Cumulative Environmental Impacts

In partnership with Natural England, the WRSE has examined the potential cumulative (or in-combination) effects of the options being considered by the member companies for their PR19 Water Resource Management Plans (WRMPs).

This is the first time that a collaborative regional appraisal of the potential for cumulative environmental impacts has been undertaken on a regional scale, by water companies.

The WRSE commissioned the consultancy, Ricardo, to undertake this work. After having developed a robust methodology, Ricardo first looked at the WRMPs produced for the Periodic Review 2014, and determined that no significant issues had been overlooked.

Then Ricardo used the methodology to scrutinise the feasible options under consideration by the WRSE member companies for their draft WRMPs for PR19.  This approach was performed first when the companies were drafting their WRMPs (‘Phase 3’), and again after the consultation period, when companies were revising these plans based on comments received during the consultation process (‘Phase 4′).

Both assessments found some options which had the potential to cause cumulative effects on particular receptors and catchments. The findings included the potential inter-relationships between schemes and the impact pathway. This information was used by each member water company to produce the Environmental Report and Strategic Environment Assessment required for the Water Resources Management Plan.

You can read the report of the the conclusion of the Phase 3 work undertaken to inform the WRSE company members’ draft WRMPs here.