Hosepipe Ban – a Permanent Feature for UK Summers?

Those who live in the South East of England are surely familiar with the term: hosepipe ban. These summer-long bans are more and more common due to the lack of rainfall in recent years, which led to a record number of droughts and half-full reservoirs.

Also, population density is very high in this region and some parts of England are so dry, that even Sydney’s annual rainfall is double than that of London. According to some statistics, these bans could save up to 900 litres of water per hour.

When hosepipe bans are in place, residents mustn’t wash their cars, windows, water plants, and
they shouldn’t fill paddling pools or ponds, nor cleaning paths and patios – using the hosepipe.
Exemptions are offered for the disabled, and water companies may have slightly differing rules
from each other. Fines can reach up to £1000 if caught breaking the regulations.

But do hosepipe bans really help?
While surely many people think twice before opening taps when a hosepipe ban is ordered and may feel threatened by the potential fine, it’s down to the neighbours to notify the authorities – as water companies don’t have the money or resources for this.
Also, using buckets for either home car washes or filling pools is not forbidden, which may
mean that great amount of water is still used but it’s less likely to be wasted by leaving the hosepipe on.

Water saving is an important issue for the future of the UK, especially in the South East. This is one reason why water companies are rolling out water meter systems in this area. Paying for the exact amount of water used could not only lower current bills but can also help in conserving water, so there may not be a need for hosepipe bans in the future.

Written for the Energy Saving Warehouse

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