The film, showing sewage discharges, accompanies a report from the water company setting out their case for the building of the sewer.

The 22-page report, ‘Why does London needs the Thames Tunnel?’ outlines why Thames Water believes it is crucial to the long-term environmental, social and economic importance to the capital.

Thames Water’s external affairs and sustainability director, Richard Aylard, said: “It is important that Londoners are fully aware of just how serious the situation has become, and why the Thames Tunnel is a key part of the overall, long-term solution.

“The report, film and animation we are releasing today aim to summarise the need for the project as clearly and simply as possible, so that everyone can have an understanding of what the project is about and why it is important.”

It is unlikely, though, to sway protestors living in the London boroughs that will be affected by the construction.

Earlier this week an independent commission led by Lord Selborne was set up to examine the issues around the project.

In addition to residents’ concerns about the construction works, the Thames Tunnel Commission will look at the cost and whether it represents value for customers. It will also evaluate whether the tunnel offers the most effective and most environmentally sound solution to the London’s sewage problems.

Lord Selborne said: “I welcome the opportunity to pose the questions that millions of water bill payers are starting to ask.

“The key question is whether this multi-billion pound project is the best solution to making the Thames cleaner or whether there are sensible alternatives that are cheaper, greener and less disruptive.”

The commission includes representatives from the Consumer Council for Water, engineers and the US-based National Resources Defense Council.

Alison Brown

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