Anglian Water have taken the latest steps in their project to construct a 310 mile water transfer pipeline with the formation of a new Strategic Pipeline Alliance.
The Strategic Pipeline Alliance is made up of Anglian and construction firms Costain, Jacobs, Mott MacDonald Bentley and Farrans, all of whom were successful bidders for parts of the £350 million contract to build the new pipeline in the east of England.
Anglian will use the pipeline to move water resources around their network. North Lincolnshire currently enjoys a water surplus at the same time as areas of Essex are threatened by dwindling supplies and droughts.
Supply problems in the south east are set to worsen over the next 50 years as a result of climate change and population growth.
The House of Commons Public Accounts Committee has even gone so far as to suggest that England’s taps could run dry by 2040 unless action is taken to protect supplies, perform emergency pipe repairs and find better ways to use water.
The new pipeline provides one solution. It will allow Anglian to take the surplus water in the north and transfer it to the south, where demand is greater, and resources are sparser.
How are we planning ahead to ensure the region’s water continues flowing for generations to come? We have announced the latest stage in a £350m plan to complete one of the largest strategic water infrastructure projects the UK has ever seen. More: https://t.co/Ql8nNCANSy
— Anglian Water (@AnglianWater) June 9, 2020
Strategic Pipeline Alliance director James Crompton said, “The challenges of population growth and a changing climate are felt nowhere more keenly than here in the East of England, which is one of the driest parts of the UK.”
“Starting this project is a significant part of our planned investment in the region over the next five years, which will begin to tackle those challenges and secure customer supplies well into the future.”
“The programme will make it possible to reduce the amount of water taken from the environment, as well as strengthening resilience by reducing the number of homes and businesses which rely on a single water source.”
“It will be a complex and challenging major infrastructure development. It presents an exciting opportunity for these civil engineering, design and construction experts and we’re delighted to have four such prestigious partners on board.”
“Each of our new partners bring not only a wealth of experience but they also bring new mindsets, thinking and innovation for what is an incredibly exciting project, but also collectively, one of the largest investments in our water infrastructure we’ve made in recent years.”
In its five-yearly review into the water industry released in December, the regulator Ofwat announced that there would be a £13 billion investment in improving the United Kingdom’s water infrastructure.
The Anglian Pipeline was the headline act with more water transfer schemes set to follow in the coming years.
Ofwat’s investment will also fund improvements to the reliability of critical facilities within the water network – such as aqueducts – and the resilience of pipelines which face the strain of being part of the main road or rail network.
Portsmouth Water meanwhile are pushing ahead with a new £100 million reservoir near Havant which will boost supplies for Hampshire and parts of West Sussex. A public consultation on the plans recently closed with over 1,600 responses.
The reservoir would hold 8.7 billion litres of water and supply up to 21 million litres of water each day. Should the project receive planning permission, it would be the first new reservoir to be built in south east England since the 1970s.
The 310 mile Anglian Pipeline will be the largest strategic on-shore pipeline project that the UK has seen. Both projects point to exciting times ahead for water infrastructure in Britain.