Water must be metered, engineers say
Michael McCarthy, formerly the Independent’s longstanding Environment Editor, now its Environment Columnist, is one of Britain’s leading writers on the environment and the natural world. He has won a string of awards for his work, including Environment Journalist of the Year (three times) and Specialist Writer of the Year in the British Press Awards in 2001. In 2007 he was awarded the Medal of the RSPB for “Outstanding Services to Conservation,” in 2010 he was awarded the Silver Medal of the Zoological Society of London, and in 2011 the Dilys Breeze Medal of the British Trust for Ornithology. In 2009 McCarthy published Say Goodbye To The Cuckoo (John Murray), a study of Britain’s declining migrant birds.
Thursday 07 June 2012
Water metering should be introduced across the UK to help tackle water shortages, which will only get worse unless action is taken now, Britain's civil engineers say today.
A metering system that charges households more for high water use for non-essential activities such as cleaning the car, with "social tariffs" to protect vulnerable customers, is one of a number of measures urgently needed to relieve Britain's growing water crisis, according to the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE).
These range from building new reservoirs to making it easier to share resources between water companies and encouraging homeowners to save water. In its report entitled The State of the Nation: Water, the ICE calls for a special task force to be set up to produce a plan for securing the country's water supplies by 2014.
This year's drought has highlighted the problems affecting the UK's supplies, which, despite the recent heavy rain, are at a "critical" point, the ICE warns. "We are a populous nation facing a growing gap between what we can supply and what our water users need," said Michael Norton, chair of the ICE water panel.
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