The UK’s new £3.6bn plan to build three massive reservoirs after none built for 30 years | UK | News

The UK’s new £3.6bn plan to build three massive reservoirs after none built for 30 years | UK | News

Three new reservoirs are in the works, despite none having been built in the last 30 years. Scientists warned this week that the UK could face water shortages and hosepipe bans this summer, despite having had the wettest 18 months since records began.

The Environment Agency released a report predicting a growing shortfall of water due to the UK not storing water properly.

Experts have warned that climate breakdown will lead to the country being vulnerable to “all or nothing” rain patterns which will be experienced more frequently.

There have been no new major reservoirs built in the past 30 years, rivers are engineered to move water quickly which causes floods in urban areas, and wetlands have been drained and farmed or built on.

This means the water that falls in winter is not being stored properly in reservoirs, causing floods in the colder months and water shortages in summer.

This summer might see hosepipe bans put in place across the country. But three new water storage facilities are in the works, hoping to make a dent in the problem.

Portsmouth Water is planning a £340million reservoir near Havant to protect two of the country’s rarest chalk streams – the River Test and the River Itchen.

To reduce the amount of water taken from the rivers, which harms them, Southern Water needs an alternative source. The Havant Thicket Reservoir will take the surplus of water from the springs in winter and store it.

The reservoir would be able to hold about 8.7 billion litres of water when full and supply an average of 21 million litres of water each day. That’s enough water to supply about 160,000 people during an average year.

Anglian Water is investing in two new reservoirs, one in Lincolnshire and another in Cambridgeshire. They will together cost £3.3billion.

The company said they looked at where it might be best to build reservoirs across the region and identified rivers near Sleaford and the Fens near March as having enough water surplus in the winter.

They aim to secure a reliable supply of water for decades to come and help protect the surrounding communities from future climate events, such as hotter summers and droughts.

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