Year of work to install almost 3km of pipeline gets under way next week
PUBLISHED: 08:16 18 October 2019
A £6.5m overhaul of the way the county's drinking water is sourced gets under way next week - and will take a whole year to complete.
On Wednesday, Anglian Water engineers will set about installing almost three kilometres of new pipelines to carry water from Norwich to Ludham, in a project vital to maintain supplies to 3,000 homes.
Currently, the region's drinking water is supplied from a borehole close to the Broads village, however, environmental concerns over Catfield Fen have left the supplier in need of finding a new method.
This will come in the form of a new system of pipeline, which once complete will mean Anglian Water will no longer need to take groundwater from the fen, which is a site of special scientific interest.
However, the scheme will see disruption on the roads, with two way temporary traffic lights placed on the A149 for approximately seven months.
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Hannah Stanley-Jones, head of water resources at Anglian Water, said: "Our region faces some unique challenges. It is drier than any other part of the United Kingdom, receiving only two-thirds of the average rainfall, but is also one of the fastest growing and home to more than 100 important areas that are internationally recognised.
"Over the last year, we've seen less than average rainfall and depleted groundwater levels in the East - in some areas of Norfolk and Suffolk it has been the driest for 30 years."
She added that between 2020 and 2025, Anglian Water would reduce the amount of water it is legally allowed to take from the environment by 84 million litres a day-, and that this scheme was just the first of a number that will be carried out in the future.
"The new pipeline means we won't need to use groundwater abstraction Ludham," she added. "It will protect the environment in a much-loved, unique part of our region and keep taps running for thousands of homes nearby for years to come."
The project is the latest investment in the county from Anglian Water, which is close to completing a £34m improvement project at its treatment works in Norwich.