Live-broadcast documentary from the Wye investigates our rivers
This week George Monbiot presented a shocking investigation into the state of our rivers – from beside and on the River Wye on the England-Wales border.
The crowd-funded investigation, Rivercide, aimed to find out “who is polluting our watercourses and why we’re not stopping them”. The world’s first live documentary, the film streamed in real-time on a sunny Wednesday evening.
Environment Agency figures published last September tell us that not one lake or river in England is in good health.
Unsurprisingly, the main guilty parties are animal manure and untreated sewage – but more surprising is the inaction when illegal pollution events happen. We found out there are probably 20 million chickens being kept in the Upper Wye and Herefordshire catchment area!
All over the country our rivers and their wildlife are in grave danger, with phosphate pollution feeding massive growths of algae which then blanket the spawning beds, smother the water plants and turn the rivers into ‘pea soup’. Just 4 minutes into the film, aerial photographs show the awful damage caused by the algal blooms in June 2020, with striking before and after shots.
We can make a difference
It’s not all bad news however. The film talks to local people up and down the country who are coming to the rescue of their local rivers and tells us what we can do too. Can you help by:-
- Signing the petition calling for the Environment Agency and Natural Resources Wales to be properly funded
- Writing to your MP – email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org to urge them to help save the Wye
- Joining a local group to organise clean-ups, monitor your local water as part of our citizen science group testing the Herefordshire catchment of the Wye, watch for and highlight local pollution and damage events
- Writing to the Environment Agency email@example.com asking for action against polluters
With your help we can make change happen!