Drought-hit water firm may buy in supplies


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The Independent Online

The hosepipe ban has put certain water firms under such pressure that at least one is considering deals with other companies across the country.

The Midlands-based water company Severn Trent is finalising plans to sell 30 million litres of water a day to Anglian Water – one of the seven companies that imposed a hosepipe ban last week – to help to ease the shortage, it was reported last night.

Plans are under way to trade water between the two regions for the first time to supply more than 100,000 homes in the worst-hit areas, The Daily Telegraph reported. The move is likely to fuel speculation that a national grid could eventually become a solution should the water crisis continue.

Severn Trent plans to flow water from sources beneath Birmingham into the river Tame, which joins the Trent. The water will then flow to Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, where Anglian Water will take it up.

Seven water companies introduced restrictions on water use last week following one of the driest two-year periods on record.

Domestic customers face a £1,000 fine if they use their hosepipe in defiance of the ban.

Thames Water, Southern Water, South East Water, Anglian Water, Sutton and East Surrey, Veolia Water Central and Veolia Water Southeast brought in restrictions affecting about 20 million residents.