Environment secretary Caroline Spelman has given her support to Thames Water’s plans for a tunnel to reduce the amount of raw sewage discharged into the River Thames.
Thames Water estimates that the proposed Thames Tunnel will cost £3.6bn which could result in bill increases of around £60 to £65 per year for customers.
“A tunnel continues to offer by far the most cost effective solution to the unacceptable problem of raw sewage being regularly discharged into the Thames. This is a large and complex project and I recognise that it comes at a significant cost,” she said.
Thames Water will shortly launch a consultation exercise on the need for the tunnel, the route and the sites needed to construct and operate the project.
The Department for the Environment Food and Rural Affairs carried out an impact assessment in 2007 and will update this before publishing the revised version of the document online.