Skip to main content

Environment Agency has confirmed Drought status in eight of its 14 areas

12 August 2022

Reacting to today’s announcement that parts of the South West, Southern and Central England and East of England have moved into Drought status, Environmental Audit Committee Chairman, Rt Hon Philip Dunne MP, said:

Chair's comments

“It is deeply concerning that a drought has been declared in parts of England. Man-made climate change is speeding up the frequency and severity of heatwaves. As a result, we are witnessing rivers running dry and shrinking reservoir levels placing unprecedented pressure on our water supply.

In our 2018 inquiry considering the impacts of heatwaves on the UK, we recommended that a water-saving culture must be developed within households. One way of doing this is rolling out meters, which could potentially cut overall water demand by 21%.

At present, a massive 20% of our mains water supply is lost to leakage every single day: water companies are working to cut 50% of leakage by 2050, and appear on track to achieve this. But we may need to look more broadly at securing water resources across the UK. A resilient water supply is a national endeavour, but many householders can do our bit by installing a water meter to understand our own use of water, or capturing rainwater when it falls on the roof of our home, particularly if we are to experience longer periods of dry weather in the future.

We must not rest on our laurels that ‘enough’ is being done to tackle climate change: the severity and frequency of heatwaves must concentrate minds and lead to efforts being ramped up to adapt the way we use and appreciate water.”

Further information

Image: Pixabay