River monitoring goes green

Posted: Wednesday 23rd June 2010

The Environment Agency’s West Area Hydrometry and Telemetry team are ‘going green’ by installing solar and wind power on river monitoring stations across Shropshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire.

These stations collect river data and help provide vital flood warnings to people across the Midlands.

The new solar and wind power installations replace the alkaline batteries that previously powered the river stations. The manufacture and transport of alkaline batteries creates carbon which contributes to climate change. They also have a limited life and, at the end of their working lives they need to be disposed of at a specialist facility.

Using renewable energy means fewer site visits to replace batteries, less environmental impact and a huge saving in costs.

The first river stations have already been converted to green energy and many more will follow. All new stations are now automatically being considered for renewable energy sources.

Hydrometry and Telemetry Officer Rob Davies says “We are working hard to make where we live and work a better place, and to be more sustainable so that we use less of the planet’s non-renewable resources. This is a great example of what can be done by an organisation to reduce its impact on the environment and save money at the same time

“It is the mileage that we are saving that is brilliant, as well as the reliability of the new stations. It also gives us extra time to install new river monitoring sites and get more important river details such as flow, which means better information for us during flood events and a better flood warning service for local residents.”

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