Northumbrian Water pays out £1.1m over pollution breaches
A water company will pay more than £1m to green projects to make up for historic pollution incidents.
Northumbrian Water has accepted responsibility for offences in County Durham and Teesside and agreed five Enforcement Undertakings (EU) with the Environment Agency.
The offences mostly involved breaching regulations at pumping stations.
It will pay out £1,179,500 to environmental groups and wildlife trusts working in the areas affected.
Recipients include Durham Wildlife Trust, the Marine Conservation Society, the Tees Valley Wildlife Trust and the Tees and Wear rivers trusts.
Fiona Morris, from the Environment Agency, said that in certain circumstances EUs "achieve more than if the company had been convicted and fined".
She said: "The outcome is beneficial to the environment relevant to where the offence took place.
"It will also help to change the behaviour of the company and focus on their activities.
"In these cases Northumbrian Water has taken action to rectify the situation and the environment will now benefit from some great work by local charities."