Water industry tackles supply issues
The Environment Agency has launched a plan to meet the water supply challenge posed by climate change and population growth.
The National Framework for Water Resources brings together industry, regulators and government to transform the way supplies are used and looked after. It aims to reduce demand, halve leakage, develop new supplies, move water to where it is needed and reduce the need for drought measures.
If action is not taken, it is predicted that, between 2025 and 2050, we will need more than 3.4bn additional litres of water per day to meet public demand. The framework suggests improving water efficiency across all sectors, working with water companies to halve leakage by 2050, and developing supplies such as reservoirs, water re-use schemes and desalination plants.
The framework also aims to make regional water transfers easier. It wants water companies to help consumers cut waste, in order to reduce average water use from 143 to 110 litres per day. Five regional groups will work on plans for their area, bringing together 17 English water companies, industry regulators, government and other users.
The framework sets out challenges that water-intensive industries are likely to face as a result of climate change, and how we can overcome them. It sets a greater level of ambition for restoring, protecting and improving the environment.