None of the 18 waterbodies in the Evenlode Catchment currently achieve ‘good’ ecological status under the Water Framework Directive. Phosphorous is the main pollutant, about 65% of which comes from sewage effluent and about 28% from agricultural runoff. Currently only the Sewage Treatment Works on the Dorn and Glyme tributaries are equipped with phosphorous stripping capabilities. The high phosphorous concentration enriches the water and causes algal blooms in the late spring and summer which severely affects the quantity and diversity of macrophytes, invertebrates, and fish.
The ECP facilitates collaborative approaches to support ecology across the catchment and make sure the River Evenlode can achieve good ecological status. Upgrading the remaining sewage treatment works in the catchment will be vital if this goal is to be achieved.
Catchment champions are local volunteers who monitor dissolved nitrates, phosphates, turbidity and invertebrate catches at multiple locations in the catchment. This work is done in collaboration with Freshwater Watch and the Riverfly Partnership.
The data collected is analysed to build more detailed picture of the water quality status of catchment water bodies. Catchment Champions also play an important role in reporting pollution incidents on their stretch of river.
Water Quality Monitoring
Multi-parameter sondes have been installed in strategic locations around the catchment. These devices monitor a range of parameters including ammonia, conductivity, dissolved organic matter, turbidity and tryptophan for coliforms. Using these devices enables us to monitor changes in water quality in real time and enhances our ability to build a detailed picture of water quality issues in the catchment.
A number of the sondes are specifically used to monitor the difference in water quality upstream and downstream of Sewage Treatment Works in the catchment. An open source portal to view the data collected will appear on this page shortly.
Click below to find out more about water quality issues affecting the Evenlode Catchment.
In February 2014 the Planet Earth podcast by Richard Hollingham came from Wallingford, with Paul Whitehead of the University of Oxford and Mark Barnett of the Environment Agency who explain why the UK’s River Thames will fail to meet new pollution standards unless farmers and water companies take radical action. This is still relevant today.