From WaterBriefing

In a water industry first, South East Water has launched a new consultation on its first draft 25 Year Environment Plan.

The innovative plan sets out how fresh water only supplier, South East Water, will protect the environment for the next 25 years.

The draft 25 Year Environment Plan is the first of its kind to be written by any water company and includes contributions from customers, employees and other environmental organisations.

Not only will the plan set out how the drinking water only company will limit its own impact on the environment from which it draws raw water to treat, but more importantly, how it will improve the overall health of the environment and increase its resilience to the effects of drought, flooding and increasing demand for tap water.

The plan has been directly influenced by the water provider’s customers, employees and stakeholders through a series of online workshops throughout this year. It goes above and beyond traditional business plan cycles and exceeds statutory obligations.

In addition, the company, which supplies clean drinking water to 2.2 million people across the south east, aspires to deliver elements of the plan in partnership with other organisations and is seeking offers of support to do so as part of the consultation process.

Emma Goddard, Head of Environment for South East Water, said:

“Our environment is facing ever-increasing threats from issues such as climate change and population growth, but we know that making lasting, positive, change takes a long time – that’s why we’ve chosen to create the industry’s first 25 Year Environment Plan.

“Because we also know that the pressures on the environment are constantly changing, we’ll review this plan at least every five years so we are continually looking ahead to the next quarter of a century.

“As a water company, we rely on a clean and plentiful supply of water so it is crucial that we not only make sure our operations don’t negatively impact on the environment but that we also increase the environment’s resilience to the effects of climate change, such as drought and flooding.

“Just how we will do this is detailed in our draft 25 Year Environmental Plan, which we’ll be seeking feedback on as part of this public consultation.

“We are really keen to understand what the plan’s strengths are, as well as any areas of weakness or omission so i would encourage anyone interested to read our draft plan and have your say.”

The consultation is open until 6 May – click here to read the plan and submit comments

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