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10 May 19

Affinity Water warns of water shortages unless government acts now

The UK’s largest water only company, Affinity Water has warned that within the next 25 years and beyond, there may not be enough water due to climate change, population growth and increases in demand.

On Friday 10 May, Affinity Water became the first water company to use a unique public art installation, placing a large block of ice called ‘The Cold Hard Truth’ in front of St Albans Cathedral during the St Albans Sustainability Festival.

The giant block of ice will act as a rallying call to the public to get behind Affinity Water’s #WhyNotWater Manifesto and demand the right to water efficient housing and goods to help avert a national crisis.

The ice block represents the volume of 8,000 litres of water – the amount of water the average family of four uses in just two weeks.

However, unlike energy or other bills, most families are not aware what the cost is to them or to the environment. It’s estimated, that depending on the weather, the iceblock will take around four days to melt and the public are being invited to view it.

Jake Rigg, Director of Communications, Communities and Corporate Affairs at Affinity Water said: “We must act now to avert a crisis. We need to increase the supply of water through new options and by moving water between areas and by reducing demand. The most effective way of doing this is by introducing a mandatory water efficiency labelling scheme as without this we will have a crisis on our hands.

“It is clear that if we do not rise to this challenge, we will not be ready for drought which the National Infrastructure Commission estimates could cost up to £40 billion2. I’m not willing to play Russian roulette with our children’s future.

“We need to work in collaboration with Government, the water companies, and civil society but with fierce urgency. That is why we have launched this campaign.

“Consumers are used to energy labelling in Britain and manufacturers have responded by reducing the energy consumption of white goods. We have this for energy, why not water?

“All we are asking for is a common-sense approach to water.”

Water efficiency is critical in the South East – a severely water stressed area. Environment Agency CEO, Sir James Bevan recently warned that the water crisis was like ‘looking into the jaws of death’3 and the forces of climate change and population growth could mean severe water shortages within the next 25 years.

To combat this challenge, Affinity Water’s #WhyNotWater manifesto will call on people to support its campaign to demand key changes to legislation and policy to empower them to save water and energy, helping to conserve the natural environment.

The #WhyNotWater Manifesto:

  • Mandatory water efficiency labelling so that consumers are able to make informed choices about the appliances they purchase.
  • Rights for tenants to request that their landlords install water saving measures so that they are able to enjoy water efficient homes
  • Ensuring fixtures and fittings meet minimum standards through mandatory certification e.g. WRAS or KIWA to avoid wasting water.
  • Every Local Plan in a severely water stressed area should include the target of 110 litres per person per day

To find out more about the manifesto visit www.whynotwater.co.uk and to sign a petition to demand the legislation needed for water efficient labelling and water efficient goods and housing visit www.affinitywater.co.uk/ourpetition

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Our Communications team handles all media enquiries on behalf of Affinity Water and its employees.

Contact us on 01707 277 110 or email news@affinitywater.co.uk.

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