Ferret investigation by Jamie Mann
Nearly 50 sites run by Scottish Water including sewage and wastewater treatment are “poor”, “very poor” or “at risk”, according to Scotland’s environmental watchdog.
Almost all these “unsatisfactory” sites are considered to be among Scotland’s critical national infrastructure – operations deemed essential for the state to deliver vital public services.
Campaigners warn that leaks put Scotland’s waters at risk of becoming an “open sewer”.
The Ferret revealed in July that sewage spilled into Scotland’s rivers, lochs and seas at least 12,000 times in one year – a figure likely to be much higher. Scottish Water has faced criticism over spills, which increased by 40 per cent over the last five years, an August BBC investigation found.
In the Scottish Environment Protection Agency’s (Sepa) 2019 draft compliance assessments – the latest available – Orkney’s Lunnon Quarry and the sewage treatment works in Falkirk were the worst-rated Scottish Water sites.
Both were rated “very poor”, with the former deemed “unsatisfactory” four years in a row.