Water Report Warns Of Flood And Drought Risk

The Government's failure to fix Britain's "broken" water system is increasing the risk of flooding and drought, a new report has warned.

The Blueprint for Water report says ministers are failing to produce a long-term, sustainable approach, which works with our natural water systems.

The document - produced by 16 leading environmental groups - says it took the wettest summer on record to avoid serious water shortages this year and more dry winters will put the UK back on drought alert.

The groups are recommending much greater use of moors, marshes and plants to store and claim rain water, which would help reduce the risk of drought and flooding.

They say simply allowing water to run straight into rivers seriously contributes to the risk of flooding in vulnerable areas.

The Blueprint for Water report measures the Government's performance against 10 steps to sustainable water by 2015.

The latest report scores ministers' performance no higher than a "C" grade on criteria including "waste less water", "price water fairly", and "stop contaminants polluting our water".

Carrie Hume, chair of the Blueprint for Water coalition, said: "Lack of action to fix our broken water system is a false economy.

"We cannot continue to lurch between flooding and drought which is damaging for people, businesses and wildlife."

The Government claims its draft Water Bill will improve the UK's water infrastructure by creating the conditions to "encourage innovation and reduce demand".