fund upgrades to sewerage systems, and that upgrades are only considered when properties are sold.”