National Trust in Wales wins water award

20th September 2012


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The National Trust in Wales has scooped two of this year's UK water efficiency awards after saving millions of litres in just 18 months

The conservation charity was presented with the 2012 water efficiency innovation award by Waterwise and the Environment Agency, in recognition of the way in which it has integrated water management into the daily operation of all its properties.

Under its “Fit for the future” programme, the trust has assessed water use in more than 240 properties and installed water saving measures, including flow restrictors, rainwater harvesting and a sustainability standard for its gardeners.

The initiative has seen the trust save more than four million litres of water and £5,000 in costs at Plas Newydd Country House on Anglesey, after investing just £450 in flow restrictors and urinal controllers. It has also saved more than 150,000 litres of water at Bodnant Garden by installing water conservation devices in toilet cisterns.

The trust’s approach also scooped it the award for exemplar project in Wales, beating the Environment Agency in Wales, Welsh Water and the Energy Saving Trust, just four months after winning one of the top prizes at this year’s Ashden awards for halving the energy consumption of its properties.

Meanwhile, potato supplier Greenvale was named winner of the business and industry award for its design of water recycling system, which the company funded to the tune of £1 million and allowed it to reduce its water consumption by 85% and cut energy costs by 50%.

“The recent drought has brought the need for water efficiency into sharp focus. We want to see all businesses reducing their water usage and using this to deliver environmental and financial benefits,” said Lord Smith, chair of the Environment Agency.

“What can be achieved is highlighted by this year’s winners – all of whom should be praised for not only saving water but also putting themselves a step ahead of their competitors, saving money and preparing for the future.”

Other winners of this year’s awards include Northern Ireland Water, for a rainwater harvesting project that provides one of its offices with 6,000 litres of water each week, and Lowaters Nursery in Southampton, which has saved £20,000 a year by sourcing the 17 million litres of water it needs from rainwater, rather than the mains supply.

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