Sensitive Areas under the UWWTD
The Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive (91/271/EEC) was adopted by European Union in May 1991. It has the objective of protecting the environment from the adverse effects of untreated 'urban waste water', more commonly referred to as 'sewage'. It was transposed into legislation in Scotland by the Urban Waste Water Treatment (Scotland) Regulations 1994, amended by the Urban Waste Water Treatment (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2003,
Establishing minimum requirements for the treatment of significant sewage discharges, the Directive provides protection to the water environment from nutrients and/or nitrates present in waste water where these substances have adverse impacts on the ecology of the water environment or abstraction source waters.
Under the Directive we are required to review environmental waters at four-yearly intervals to determine whether they are sensitive to the effects of sewage discharges and if so, identified as sensitive areas with nutrient reduction provided at relevant sewage plants. SEPA carry out the monitoring on behalf of Scottish Ministers.
Additionally, waters designated under other directives, such as the bathing or shellfish water directives where tertiary treatment is required to meet these directive requirements are also designated as sensitive areas under the UWWTD.
Designated Sensitive Areas - water bodies currently designated as sensitive areas.