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River pollution: Can the Evenlode show how to clean up England’s waterways?

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The Evenlode in Oxfordshire, UK, has been plagued by pollution, but farmers, the water industry and local volunteers are working together to clean it up



Environment



2 February 2022

“It’s depressing. It’s something we should be able to put right,” says Mark Purvis, standing next to a brook feeding the Evenlode, a river in the Cotswolds area of southern England that has been plagued with water pollution in recent years. “We’ve seen declines in numbers of fish, insects and weed growth in the river. And terrible turbidity [cloudiness] in summer,” he says.

The Evenlode’s problems aren’t unique. England’s rivers are “a mess”, a report by MPs in the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) concluded last month, due to a lack of funding and monitoring …

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