Following our recent emails, I wanted to update you on the pollution incident affecting the Pyl Brook, Beverley Brook and tidal Thames.
Our staff have been out on site every day since the initial report to monitor the impacts along the affected stretch of river and work with our contractors to contain and clean up the black waste oil. As noted in our previous email, our contractors have installed measures to capture the oil for removal at 3 locations along the affected stretch of river (please see location map and images below this email):
· Morden Park (booms)
· the confluence of the Pyl Brook and Beverley Brook (interceptor dam and booms)
· Wimbledon and Putney Commons (interceptor dam and booms)
Booms are being maintained at Morden Park to enable skimming and removal of the oil and any contaminated loose vegetation is being removed. Two pipe dams were constructed to slow the flow of water to enable more of the oil to be captured and skimmed off.
The recent rainfall increased river flows which then overwhelmed the pipe dams. However, the booms placed each side of the dams are still helping to capture and hold oil for removal. The rainfall has also flushed oil, which had been trapped in the drainage system, through into the river. Unfortunately, this is extending the clean up time.
We have continued to monitor the impact on wildlife in the area. A small number of wildfowl have been affected, but there have been no signs of distress to fish or other wildlife.
Our priority at this time is to respond to this incident and limit harm to the environment as much as possible. We are also continuing to collect evidence to support our investigation into this unpermitted water discharge activity. Our aim is to capture and remove as much of the oil as possible. However, we expect that the iridescent sheen could remain on the water for a time as it is not possible to capture such a thin layer of oil. The small amount remaining will gradually disperse and we expect it will have a minimal effect on water quality.
If any of your constituents have any concerns please encourage them to contact our free 24 hour incident hotline on 0800 80 70 60.”
4th April 2022
Last week there was a spillage into the river at Beverley Brook . I am extremely disappointed and concerned by the damage to the local environment and wildlife. I have been in contact with the Environment Agency to ensure that action is putting in place to clean up the river and that the polluter is being pursued.
This morning I have received the following email which updates on the EA’s current actions. I have contacted them again to seek reassurance that all necessary actions are being taken to clean Beverley Brook.
Following on from our email on Tuesday 29 March, I wanted to update you on the pollution incident affecting the Pyl Brook, Beverley Brook and tidal Thames.
We are continuing to work with our contractors to contain and clean up the black waste oil. Booms are being maintained at Morden Park to enable skimming and removal of the oil and any contaminated loose vegetation is being removed.
Two Pipe Dams (see picture) have been constructed, one at the World of Golf and one upstream of the A3 in the Richardson Evans playing fields. This allows water to pass through and for the waste oil to be recovered through skimming techniques.
Our staff are attending sites along the affected river stretch each day to monitor the impacts and this will carry on over the weekend. We are checking the confluence of the Beverley Brook and the River Thames for any signs of oil at low tide and found no evidence there today.
Our observations today suggest that the remaining pollution is unlikely to have any environmental impact on the River Thames. We are in contact with the Port of London Authority to gather any additional information regarding the pollutant affecting the River Thames. These actions will be particularly important with the Boat Race due to be held on Sunday and we have been in contact with the organisers regarding our response to this incident.
We have been monitoring the impact on wildlife in the area and only a small number of wildfowl seem to have been affected, with no fatalities reported and no signs of distress to other fish or wildlife."