River Crane Urban Catchment Management

Organisation: Thames Water

Location: West London

Type: Case Studies & Projects

Exploring how integrated upstream catchment management can reduce nutrient loading in an urban catchment, reducing the need for end-of-pipe solutions.

Misconnected household drains are a problem in many urban rivers. Domestic wastewater is routed to surface water drains, polluting rivers; and rainwater from domestic properties is drained in foul sewers, swelling volumes of wastewater to be treated and absorbing treatment capacity at sewage

Working with the local Catchment Partnership, the project delivers activities including catchment modelling, property-level improvements, sustainable drainage systems, education and engagement within schools, and Citizen Crane – a citizen science project.

Citizen Crane volunteers conduct Outfall Safaris assessing water quality at outfalls along 140km of surface water. Details of polluting outfalls are then passed to Thames Water’s Environmental Protection Team for follow up. Outfall Safaris have heightened public awareness of catchment
pollution and have now been rolled out in other urban catchments. In 2017, 1,177 London outfalls had been assessed and 356 of these showed signs of pollution.

See here for the Thames Water Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Report 2018/19.

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