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Water Resources In England And Wales Notes

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HOW DO HUMAN ACTIVITIES INFLUENCE SUPPLY AND DEMAND?
Water resources in England and Wales Current state and future pressures 2008

Available Water

Freshwater resources

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Annual average rainfall over England and Wales is 890 mm

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Nearly half lost by evaporation Leaves average of 465 mm for runoff to rivers and streams or for percolation to groundwater =
amount remaining is effective rainfall Large variation in effective rainfall Crucial to manage water resources carefully during dry periods

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Using in England and Wales

Using freshwater resources

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England and Wales uses only 10% of freshwater resources for abstraction

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This measure is known as the Water Exploitation Index

Water

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Water resources are considered to be 'under stress' or over stretched if this index is more than 20%

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South Eastern

East and England classified area stress

as an 'under from water

abstraction', with more than 22% of freshwater resources abstracted

Available water resources

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The water resources that are available for abstraction are assessed through Catchment Abstraction Management Strategies (CAMS) CAMS considers how much freshwater resource is reliably available, how much water the environment needs and the amount of water already licensed for abstraction = shows us where water is potentially available for abstraction

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There are considerable pressures on water resources throughout England and Wales, not just in the drier South East and Eastern England There are many catchments where there is no water available for abstraction at low flows Some catchments are over licensed or over-abstracted = need to restore a sustainable abstraction regime

Abstraction Uses

60,000 mega litres per day abstracted from UK in 2006/7 Little change in the total abstracted over the period 2000/01 to 2006/07 Abstraction from groundwater has remained fairly constant, at around 10% of the total 75% + of the total abstracted from groundwater is used for public water supplies The amount abstracted from tidal waters has increased over the period with most used to support electricity generation

Water is abstracted from freshwater sources for a wide range of uses in England and Wales In 2006/07, more than 73,000 Ml was licensed of which approximately 35,000 Ml was abstracted Water companies abstract almost half of the total amount taken from non-tidal waters but return over 70% as treated effluent which enhances river flows The annual amount abstracted for public water supply has not varied much between 2000/01 to 2006/07

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Abstraction from freshwater sources to support electricity generation (hydropower and power station cooling water) has declined significantly Water abstracted for other industrial uses has fluctuated over the same period, but has shown a steady decline since 2003/04 Differences between different parts of England and Wales 75% of water abstracted in Wales in 2006 was to support electricity generation with 20% taken for public water supply

Farmers use less than 1% of the total amount of water abstracted in England and Wales for spray irrigation The biggest demand for spray irrigation is in East Anglia Abstraction can average 20% of the total for all uses over a typical summer Nearly all the water used for spray irrigation is used by crops or lost by evaporation and can therefore have a much greater impact on the environment compared to other forms of abstraction where water is returned after it has been used

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