Every day more than 3.3 billion litres of treated water – 20 per cent of the nation's supply and 234 million litres a day more than a decade ago – are lost through leaking pipes in England and Wales. The water lost would meet the daily needs of 21.5 million people.
Continuing dry weather this year has highlighted the need for action. In north-west England more than seven million people are subject to a hosepipe ban introduced by United Utilities earlier this month. Welsh Water has written to 50,000 customers asking for help in conserving supplies. Thames Water has launched a campaign aimed at persuading Swindon residents to use less water.
Trevor Bishop, the Environment Agency's head of water resources, argued that a leakage level of 10 per cent should be aimed for. "Zero leakage is not a possibility," he said. "Recently some water companies have started to raise the question on how far leakage reductions could go with the right incentives, investment and innovation, and looked at possibilities for reducing leakage by as much as half today's values. That would bring leakage down to 10 per cent, which is what you see in some European countries."
All credits go to the "Independent" for this news article.