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Water projects need shadow carbon pricing

ICE news

ENGINEERS AT last week's ICE climate change debate expressed concern about the lack of incentives to drive down carbon emissions from the water industry.

Water engineers have the dual challenge of cutting carbon emissions and having to cope with increased rainfall as climate change takes affect.

MWH senior principal engineer David Balmforth said the low carbon solution to increased rain is sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDs).

But as these are more expensive, water companies are unlikely to choose them.

Independent consultant Chris Binnie called for shadow carbon pricing to be included when projects are assessed and for it to be included in the Water Resources Plan 2008.

But Environment Agency head of environment policy Clive Bates said he did not believe this would change the solutions chosen by water rms.

Balmforth claimed that MWH already included shadow carbon pricing on its projects adding that this had inuenced the choice of drainage solutions.

Balmforth went in to argue that the problem was not just on the drainage side. Maintaining supplies would become more of a challenge as hotter summers increased drought risk, he said.

'Water is so cheap there isn't the incentive to reduce waste or demand, ' he said.

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