Plaid Cymru welcomes Senedd backing for devolution of powers over water.
Plaid Cymru has welcomed the backing of the Senedd for the devolution of powers over water.
Following the debate called by Plaid Cymru in the Senedd, the party’s spokesperson for Climate Change, Energy and Transport, Delyth Jewell MS welcomed the ‘historic call’ that would ‘go a long way towards righting the many of the wrongs suffered by Wales over our most abundant natural resource.’
Plaid Cymru had recently uncovered that the Welsh Government had asked the UK Government to delay the devolution of Water, as set out in the 2017 Wales Act, despite claiming that the UK Government had been dragging their feet over devolving the powers.
A disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act revealed that in December 2018 the Welsh Government’s Environment Minister Hannah Blythyn wrote to the UK’s then junior Environment Minister Therese Coffey asking her to delay the transfer of full powers over water to Wales – something that had become possible following the passing of the Wales Act the previous year.
Following the debate, Ms Jewell said: “The message from Wales is clear – we must fix this geographical and ecological anomaly. The Welsh Parliament has backed Plaid Cymru’s calls for water to be fully devolved to Wales.
This is a historic call, which will go a long way towards righting the many of the wrongs suffered by Wales over our most abundant natural resource.
“The mechanism has been available to us since 2017 to gain the devolution of Water, but the Welsh government wrote to the UK Government to ask them to postpone the transferal of powers in 6 years ago.
That’s 6 years we’ve been waiting for this to happen. In that time, water rates have soared, our rivers have been polluted with sewage and water that has been exported from Wales at minimal cost, has been available to companies based in England to sell on at profit.
“The time has come to turn the tide: for our future water bills to be stabilised, the cleanliness of our rivers to be secured, and for Wales’ most abundant natural resource to be used to benefit the communities of Wales.”
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