Reeding towards a sustainable future
Reed bed technology is set to play an integral part in helping water companies comply with the WFD regulations and help them meet AMP5 targets. And in Wales, Forced Bed Aeration is already making a difference.
Green route to developing Africa
Many assume that multinationals investing in developing countries abandon their environmental principals in the quest for a fast buck. But, on a recent trip to East Africa, Tom Idle was surprised to find cement giant Lafarge is going to extraordinary lengths to apply green principals in this dynamic emerging market
Work with nature, not against it
The effects of urbanisation and industrialisation on the fragile balance between land and water have been known for many years. Ciwem's Nick Reeves believes a fundamental shift in attitudes and practices is needed to prevent these finite resources from irrevocable depletion.
Lessons on drought from down under
Singapore and Australia are each battling their own water resource problems. A British Water global mission visited both countries to see how they are dealing with the issue. Dr Ian Pallett reports.
Understanding the Blueprint
The coalition that produced the Blueprint for Water has insisted it is not directly criticising water companies or Ofwat in its ten-point plan of action to solve the country's water crisis. Rather, it is an attempt to look at the 'totality of water management'. Sally Nash reports.
Suds: Breaking down barriers
New planning guidance will mean better landscaping as developers will have to consider sustainable drainage systems. Richard Whale, chair of EIC's Water Pollution Control Working Group, reports
Sino-Dutch team develops Yellow River plan
Conflicting demands on water resources for urban and agricultural uses, combined with a variable rainfall pattern, is seriously impacting on livelihoods and the environment in the central part of the Yellow River basin in north-east China. Robert Smit and Koen Roest of Wageningen University & Research Centre (WUR), in The Netherlands, report on a Dutch-Chinese partnership project that is investigating options for groundwater and surface water management in the region.
Chambers transforming decentralised treatment
The need for onsite wastewater treatment (WWT) in North America has been driven by high land prices and environmental regulation. Dennis F Hallahan, technical director of US WWT specialist Infiltrator Systems explains how innovations in the technology make it suitable for a wide range of applications.
Mekong modelling project benefits SE Asia
Finnish environmental experts have teamed up with the Mekong River Commission's Water Utilisation Programme in a project that combines modelling technology with social research and training to improve knowledge and management of one of the world's largest river basins. As Ilona Suojanen of WUP-FIN explains, this knowledge can be used in future projects in the region.
Reuse, reduce, recycle
Water-reuse seems a logical solution to increasing water shortages. But would industrial, commercial and residential customers best be served by a entralised or decentralised water-reuse system? Alan Rimer, Cindy Wallis Lage and Frank Rogalla of Black & Veatch report
Keeping flamingos in the pink
With tens of thousands of visitors flocking to see its flamingos and their other water companions, the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust must try to keep the ponds clean and odour-free. Is using recycled glass for filtration the answer?
What lies beneath
Martin Preene discusses the carbon-reducing benefits of heat-pump technology. Unlike geothermal methods, it can extract even moderate heat from the earth - while cooling it
Aral Sea Project I reaching completion
Images of fishing boats stranded on the desertified, salt-encrusted bed of what was formerly the Aral Sea, the world's fourth largest inland lake, caused widespread shock when they came to public attention in 1997. Michael Haigh, divisional director in Mott MacDonald's Water and Environmental Management division, reports exclusively for World Water on the first phase of the Aral Sea Basin Project, which is designed to secure the existence of the North Aral Sea, sustain and increase agriculture and fishing, and improve human health.
Water efficiency is key in California
The USA's independent environmental think-tank, the Pacific Institute, has just released a report that claims that efficiency measures could reduce statewide water use in 2030 by 20%, despite economic and population growth. Research associate, Heather Cooley, and president of the Institute, Peter H Gleick, explain how efficiency, conservation and technology could create a sustainable future.
Edie Environmental Legislation Summary (April 06)
Recent changes to legislation which will impact on the environmental sector in the UK, Europe and internationally come under the spotlight in this Semple Fraser and Edie News monthly round-up of new law and policy. Among the developments this month we see revisions to EU clean water rules with a new version of the Bathing Water Directive, while in the UK new ETS allocation rules provide for pre-2004 installations.
SUDS - where there's a will...
The use of sustainable urban drainage has been limited to flood risk management. However, the EIC's Water Pollution Control Working Group believes further benefits can be provided and is publishing a paper - the SUDS Position Paper - outlining what those are. Richard Whale explains.
Stephen Bolt looks at the far-reaching implications that the conclusion of the Water Framework Directive is likely to bring
Intergration or inundation
Barrie Clarke of Water UK says the fear of flooding is putting pressure on planners and policy-makers to work together
Defra awards £100K for flood management
A dozen Internal Drainage Boards (IDBs) in England have been awarded Defra funding to carry out projects which manage flood risk and protect local wildlife.
Prince Philip to celebrate 25 years of honorary fellowship
The Duke of Edinburgh will be celebrating 25 years honorary fellowship of the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM) at a reception at Buckingham Palace next week (October 11).
New European wastewater treatment technologies might help Florida, which is pursuing tighter discharge consents to sensitive surface waters, says Frank Rogalla of Aqualia
Innovative wetland system gains ground
A technology designed for wetland treatment of landfill leachate can help optimise other wetland sites, say Craig Fannin, associate director, and Paul Danes, senior consultant, with AMEC's UK Earth & Environmental business
Conference maps UK water policy
Following two highly successful water conferences in 2009 and 2010, Future Water returns on 13 July 2011. The one-day national policy conference will be held at the Royal Geographical Society in London, and will bring together policy makers, industry leaders and stakeholders to map solutions for the challenges facing the water sector.
St Germans pumping station keeps fens flood-free
The 100m3/s capacity pumping station at Wiggenhall St Germans in Norfolk has now been formally opened by Lord James Russell, marking the culmination of this huge construction and flood defence project. Atkins’ John Sheppard explains.
Britain must prioritise and invest in natural capital, says Aldersgate Group
A major new report released today (17 November) calls on the UK Government to support businesses investing in natural capital by improving policy integration to reduce costs and promote growth.
Irish ocean energy firm makes waves in US
An Irish company has secured funding from the US government for further development of ocean energy technology.
New plan backs marine energy for 15M homes
The Government has announced plans to harness the power of the sea to generate electricity for up to 15m homes.
A case of clouded thinking?
Sustainable drainage systems could play a vital role in a range of water management uses. But the Flood & Water Management Bill going through Parliament is just not recognising their potential, says Bob Sargent.
Developers can no longer ignore SUDS. Which is why manufacturers have such an important role to play in developing adoptable solutions, says Mike Shaw.
Water vole sightings double
The UK's fastest declining mammal the water vole is making a return to the nations waterways.
Climate change adaptation needs human focus
Delegates from the universities of Cambridge and California San Diego met with politicians at the Global Water Initiative conference to develop an action plan for adaptation to the impacts of regional climate change on African water supplies.
Australia releases billions of litres of water to protect parched environment
Australia's drought-plagued Murray-Darling river basin is to receive respite in the form of 3.1 billion litres of water.
Back to the future
Re-inventing CSOs and implementing SUDs are key to meeting WFD challenges. Professor David Balmforth, technical director of MWH, explains why
South Staffs Water boss is new EU Skills chairman
South Staffordshire Water managing director Jack Carnell is the new chairman of Energy & Utility Skills (EU Skills), the Sector Skills Council (SSC) for the gas, power, waste management and water industries. He has taken over from John Wybrew, who has been chairman for the past five years.
WYG Ireland to provide national groundwater data
The international multi-disciplinary consultant WYG Ireland has been contracted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide groundwater quality data to help in the national assessment of Ireland's groundwater.
Conservation: pressure's on to solve drainage issue
The floods two years ago, and resultant damage, remain fresh in the public's memory. With parts of the country severely water stressed, will the new measures being mooted for conserving water actually help to ease storm flooding?
Adventurous people wanted for Water Industry Cup
WaterAid is calling on teams to compete for the Water Industry Cup at this year's Cisco Euro Challenge to raise funds for charity.
Gentle approach was needed
Grontmij’s technical manager, Harriet Carlyle, and the consultancy’s former head of ecology, Simon James, explain how potential hydro-ecological impacts of a utility’s water abstractions were assessed using modelling
Fresh take on an old idea
There is nothing new about rainwater harvesting - it has been with us for centuries. Dr Ian Pallett looks at the need to take this old concept into the future - for the sake of sustainability - and at the regulations and technologies involved.
Taking the more natural approach to sewage
David Barrett of natural wastewater treatment solutions provider ARM discusses the use of reed bed technology in sewage treatment in partnership with water companies across the UK
A drop more sustainability
Merlin Hyman, director of the Environmental Industries Commission, takes a looks at strategies affecting the future of our water, and reckons Ofwat should be setting itself wider sustainable development responsibilities
Greener guidance for Ofwat
Defra has launched a consultation on the draft statutory Social and Environmental Guidance to Ofwat as part of the Water Strategy. Merlin Hyman discusses the EIC's reaction to it.
Making SUDS standard practice
The problem with the uptake of Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS) is not one of technology, writes Bob Sargent, vice chair of the EIC's Water Pollution Control Working Group
Fighting the failure of sustainable drainage
Despite the essential role of sustainable urban drainage systems, they are not being taken up as they should. So the EIC has presented recommendations to government to encourage their adoption. Bob Sargent reports.
Anglian throws down climate change gauntlet to suppliers
If suppliers don't clean up their acts and join with Anglian Water's efforts to lower carbon emissions, the utility will stop doing business with them. But, as Maureen Gaines found out, the suppliers are more than eager to accept the challenge.
£15k to save newt 'ludicrous' says council
Cheshire County Council has hit out at EU rules requiring it to find a new home for newts found on school land where building work is planned, arguing that a bill amounting to £15,000 per newt is 'ludicrous'.
Sea defences not enough to protect delta cities from rising flood risk - study
Rich nations spend huge sums to keep the seas at bay but wealth may not save them indefinitely.
Wetlands experts debate impact of flooding on biodiversity
Experts on the UK's wetlands gathered in force at the World Wetlands Day Conference 2008, hosted by the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM), to debate the future role of wetlands. Colin Studholme, from Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust, and Duncan Huggett, from the Environment Agency, took the floor to discuss the impact of flooding on wetlands. Their speeches can be heard on edie audio.
Concerns raised over role of wetlands
Flood risk management and the protection of biodiversity are not necessarily compatible functions of wetlands, a leading figure from the Environment Agency has said.
Dredging up Trouble: Government urged to resist 'playing politics' over flood prevention
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) must turn its focus away from dredging towards other proven flood-prevention measures if it wants to avoid another catastrophic winter.
£18m cash boost for Glasgow flood defences
Grants totalling £18million are to be poured into Glasgow's flood defences over the next four years, Scottish government ministers have announced.
Thumbs up for plan to restore and protect Louisiana coast
A coastal protection and restoration plan for the state of Louisiana has been given the go-ahead by the Louisiana's state legislature, following the devastations of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005.
EU lawmakers agree new flood directive
A Europe-wide flood management policy came a step closer to realisation after the EU Parliament and Council approved the Floods Directive this week.
Aral Sea 'making good recovery'
The Aral Sea is recovering faster than expected as the dam built in 2005 continues to bring the desired effects, according to the World Bank, which funded the Kok-Aral dam project.
Coca-Cola tackles water scarcity with Danube restoration project
Coca-Cola Enterprises has reinforced its global water stewardship efforts in a ground-breaking collaboration with WWF to restore vital wetlands and floodplains along the Danube River.
Poland's motorway through peatlands on hold
Plans to build a motorway across one of Europe's last remaining unspoilt peatlands were put on hold until August, as Polish law forbids construction work within the nature reserve during the bird breeding season which started on March 1st.
Poland faces court over motorway through protected wetlands
The EU threatened legal action against Poland on Tuesday over the construction of a motorway that would destroy Europe's only remaining ancient peat land if built.
Road builders told they could be heading for fines
Polish campaigners are trying a new tactic to thwart plans to build a motorway through protected wetlands by telling construction companies they could be forced to pay for the environmental damage they cause.
Shell points to 'resource resilience' for future cities
Shell has called for more co-operation and collaboration within cities to build resilience to growing pressures on global energy, food and water systems.
Water meters, quotas and fines to solve 'water crisis'
Water meters for all homes and a "huge increase" in fines for polluting are needed to save Britain's rivers and wetlands, an alliance of conservation and angling groups has said.
SMEs receive £1.3m to spur on bioenergy technology
The Government is encouraging innovation in sustainably sourced bioenergy by providing British companies with £1.3m, Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker announced today.
Natural Capital - the missing piece of the economic jigsaw
There is a growing realisation among some businesses and policy makers that economics has failed to take account of a third form of capital, natural capital, says Claire Wansbury and Rupert Haines.
In conversation with Autodesk's Emma Stewart
In this week's 'In conversation', edie speaks to one of the company's leading innovation in 3D design, engineering and software. Autodesk's head of sustainability solutions, Emma Stewart, talks about the next steps in sustainable innovation.
EU must 'redouble efforts' on water efficiency or risk undermining economy
Europe needs to redouble its efforts on water efficiency and price water to reflect purifying and transportation costs, according to a new report by the EEA.
Water awards call for entries
News in Brief
Two new awards join RSA stable
News in Brief
Welsh Water raises investment to improve quality of rivers and wetlands
Dwr Cymru Welsh Water (DCWW) is investing a further £150,000 into environmental projects that aim to improve the quality of Welsh rivers, lakes and wetlands.
EXCLUSIVE: 'Support from the top' helping National Grid transform sustainably
National Grid is currently undergoing a colossal infrastructure transformation and for this to be sustainable, board level support and employee engagement is vital, says climate change manager Clare Naunton.
Essex fields flooded to create 'biggest' wetland
Over 100 hectares of fields on Wallasea Island in Essex were returned to the sea to make Britain's biggest man-made salt marsh, compensating for wetlands lost through port developments.
Scottish Water fined over pollution incident in Renfrewshire
Scottish Water has been fined £20,000 after a sewage spill from the Lochwinnoch Sewage Treatment Works located adjacent to Castle Semple Loch in Renfrewshire.
Why being green means thinking blue for Volkswagen
Waterless technology, rainwater harvesting, Platinum LEED certification and the largest solar PV array of any car manufacturer in the US, Rob Bell finds out what's driving VW's 'Think Blue.Factory' strategy at its Chattanooga facility stateside
'Soft' approach offers water security and flood protection for business
Businesses are in danger of relying too heavily on technological solutions for sustainable water management and need to take a more holistic approach in strategic planning.
Lack of government action increases UK water risk
The risk of flooding and water shortage in 2013 has increased because the Government has been 'too slow' in taking action to improve water management in the UK, warn environmental leaders.
EA reflects on its past and looks forward to cleaner environment
The Environment Agency celebrated its milestone tenth anniversary this week and spoke to edie about past successes and hopes for the future.
DECC rolls out wetland biomass funding
Shares in a £2m Government subsidy have been offered to entrepreneurs in the UK aimed to spur on innovation in bioenergy.
Wetlands latest casualty in China's water crisis
Eighty per cent of the wetlands around the Haihe river in northern China have been sucked dry by industry and a growing population, Xinhua news agency reported this week, in the latest development of the country's water crisis.
Parched England thrown watery lifeline
A major new project which will span five decades is to be launched in an effort to turn the tide on Englands disappearing wetlands - a valuable water resource.
VIDEO: The river's edge - a journey of transformation
The team working on the rivers and wetlands of the Olympic Park, one of Europe's biggest greening projects, faced numerous challenges, explains Ruth Boyle of engineering consultancy Atkins
Dams destroy environment, group warns
Dams are continuing to cause excessive environmental damage despite recommendations from the World Commission on Dams to ensure environmental consideration.
Water levels still below 'normal' despite heavy rain fall
Water levels in natural storage basins deep below the ground are in most cases still below "normal" despite the recent heavy rain fall.
Planning to protect biodiversity and geology
Valuable habitats such as ancient woodland, heaths, wetlands, and meadows will be given extra protection under a new planning policy published this week.
Olympics: London's largest remediation project can now begin
A stark warning
With more than a thousand eminent scientists agreeing we are living beyond the capacity of the planet to support us, CIWEM executive director Nick Reeves asks can we learn to live within environmental limits?
CIWEM calls for Living Wetlands awards
CIWEM and RSPB are calling for entries to the 2006 Living Wetlands Award to reward projects that demonstrate the multiple functions and sustainable use of wetland habitats.
HSBC releases guidelines on investment in freshwater infrastructure
HSBC has launched guidelines governing its project finance activities in the freshwater infrastructure sector.
Twelve months ago, ERM's Alistair Fulton wrote for Environment Business on the environmental challenges facing the new EU Members States. This month we asked him how things have progressed
Water planning will clash with farming and wildlife, consultancy predicts
Water resource planning issues will clash with environmental legislation; dramatic increases in winter rainfall and even greater decreases in summer rainfall will force farmers to introduce wetlands and new water management techniques; and water shortages and hosepipe bans will become regular annual events.
Waste laws non-compliance: Case C-494/01 Commission v Ireland
Judgement was given in the above case on 26 April 2005. The case concerned alleged instances of non-compliance with the EU waste laws following twelve complaints received by the Commission against Ireland.
Reed bed research offers wastewater solution
The Kyoto Protocol on energy consumption and the EU Water Framework Directive on water pollution are driving a new EU LIFE Environment funded research project which aims to bring the concept of tertiary wastewater treatment, using renewable bioenergy, closer to commercial application. Alex Hutchinson, environmental scientist at WRc Group, UK, explains.
Environmental disruption in the Danube
Romanian opposition to the reopening of the Bystraya Canal on the Ukrainian side of the Danube delta is creating a potentially explosive dispute between the two neighbouring countries.
Green scheme to shift subsidy from production to protection
Farmers are being given the chance to live up to their self-proclaimed title of 'guardians of the countryside', with the launch of the Environmental Stewardship Scheme.
Iraq's marshes could be restored say scientists
Studies of the Iraqi Mesopotamian marshes have found that they could be partially restored and a valuable wetland environment recreated, provided sufficient water resources are made available.
Exploring catchment management
Justin Taberham of CIWEM and Bob Earll of Coastal Management for Sustainability offer some insight into the progress of river basin management plans in the UK
In the run-up to an election CIWEM executive director Nick Reeves is concerned that the short-term thinking of politicians is putting water supplies at risk...
Reed all about new systems
Angus Marland of Rockbourne Environmental reports on the recent use of constructed wetlands for sewage treatment
Testing the grey matter
Cranfield's selection of technologies for grey water recycling and reuse
Shakespeare's father was mayor and alderman of Stratford-upon-Avon. He was also a butcher and a skinner, making leather goods as a by-product of his butchery. A by-product of skinning was a rather unpleasant substance that had to be disposed of. On at least two occasions Shakespeare senior was prosecuted for depositing this noxious material into a tributary of the River Avon and for other related land management misdemeanours. So serious was the transgression that the punishment involved loss of mayoral office and imprisonment.
Chinese wetlands protection extended
Wetland conservation in China has received a boost in the form of nine new protected sites, covering a total of 400,000 hectares.
Water and wastewater: 2004 in review
Debate in the world of water and wastewater during 2004 largely focused on the industry pricing review and what customers would be expected to pay, and what improvements they could expect to see, over the five year period between 2005 and 2010.
English and Welsh rivers will fail quality standards of framework directive
The ecological quality of Britain's rivers, lakes, estuaries and coastal waters is so bad that many could fail the standards imposed by the EU Water Framework Directive, new figures from the Environment Agency suggest.