University of Sheffield leads in water research
There is a long history of water research at the University of Sheffield, working with regulators, water companies and the public with contribution to the consortium Twenty65. At our recent Future Cities Forum held on 6th March 2017 at IET, London,
Professor Joby Boxall who leads this research talked about the water challenges that we may face in the future: 'There is no one silver bullet to our water challenges...at Sheffield University we try to come up with collaborative solutions...but it is well worth looking at Scotland where so much focus has been put on water industry innovation - the Scots are simply shooting ahead!'
Professor Boxall went on to describe how in the UK we are using very old water infrastructure - about 70 years plus - and we are not investing enough. We only pay typically about £1 daily for one ton of water to be delivered into our homes. He continued: 'It is interesting to hear so much about increasing density in housing from the previous panels, but this is a potential nightmare for service and utility providers. We are doing this without properly integrated planning'.
Warning for the future, Professor Boxall stated that we are not investing in our water systems like our Victorian forbears and we need to look at how we store energy using water - where there is huge potential. In addition, he insisted that there needs to be a serious educational programme too to explain the benefits of saving drinking water and using 'grey' water instead.