Clause 90 - Trade effluent consents

Water Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:22 am on 21 October 2003.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Bill Wiggin Bill Wiggin Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

I just wanted to ask what ''trade effluent'' was. I would be grateful if the Minister gave an example.

Photo of Elliot Morley Elliot Morley Minister of State (Environment and Agri-Environment), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Trade effluent and trade premises are expressions used in relation to the trade effluent consenting regime. Trade effluent is simply discharge from manufacturing premises that has been licensed by the Environment Agency. It is as simple as that.

Photo of Bill Wiggin Bill Wiggin Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

My understanding is that the clause allows trade effluent to enter the sewers, but I may have got that wrong. I would be grateful for clarification.

Photo of Elliot Morley Elliot Morley Minister of State (Environment and Agri-Environment), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Whatever happens to trade effluent, it must be licensed. Anything that passes from a trade or industry into the sewers is classed as trade effluent and must be licensed. Whether an effluent can enter the sewers very much depends on what the substances are. The powers will enable the Secretary of State to narrow or widen those two expressions and to make it clear, where the discharge is from particular processes, substances or types of activity to the public sewer, that it is subject to the trade effluent discharge consenting regime. The clause makes it clear that there are strict controls on what can go into public sewers and gives the Secretary of State the power—if she chooses—to restrict the definition of what that is. The clause is intended to result in better regulation of the trade effluent discharge process.

Photo of Bill Wiggin Bill Wiggin Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

I am grateful to the Minister.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 90 ordered to stand part of the Bill.