Posted: Thursday 10th June 2010

A seminar to debate water efficiency in Kent attracted 140 delegates from across the county, including representatives from councils, water companies, housing developers and environmental groups.

The average person in the South East uses about 160 litres of water every day, while at the same time the region is one of the driest in the UK. The seminar discussed water efficiency at a national level and then looked at the many successful projects in action in Kent.

The event held at Ashford International Hotel on Monday 12 April 2010 was arranged by the Institute of Water and the Kent Water Demand Management Group.

David Walton, 2009/10 President of the Institute of Water South East, said: “Kent is one of the areas of the UK where water is most scarce, with limited resource availability from rivers and reservoirs, and most of our water held in underground aquifers.

“During long periods of dry weather Kent can suffer from water shortages. It is important that we work together to find ways of not wasting water so we can secure supplies in the county not only today but for the future. This future is increasingly important considering the ambitious plans for growth and the impacts of a changing climate.”

Kevin Lynes, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development at Kent County Council, said: “We have 100,000 more residents in Kent than two decades ago and this development will continue over the next 20 years, which gives us a challenge to ensure there is enough water, but we can embrace the challenge and work together to meet it.

“Water is a critical subject for the county’s future. Not just for water companies, but for the public sector, private companies, in our own homes and communities. I hope we can come back again in 12 months and say that ‘We have made a difference for the county.’”

Jacob Tompkins, Managing Director of Waterwise, said: “Kent is doing some of the best work relating to water efficiency compared to other parts of the UK and this seminar is an example of just how high up the agenda this important issue is for the county.

“On average there is less water available in the county than Italy, Spain, and Greece, so it is very important that we all continue working together to ensure water is used wisely.”

Across Kent high water efficiency standards will be required for new homes and a number of projects are taking place to improve existing homes. These include: installing water efficient showers and taps, retrofitting older toilets so they have a dual flush option and providing customers with information about how they can be water efficient at home and in the garden.

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