CPRE Hampshire responds to Southern Water’s Water for Life consultation

27th April 2021

Like you may have done, CPRE Hampshire has responded to Southern Water’s consultation, Water for Life. Briefly, this asks people to respond to their plans to reduce the 75 million litres per day predicted shortfall.

CPRE Hampshire wants to protect the rivers and the aquifers from which they get their water. All solutions mentioned in the questionnaire have a wide variety of problems and positives.

These are our main points:

One method of finding ‘new’ water is desalination. The proposed site is at Ashlett Creek near Fawley. We are concerned about many aspects including the landscape impact, noise, the impact on marine systems of the inflow of water and the outflow of saline water and chemicals from the plant. If this goes ahead all water produced should go into the domestic supply not to industry.

Another solution is to recycle water, in other words to clean up the water part of the effluent that comes through the waste water system and put it back into the rivers to be abstracted and cleaned. This does not create a new source of water and may have knock on effects on the rivers. However, it uses plant at existing treatment works so has a low landscape impact.

Water transfer from other companies is possible but robbing Peter to pay Paul seems wrong and the longevity of the arrangements is open to question. However, the construction of the reservoir at Havant Thicket seems a possible partial solution as Portsmouth and Southern have agreed an arrangement to share the stored water from very plentiful springs. We prefer this solution to others and it is already beyond the planning stage. Leakage and demand reduction are sorely needed too.

While CPRE Hampshire applauds Southern Water’s stated desire to protect rivers and aquifers, we deeply regret the time it has taken to get to this stage in planning additional water resources for Hampshire.

Meanwhile, we all need to reduce our water use to Target 100, ie 100 litres per person per day. Average use is still nearer 150 litres per person per day!

Moya Grove
April 2021

CPRE Hampshire response to Water for Life consultation

Boy fishing river
Hilary Fenten
Children climbing in the New Forest