Action taken by Government to encourage the conservation of water

Water conservation is an essential element in managing the balance between water supply and demand. Under Section 81 of the Water Act 2003 the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has a duty to encourage water conservation and to report to Parliament every three years on actions taken to promote it as well as steps proposed for the future.

This report highlights how water conservation has developed during the reporting period AprilĀ 2010 to March 2013. It contains a snapshot of the many water conservation projects and initiatives carried out either directly by Government and its agencies or through partnership working. Many others have completed activities that are not mentioned in the report, all of which have played a role in helping to conserve water. The variations in weather during 2010 to 2013, including significant droughts and floods, together with projected increases in population and the potential impact of climate change, demonstrate how managing pressure on water resources is increasingly important. Overall demand for water from the public supply network has decreased by about 3% during the period of this report because of the improved efficiency of appliances, reduced industrial use and water efficiency activities. Household water use has decreased by about 6 litres per head per day. However, projections indicate that, in the long term, demand is likely to increase.

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DEFRA, behaviour change, water efficiency, water sensitive design, rainwater harvesting, greywater recycling, water stress

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