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Wiltshire Council to spend £820,000 combating nitrate pollution

November 7, 2011 12:31 PM

WC is to allocate the money, including £225,000 in the current financial year, to clean up farms on the county estate to attempt to make them compliant with the European Commission Nitrates Directive. The purpose of the directive is to prevent contamination of ground water. Farms in Nitrate Vulnerable Zones (NVZs) have to build secure slurry stores to prevent leakage, and are restricted as to when they can spread slurry. The Directive comes into force on January 1st 2012. Since the Environment Agency estimates it can take up to 18 months for an affected farm to achieve compliance WC could be accused of leaving things a bit late, and WC director Carlton Brand accepts that the council will be at risk of prosecution.

For the full report see


According to the EA:

"Farmers have until 1 January 2012 to put in place the necessary infrastructure to meet these rules. As soon as slurry storage is available, they must also comply with the rules regarding closed periods for the spreading of organic manure with high readily available nitrogen. The first regulatory step in this process is to calculate and record the slurry volume that needs to be stored, and the current available storage volume. All NVZ farmers had to have done this by 30 April 2010. It is estimated that a typical development might take 18 months if this includes the need for planning permission and the use of contractors to build the facility."