Farmers asked to bid for Fowey river clean-up cash
Farmers have been invited to bid in an auction to help cut pollutants seeping into the River Fowey that flows through their land.
South West Water has teamed up with the University of East Anglia and the Westcountry Rivers Trust in a pilot scheme in which farmers make improvements on their land to help stop pollutants.
To help, the company has put up a £360,000 pot from which farmers have been bidding to pay for work.
According to South West Water, farming practices can contribute to the deterioration of river water through the run-off of sediment, nutrients, pesticides and animal manure making it costly for the company to clean-up the water.
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South West Water will pay for part or all of the cost, up to £50,000 per farm.
Martin Ross, environmental manager for the company, said: "The scheme will reduce the amount of pollutants getting into the river, which in turn will help reduce our costs of cleaning the water for drinking."
Dr Laurence Couldrick, head of catchment management for Westcountry Rivers Trust, said: "We asked farmers to look at a range of improvements.
"The options for farmers included things like building a slurry pit, installing a roof over their yard or manure store, or fencing the land near to the river inlets to prevent cattle from straying into the water."