Water bills up by £30 to save wildlife

July 23, 2008 at 3:56 pm

The idea of our bills going up any further might sound like someone is having us on in this time of crisis, but it’s not a joke and it looks like the wildlife are going to be the biggest benefactors.

The Environment Agency have conducted a review and found that the water being taken from rivers and aquifers is damaging wildlife in the wetlands and the chalk rivers causing animals such as voles, and fish such as salmon, to get the thin end of the wedge. In total, the financial damage from changing the system could mean an extra £450 million goes on to the annual water bill, which is going to be as much as £30 more per household in some of the most seriously affected areas of the UK.

The water regulator Ofwat has been asked by the Environment Agency to propose an increase in bills in order to make way for new plans and they seem receptive to the idea. We could see a hose pipe ban in places in some of the lower land areas and could even see water being pumped from high ground in Scotland and Wales to the more dry areas in the south to stop water being taken from these protected areas.

The Environment Agency’s review has found that one in ten areas of water source near protected sites is causing problems to the wildlife population. The worry is whether, in this year of the credit crunch crisis, people have the same compassion they might have once had for the situation.

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