Urban Diffuse Pollution


Urban diffuse pollution is recognised as the ‘reason for not achieving good status’ in 10% of waterbodies in the North West River Basin District (NWRBD).  Opportunities to address it are often restricted by the infrastructure of the urban built environment and the fragmented responsibility for tackling sources of pollution across a range of stakeholders – including Natural Course partners.

Work to build up a more detailed picture of the sources of diffuse pollution within the urban areas of Greater Manchester (and more widely) has been happening throughout Natural Course – for example, outfall surveys and capital projects at Moston Brook and Dales Brow.  This alongside work by other stakeholders, such as the ‘green infrastructure for water modelling’ (link opens external website) by Community Forest Trust, and SuDS mapping by  IGNITION (link opens external website), all help to improve our understanding of where green infrastructure can be introduced or enhanced, and the opportunities for investment to deliver water quantity improvements.

Links have been made between Natural Course and organisations working to address urban diffuse pollution issues in London, with a knowledge exchange workshop held to enable the flow of information between the two city regions.

There is now an opportunity to build on the knowledge that has been developed in Greater Manchester during earlier phases of Natural Course, the work of IGNITION and to learn from the modelling and capital projects that have been developed in London.

What we are doing:

Addressing water quality issues associated with road runoff by developing a model to identify locations of the most polluting roads in Greater Manchester, and where interventions such as green infrastructure could be installed to address the pressure and improve water quality.

Delivering a green infrastructure capital project to demonstrate how nature-based solutions can be used to address urban diffuse pollution pressures associated with significant traffic movement.

Learning from and sharing our knowledge with the London City region to help us build capacity.  Engage with Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), district highways and drainage engineers, and other professionals in the transport infrastructure sector to help address urban diffuse pollution.

Who else is involved?

Greater Manchester Combined Authority, Greater Manchester local authorities, Environment Agency and Community Forest Trust

Project location:

Greater Manchester

Latest update:

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