Severn Trent will star in a new BBC Two documentary, "revealing the hidden treasures that hide inside sewage", the water company said.Copyright: BBC
The Secret Science of Sewage, which airs on BBC Two at 21:00, goes behind the scenes at Severn Trent's sewage treatment works at Minworth, Sutton Coldfield.
Presenters Dr George McGavin and Dr Zoe Laughlin will follow each stage of the treatment process and speak to Severn Trent experts, who explain how bugs and other bits of kit are used to turn urine and faeces "into renewable energy and a nutrient-rich fertiliser", the firm said.
The show will also look at science that has the potential to discover new life-changing medicine and other valuable resources that have "remained hidden inside sewage, until now".
Local Democracy Reporter
A council has called for more investment from a water company, after it heard the flow of raw, untreated sewage into Nottinghamshire's waterways is becoming "worryingly routine".
One outlet in Sneinton discharged raw sewage into the Trent for a total of 1,010 hours last year, over 63 separate occasions, according to figures compiled by environmental charity The Rivers Trust.
The figures suggested there have been hundreds of spillages into smaller waterways and streams, as well as directly into the Rivers Trent, Leen, Maun and Erewash.Copyright: Getty Images
Richard Jackson, a Nottinghamshire county councillor for Toton, Chilwell and Attenborough, said the spills - from combined sewage outlets (CSOs), which were developed to allow the direct discharge of untreated sewage into waterways during heavy rainfall - were becoming "worryingly routine".
“Water companies were told by the government to install monitoring on these CSOs by March of this year, but by June this year 3,400 of the 10,000 outflows owned by the nine water companies still had no monitoring installed," he said.
“Most relevant to us in Nottinghamshire and the Midlands, is that having fitted monitoring devices to just 1,239 of the 2,879 inland CSOs Severn Trent monitors [they] recorded the discharge of untreated sewage 272,000 times.
“The water companies argue that such pollutants are diluted to safe levels by the time they reach major rivers, but that doesn’t alleviate my concern about the significant amount of sewage that is pouring into our smaller local waterways, damaging fish, animals and plantlife, and potentially causing a risk to human health.”
Mr Jackson made his comments in a full meeting of the council, which unanimously passed a motion calling for more investment from Severn Trent.
A Severn Trent spokeswoman said: "Our system is designed to stop customers’ homes being flooded during times of heavy rain.
"It does this by redirecting the waste water, which is mainly rainwater, to a nearby water course to stop it becoming overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of rainwater.
"This is fully agreed with the Environment Agency, and by doing this we hope to make sure no one has to suffer sewer flowing in their home, which is a terrible experience for anyone."
Severn Trent was one of two water companies two achieve a maximum four-star rating in the latest Environment Agency review of England's water and sewage companies.
The ratings are based on a range of measures including serious pollution incidents, pollution per kilometre of sewer pipes and compliance with permits.Copyright: Getty Images
Wessex Water was the other company to get a four-star rating.
Southern Water became the first company to be rated as one-star since 2015.
A resident from Birmingham has described "a river" outside her home after a pipe burst in the area.
- Copyright: PA Media
Households in and around Wotton-under-Edge who've been experiencing low water pressure can now get bottled water from an unmanned station.
Severn Trent has opened the station because of the "incredibly high" demand for treated water over the last two nights.
The station is located at:
- Kingswood Village Hall Wickwar Rd, Kingswood, Wotton-under-Edge GL12 8RF
The water company is also asking customers to "ditch their sprinklers and pressure washers" to help get demand under control.
Properties in the GL20 area of Tewkesbury are without a water supply this morning.
Severn Trent says it's due to large burst pipe and engineers are working to repair it.