New water quality regulations proposed to ‘protect Manx waterways’ – BBC News

New water quality regulations on the Isle of Man would “protect its waterways for both people and wildlife”, the government has said.

Proposals for more stringent limits on pollutants have been laid out by the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture (DEFA).

Environment minister Geoffrey Boot said waterways were “hugely important for the environmental, economic and social benefits they provide”.

A consultation on the plans has opened.

People are being asked to give their views on acceptable levels of nutrients, chemicals and heavy metals in the island’s rivers, reservoirs and sea.

A DEFA spokesman said high levels of pollutants posed a threat to the island’s “delicate ecosystems”.

Under the proposals, two new control standards would be introduced to the island’s 1993 Water Pollution Act to bring it in line with the UK.

The Environmental Quality Standards regulation would dictate the acceptable concentration of pollutants, while the Water Quality Objectives sets a target date by which those standards should be reached.

In December, Tynwald approved a strategy for the adoption of the 2006 EU Bathing Water Directive and the implementation of tougher testing for bacteria.

A £23.5m scheme to deal with Manx waste and prevent raw sewage being pumped into the sea near Peel and Laxey was also approved by Tynwald in March 2019.

The DEFA consultation on the new proposals runs until 7 October.

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