A dying river? The state of the Usk report

Guy Mawle has written a report on the state of the River Usk in Wales. This river is a Special Area of Conservation, subject to the highest levels of protection, and yet this detailed report shows that 

the ecology of the River Usk is degraded and deteriorating. If it is to be restored, or even resilient, there will have to be a sea change in strategy, resources, regulation and management.……Business as usual’ means further deterioration due to climate change, poor agricultural practice, and inadequate sewage treatment.’

The state of the Usk is likely to be reflected in many other rivers in the UK. 

Guy lives and fishes on the Usk and has known the river for over 40 years. He is a Fisheries Scientist and has written the report in a personal capacity.
The report and this letter have been sent to the Chairman of Natural Resources Wales and to Lesley Griffiths, Minister for Rural Affairs in the Welsh Government.

Usk soil erosion
‘What gets measured, gets managed. NRW does neither for sedimentation. Soil eroded from farm land polluting the Usk upstream of Crickhowell, 2016. Erosion from fields will have worsened with more being used for arable or fodder crops and left bare during heavy rain, itself increasing due to climate change. Pesticides are another concern. Photo: Wye & Usk Foundation.