Urgent need for water conservation
The NFGWS is urging group water scheme members to use water wisely and to avoid all unnecessary use.
With a spokesperson for NFGWS adding, "The exceptionally high water demand currently being experienced has potential implications for human health."
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The spokesperson added, "With emerging evidence of sources being under stress in the GWS sector, there is a very real danger that the situation will deteriorate in the coming days as high temperatures and lack of rainfall will inevitably put pressure on lake reservoirs and on spring sources in particular.
"Apart from having less water available, the increase of at least 50/% in water demand currently being experienced in the sector is putting pressure on treatment systems also. These systems have a design capacity and where this is exceeded treatment systems (and especially filtration) cannot operate as effectively. This increases the risk of contaminants entering the drinking water supply.
"While universal metering on most schemes has meant that plants operate well within their design capacity under most circumstances, the current level of demand is putting plants under severe pressure. This problem of soaring demand is compounded by the fact that the algal blooms that arise on many of our lake sources are already putting pressure on filtration systems at this time of year.
"For spring supplies, as the aquifer is depleted, raw water quality deteriorates and this too puts pressure on treatment plants. Any unnecessary usage that speeds up the depletion of these groundwater sources should, therefore, be avoided.
"For the above reasons, the NFGWS is calling on GWS members to think carefully about how they are using water, to check for leaks on their properties and to refrain from any and all unnecessary use."