This week we’ve launched Water for Tomorrow, a new €4m cross-border project that will help to improve how local areas mitigate and adapt to the threats of increased future water scarcity and drought in England and France.
Water for Tomorrow is an EU Interreg France (Channel) England project which will develop and test innovative water management tools and decision-making support systems. These will enable more responsive short-term management of drought events, and better long-term planning, as well as investment in water management at a local scale.
The project will run in 5 pilot areas: Broadland Rivers catchment, Bretagne, Hauts-de-France, Cam and Ely Ouse catchment and East Suffolk catchment. The project will address challenges related to over-abstraction, increasing water demand, and decreasing water availability due to climate change.
In the East Anglian catchment areas, many of the rivers and aquifers are unable to meet the demand for water and the lack of available water already impacts on the environment, agriculture and public water supply. All of which comes at a cost to the region in terms of additional emergency expenditure, lost income and a depletion of natural capital.
Barry Bendall, Director for Operations at The Rivers Trust, said: “Water deficit is a shared problem which requires shared solutions. And as external pressures increase on our water systems it becomes vital for us to start working more collaboratively across the sectors and build a shared vision for how we plan for and respond to periods of water scarcity and drought. Drought is a recurring problem with a serious economic, social and environmental cost globally."
Water for Tomorrow will address these challenges by engaging with stakeholders from all sectors to co-design and test innovative operational management and planning tools and use smart technology to deliver multi-objective and cost-effective outcomes across the project. The best practice(s) identified in the project will be upscaled to other catchments and water management areas in France and England.
Carolyn Reid, Programme Manager for the Interreg France (Channel) England programme, said: “Water scarcity is a recurring problem with serious economic, social and environmental cost for the Channel area. The funding for this project, will help address this challenge and increase local resilience by bringing together relevant stakeholders to co-design innovative management tools and systems.”
The project has a total budget of €4m funding of which €2,8m has been co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund via the Interreg France (Channel) England Programme.
Partners involved in the Water for Tomorrow project are:
- The Rivers Trust (lead partner) - England
- Water Resources East - England
- The Environment Agency - England
- Bureau de Recherches Géologiques et Minières – France
Visit our Water for Tomorrow project page.