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Reducing Water Wastage in the UK Annual Report (2009)

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Over the past year there has been a lot of progress towards a water efficient society. The water companies are now undertaking water efficiency projects of a much larger scale than in the past, and developing new partnerships, with Waterwise and others.

Waterwise Stakeholder Survey

To deliver its objectives, Waterwise works and communicates directly with key stakeholders to drive water efficiency. To support this, and to aid development and planning of a new Waterwise post 2010, Waterwise this year conducted a stakeholder survey. The results are tabled below but in summary:

Waterwise achieved an average rating of 4 out of 5 (where 5 is strongly positive) when stakeholders were asked ‘to what extent do you believe that Waterwise has technical expertise, promotes water efficient products, has a consistent voice on water efficiency, communicates water efficient messages,

has wide-scale political influence, conducts good quality research, has raised the profile of water efficiency and appears to act independently?’

When asked to describe Waterwise, a large proportion (70%) of respondents used words like, ‘cooperative’, ‘accessible’, ‘high expertise’, ‘proactive’ and ‘esteemed’.

Waterwise performed less well in its capacity
to deal with the large volume of work. This has been largely due to the small staff team with which Waterwise operates. It is being addressed.

The draft determinations of the water company price review have allowed a record number of large-scale water efficiency programmes. This represented significant progress in taking forward water efficiency in the industry. Reviews (such as the Walker and Cave reviews), legislation, policies, strategies and select committee reports have taken forward the water efficiency agenda, and paved the way for new opportunities.

Waterwise has been working closely with the water companies to deliver ‘Shower power’ – an educational campaign designed to encourage shorter showering. This campaign been designed to help water companies meet Ofwat’s water efficiency targets.

We have seen an increase in the number of Waterwise Marque products. We have seen the roll out of a Waterwise/Energy Saving Trust programme providing joint water and energy advice funded by EU Life Plus.

Waterwise has played a role in all of these developments – highlighting our important function as a facilitator and enabler. Waterwise has also continued to shape the agenda on water efficiency through a great deal of work on the links between water and energy, particularly in relation to joint retrofitting opportunities and some very detailed work around the Evidence Base for Large-scale Water Efficiency. A lot of staff time has been dedicated to working with and influencing product manufacturers and retailers to promote water efficient goods.

Finally, Waterwise has benefitted from partnership working and delivering at the local level through projects such as ‘SHARE – Social Housing Action on Resources and Environment’, ‘Rivers on the Edge’ and ‘RENEW – Regional Environmental Networks for Energy and Water’.