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Improving Water Quality in the Tidal Thames

Improving water quality in the tidal Thames is a key goal under the Thames Vision. The PLA works with a variety of partners to achieve this goal through measures such as reducing litter in the river using our litter collectors, engaging with organisations part of the Thames Litter Forum and developing pollution prevention measures for the river. The PLA has a responsibility to safeguard the marine environment when dealing with emergency incidents such as an oil spill, therefore the PLA has developed a response plan in order to best protect the natural environment and ensure the safety on the river. The PLA is also responsible for maintaining navigable depths in the main channels of the tidal Thames, whereas, berth operators are responsible for the maintenance of their berths and approaches under the regulation of the PLA and in accordance with the Maintenance Dredging Framework.

Keeping the Thames Clean

We and our partners across the Thames community work to remove and monitor rubbish in the river.
Our goal is to see the cleanest Thames since the Industrial Revolution.
We take direct action to remove rubbish and other debris from the tidal Thames.
We actively review the foreshore to evaluate our efforts to protect the river.

Dredging in the Tidal Thames

Our approach to carrying out and licensing essential dredging operations to maintain safe navigation aims to minimise disruption to the delicate Thames ecosystem.

Consideration of maintenance dredging activities, both past and present, is an important part of the establishment of the dredging baseline.

The Port of London Authority developed a Maintenance Dredging Framework to guide decisions and ensure sustainability of this practice.

This forms the basis for any assessment of dredging impacts and is an important tool in the management of any future maintenance dredging in the tidal Thames.

Pollution Prevention Measures for the River

A wider approach to prevent pollution in the river and make the tidal Thames healthier for current and future generations.

Following these guidelines will help you manage your environmental responsibilities in line with our regulations and guidance for vessels.

The PLA-managed Thames Oil Spill Clearance Association provides a 24-hour response to oil spills between Tower Bridge and Canvey Island.

We're all responsible for protecting the Thames. Tell us when you see urgent issues that could harm the river or the animals that make their home in it.

Our regulations prevent the discharge of sewage into the Thames from specified vessels.

There are a number of options for a boat owner to comply with our sewage regulations.

Operators interested in providing a sewage pump-out service should be aware of a number of requirements.

More Information

Not found what you are looking for? Check our frequently asked questions or publications archive.

Frequently Asked Questions about the environment of the Thames.

It's vital that the public report environmental issues (pollution or animal in distress) on the tidal Thames.

Our reports and strategies outline our plans to protect and foster the Thames.

We've hosted in person and remote events to discuss developments as we work to improve the Thames.

Help us shape research to improve sustainable management of the tidal Thames.

Contact Us

The environment team will be happy to answer any questions.

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