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Cambridge Water launches new water saving campaigns



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Cam Valley Forum pennywort clearance on the upper Cam - part of Cambridge Water's PEBBLE project
Cam Valley Forum pennywort clearance on the upper Cam - part of Cambridge Water's PEBBLE project

Cambridge Water has launched the start of its 2020 water-saving campaign by asking customers to make changes to reduce their water use by 15 litres per day.

The water company, which provides water to over 351,000 people in the Cambridge area, is asking customers to help make sure there is enough water for the future and to protect the local chalk streams in the drier summer months.

As part of its Pledge15 initiative, Cambridge Water is promising to reduce the amount of water lost through leaks by 15 per cent through investing in replacement water mains and a smart network of pipes by 2025, and is asking customers to be as water-efficient as possible and pledge to reduce the amount of water they use by 15 litres each day. Customers who share the most popular pledges on the Cambridge Water’s social media accounts will win a water butt.

Phil Newland, managing director at Cambridge Water, said: “Water is a precious resource. We want to make sure there is enough water for future generations and to protect the environment. We will be launching a range of initiatives throughout the year to encourage customers to be water efficient, as well as reducing water lost through leaks and talking to developers about building water efficient homes. I can’t wait to see all the different ways that customers pledge to save water.”

Fifteen litres is about a bucket and a half of water, and a shower uses nine minutes of water per minute - so shortening your shower time is a good start. Turning off the tap while you brush your teeth could save 12 litres a day, and installing a water meter - it’s free - would also help. And if it seems odd to be paying for a utility you use less and less, think of the wildlife and biodiversity that will be saved for future citizens - and species - to enjoy.

But that’s not all from Cambridge Water: its PEBBLE fund, ‘Projects that Explore Biodiversity Benefits in the Local Environment’, has announced the beneficiaries of the latest round of funding.

Another Cambridge Water project at Cherry Hinton Brook to improve flow
Another Cambridge Water project at Cherry Hinton Brook to improve flow

Five charities and community groups will receive funding for projects, which will encourage and enhance biodiversity in over 19 hectares (equivalent to 19 rugby pitches).

· Wildlife Trust BCN has been awarded some funding for maintenance of Fulbourn Fen, a site of special scientific interest. The funds will support the removal of invasive weeds, which are damaging the chalk grassland on site.

· RSPB has received a grant for habitat restoration at Fen Drayton Lakes. The funds will be used to create a floating fence to stop predators reaching one of the islands, excavating the bank to provide a muddy habitat for birds, plus other habitat improvements.

· HI Trees Action Group will be creating 0.8ha of new woodland on the Histon and Impington Green Gateway, between the A14 and the entrance to the Histon village, to improve biodiversity purposes.

· Cambridge Hedgehogs will be creating hedgehog-friendly habitats in two church yards in Cambridge. The funds will provide wildflower areas, for invertebrates that the hedgehogs will eat, and equipment to help hedgehogs including homes and concrete water dishes.

· St Clements Church in Cambridge will be planting wildflower areas in its city centre church yard to improve biodiversity.

Icknield Primary School nature hotel project is opened by, from left, Anneka Stockdale, headteacher at Icknield Primary School; Ciaran Kelly, head of operations at Cambridge Water and councillor Clare Delderfield
Icknield Primary School nature hotel project is opened by, from left, Anneka Stockdale, headteacher at Icknield Primary School; Ciaran Kelly, head of operations at Cambridge Water and councillor Clare Delderfield

Since the launch of the Cambridge Water PEBBLE fund in 2016, more than 57 hectares - equivalent to 57 rugby pitches - have been improved.

Dan Clark, water resources and environment manager for Cambridge Water, said: “We want to make water count for the environment and recognise that we can play a big part in the conservation and enhancement of biodiversity. Increasing the variety of natural living things and the diversity of the habitats where they live, not only benefits wildlife, but will also enhance local communities and our open spaces.

"I’m looking forward to seeing how these projects are transformed thanks to the funding we have provided.”



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