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Too much water for thirsty south

October 1, 2009 at 1:26 am

Government officials are to field a new advertising campaign, urging Britons to reduce their average water consumption by twenty litres a day.

Costing £1m, the scheme will draw attention to indulgent water use and its consequences; namely, the destruction of aquatic ecosystems throughout the UK.

Regulatory agency, Defra, otherwise known as the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, will orchestrate the campaign, which could force the installation of millions of water meters over the next few years.

Global Warming

Experts believe that British rivers are being put under pressure by an ever-increasing demand for fresh water from new-build houses. This is damaging the local environment and permanently reducing the quality of riverine and wetland sites around the UK.

Special criticism was reserved for the South of England. On an average day, wealthy Londoners use up to 24 litres more than householders in the North.

The campaign is also closely tied to the eternal battle against global warming – as 5% of carbon dioxide gases are produced from domestic water heating, Defra is keen to unite energy efficiency and water retention schemes under the same banner.

Leaky Pipes

Taxpayers are, of course, sceptical. Visitors to the Times Online website have complained about the conduct of major water companies, content to supplement their charges with maintenance fees, but lax in their efforts to fix leaky pipes.

As millions of litres of water are lost to bad plumbing every day, few householders can be blamed for withholding their promises to turn green and use a litre less for their morning cup of tea.

Defra advises customers to switch off the tap when brushing their teeth, and to fill kettles with ‘just enough’ water. Avoiding hosepipes and sprinklers, and cutting shower times by one minute could also help reduce the nation’s water bill.

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