The ‘Statement of Response’ sets out the feedback received from nearly 1,000 customers and interested parties during a public consultation this summer on the company’s draft Water Resources Management Plan for 2015-2040. The response also shows where changes have been made to the plan as a result of new up-to-date information on population and housing growth forecasts and the feedback.
The revised plan is based on the company’s innovative new approach to plan for more serious droughts in the future than those experienced in the past, after this received strong support in the consultation (83%).
This will lead to a reduction in the use of water restrictions, such as hosepipe bans, to one in every 10 years on average and halve the risk of extreme restrictions, such as standpipes in the streets or rota cuts where water is only available for a few hours.
Customers also showed strong support for water efficiency (92%), water re-use (96%) and working with landowners and farmers to protect the quality of water in rivers (96%).
Meyrick Gough, Southern Water’s Strategy and Policy Manager, said:
“We were really pleased to receive such a wide-range of feedback on our plan and have spent the weeks since the consultation reviewing these and updating our plans.
“A big change is the introduction of much more water efficiency to help our customers save water, save energy and save money. We heard strong support for this and as our programme to install water meters for the majority of our customers is due to finish in 2015 then we need to continue to support our customers to make savings.”
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The revised plan will now see average water use reduce from the current 152 litres per person per day to below 130 litres by 2040.
Other key changes to the 25-year strategy include an increase in the amount of water needed by 2040, more leakage schemes in the first 10 years and final target of 78 million litres and a review of the schemes to supply Hampshire and the Isle of Wight as well as increasing supplies through the Cross Solent Main to the Isle of Wight
Customers can read or download a summary of the Statement of Response on the company’s website at www.swhaveyoursay.co.uk/wrmp, as well as the main Statement of Response and revised draft reports.