Usk Community Project

As a company, we depend on the environment for the water and wastewater services we provide. We take our responsibilities to protecting the environment seriously and we invest around £1 million a day in improving and maintaining our networks.

We also know that customers want us to do more, especially to help protect the quality of our rivers such as the Usk. This is why we are working in your area to improve how our assets - such as Combined Storm Overflows - operate.

On this page you will find some information on the challenges we face, the £10 million investment we’re making over the next three years and the funding available to support the community with good causes in the area.

What’s the problem?

The quality of our main rivers is monitored by Natural Resources Wales. There is concern about the river water quality in parts of the Usk as they’re not achieving what’s called ‘good’ ecological status. This means that there are too many chemicals in the river such as ‘phosphorous’ which can cause algal blooms which can affect the amount of oxygen available in the water and harm wildlife.

What’s causing this?

There are a number of factors which can increase phosphate levels. This includes how we treat wastewater before it’s returned to the environment. Our modelling of the River Usk for example shows that our assets (i.e. our treatment works, Combined Storms Overflows or CSOs) are responsible for between 21% - 23% of the phosphates in the main water bodies, with CSOs only responsible for 1%. The remainder – over 75% - is caused by other factors such as agricultural run-off and animal faeces, urban surface water drainage, misconnected drains, as well as private septic tanks.

However, we understand that this is an important matter for local residents, and we are committed to playing our part to doing what we can to reduce our impact on the river Usk.

Our investment

Over the next three years, we’re investing over £10 million in the community of Usk to improve the way our treatment works operates and also reduce the number of spills that come from our Combined Storm Overflow. To achieve this, we will be working at these sites but also on the sewer network within the highway. This is to ensure that our sewers have enough capacity to deal with the waste that it receives and treats before safely returning it to the local environment.

What are we doing?

We have a significant amount of work to do which will take time, but we are committed to making continuous improvement year on year. That’s why our work will be carried out over the next three years in the following phases:

What are we doing?

There are sometimes factors beyond our control that may delay or change the scope of work, but we’ll always minimise any potential disruption where possible. Phases 2 and 3 are currently in the planning and design stages and will be carried out within the next three years. Once we are ready to start work, we’ll let you know.


In Your Area

You can stay up to date with our day to day construction work in the area on the In Your Area section of our website.
Click here to find out more

We know our work can sometimes cause disruption, and we want to leave the community in a better place. If you’re fundraising for projects to benefit the community, you could receive funding from a share of £10,000 .

If you are a community organisation and would like to be in with a chance of receiving a share of the fund, you will need to click here and submit a Community Fund application. Within the first step of the application, you will be asked to select a category that best fits your application. Select "Project giveaway" and quote the reference "Usk Community Fund".

To be eligible, groups must be based within Usk or the NP15 post code area.

Combined Storm Overflow

CSOs play an essential role in keeping all of our homes and communities safe from the risk of flooding during heavy rain. Click here to find out more.

River Water Quality

Over the last few months, we have given considerable time and resource to review our plans for investment, investigations and evidence gathering, customer communication, stakeholder engagement and the wider reporting of data relating to the operation of our assets. We have challenged our approach and have a plan on how we will play our part in helping to improve river water quality. Click here to find out more.

Frequently Asked Questions