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UK experts debate global water security

Experts from across the country have come together to give evidence about the water security challenges faced by the global community.

The hearings are part of an inquiry being undertaken by the Engineering the Future alliance, at the request of the government’s chief scientific adviser and head of the Government Office for Science John Beddington.

The evidence gathered will form the basis of a report aimed at highlighting, to the government, industry and the public, the challenges we face globally in terms of water security and the approaches that could be adopted.

Representatives from the World Economic Forum, the Global Water Partnership and Engineers Against Poverty, as well as independent consultants, were among witnesses questioned by the steering group.

“Evidentiary hearings have enabled the steering group to gain a better understanding of the strategic issues surrounding global water security.”

Peter Guthrie

A range of water-related issues including drought, irrigation for agriculture, virtual water, regulation, flooding and asset management were covered.Chair of the steering group, University of Cambridge’s Peter Guthrie said the evidentiary hearings were proving to be an informative and insightful process.

“The hearings have enabled the steering group to gain a better understanding of the strategic issues surrounding global water security,” he said.

“By interviewing a range of witnesses from the engineering sector and the wider water community, we have been able, in a limited time, to bring a broad scope to the inquiry and ensure our report is well informed.”

The final report will be published in April by the ICE, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management.

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