SVT to add 95Ml/d of ‘low-carbon’ water supplies

Severn Trent has unveiled plans to add up to 95 million litres of water supplied via low-carbon processes to its network by 2025 to tackle water scarcity threats.

The company will use nature-based solutions and innovative technology to lessen pressures on abstraction, especially from non-sustainable sources.

SVT said the new capacity will ensure security of supplies with a minimum of 68 megalitres a day, reaching up to 95 megalitres when required.

The move away from carbon intensive abstraction and pumping forms part of the company’s plan to reach carbon net zero by 2030.

Nature-based technology will pre-treat water, rivers will transport it and SVT is exploring the use of ceramic membranes and innovative technologies that require fewer chemicals and use less energy than traditional methods to treat water. It said this would reduce carbon and set a precedent for treating water.

The project is one of six that Severn Trent has launched following its £566 million Green Recovery Programme bid.

Chief executive Liv Garfield said with just over a month to COP26, everyone must play a part in addressing the impacts of climate change including re-evaluating our relationship with water.

“This project will see us boosting the resilience of water supplies across our region, and while we still all need to be mindful of how we use water – it will see less disruption for customers during heat waves when the country is basking in record breaking temperatures,” Garfield said.

She added: “Even though this scheme is in its early stages, I’m hugely confident that this, along with our other Green Recovery schemes, our Great Big Nature Boost commitments, and the partnerships and investments all outlined in our strategy, this will be the catalyst for change, and help other industries and influencers when it comes to understanding how they do their bit in looking after the planet.”

Alongside the low-carbon water supplies, the company set out plans for using nature based solutions to keep storm water out of the sewer system in its Great Big Nature Boost report. This includes the creation of urban wetlands and green basins that allow natural drainage.