National Infrastructure Assessment 1   |   Report

Preparing for a drier future

Improving the drought resilience of England's water supply.

Tagged: EnvironmentNational Infrastructure AssessmentWater & Floods

A reliable water supply is usually taken for granted, but England risks water shortages as a result of climate change, an increasing population (especially in the drier south and east) and the need to protect the environment.

The water supply system is already strained and the pressure will only rise over the coming decades. This report explores how best to meet this challenge.

The Commission’s central finding is that government should ensure increased drought resilience in England by enhancing the capacity of the water supply system. This will require a twin-track approach combining demand management (including leakage reduction) with long term investment in supply infrastructure.

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Preparing for a drier future: England’s water infrastructure needs

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Status:  Completed

National Infrastructure Assessment 1

An assessment of the United Kingdom's infrastructure needs up to 2050.

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Coming up in 2022
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Coming up in 2022

This page shows a calendar reflecting the latest expected dates for Commission reports, publications and events. You can also sign up to receive our quarterly newsletter by entering your email address in the box at the very foot of our homepage; or sign up to receive updates specifically on the programme for the second National...

22 Feb 2022 By
Armitt on drought resilience: fixing leaks, reducing demand, building supply
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Armitt on drought resilience: fixing leaks, reducing demand, building supply

In a comment piece for The Times’ Red Box, Commission Chair Sir John Armitt today sets out steps to help reduce the risk of future severe drought in England. The piece, reproduced below, argues for further action on identifying leaks, expanding water metering and reducing consumer demand, and building new supply and transfer infrastructure. Sir...

8 Aug 2022 By
Regional water plans a positive step towards drought resilience for England
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Regional water plans a positive step towards drought resilience for England

Commitments by water companies to take action together to secure long term water supplies for consumers and businesses in England have been welcomed by the Commission as an important step towards achieving long term resilience to drought. Consultations are now underway on new draft water resource management plans by the five regional water resources groups....

18 Jan 2022 By
Climate resilience focus welcomed in proposed water strategic policy statement
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Climate resilience focus welcomed in proposed water strategic policy statement

The National Infrastructure Commission has welcomed aspects of the draft Strategic Policy Statement for Ofwat, published today (22 July 2021). The statement sets out the government’s strategic priorities and expectations for Ofwat’s regulation of the water sector in England. Giles Stevens, Director of Policy at the National Infrastructure Commission, said: “Strategic policy statements play an...

22 Jul 2021 By
Public engagement needed for water usage plans to work, says Commission
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Public engagement needed for water usage plans to work, says Commission

Today (1 July) government has published a Written Ministerial Statement on steps to reduce personal water consumption. It follows a public consultation on the subject held in 2019, and outlines measures government intends to take to encourage water efficient products and introduce a more consistent approach to leakage. In response, a spokesperson for the National...

1 Jul 2021 By

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