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Water

In 2001, the South West consumed an estimated 2,975,939 megalitres (Ml) of water, of which 12% was consumed from public supplies and 88% was sourced from private supplies.

Table 15 provides a breakdown of public water consumption by sector, in 2001. Overall, companies supplied a total 440,216 Ml of water, but only 351,224 Ml was delivered to the consumer so an estimated 20% of water supplied is lost through leakage.

Table 15
Water consumed in the South West from public supplies, by sector, in 2001 (megalitres)
 
Sector Total water supplied Amount lost through leakage Total water delivered
Total water consumed 440,216 88,991 351,224
of which…  
Household 262,503 52,735 209,768
Non-household 177,713 36,256 141,456
of which…  
Agriculture ** ** 40,380
Industry ** ** 33,260
Local authority ** ** 17,365
Commercial & retail ** ** 15,939
Leisure & tourism ** ** 24,834
Defense ** ** 9,679
** Data not available
Sources: Barton, 2004; Berry, 2004; Bristol Water, 2002; DWI, 2002; Green, 2004; Jones, 2004; Marsh, 2004; OFWAT, 2001; Pennon Group, 2002; South West Water, 2004; Turner, 2004; Water UK, 2003; Wessex Water, 2004, 2004a & 2004b and Wickens, 2004.

Table 16 highlights private water abstraction from surface and ground sources, by sector. Electricity production was the most significant user of private water, 61% of total private water abstracted. The fish farming industry was also a significant user, abstracting 37% of the total. As water for fish farming is usually abstracted from nearby surface water and piped through tanks or ponds and then discharged back into rivers or seawaters, the net abstraction is very low or zero (Scottish Executive, 2002).

Table 16
Private water abstraction in the South West, by sector, in 2001
 
  Megalitres per day Megalitres per year
Total private water 7,191 2,624,715
Household supply 31 11,315
of which…  
Surface 23 8,395
Ground 8 2,920
Industry 73 26,645
of which…  
Surface 48 17,520
Ground 25 9,125
Spray irrigation 4 1,460
of which…  
Surface 2 730
Ground 2 730
Agriculture 45 16,425
of which…  
Surface 6 2,190
Ground 39 14,235
Fish farming 2,637 962,505
of which…  
Surface 2,509 915,785
Ground 128 46,720
Electricity 4,362 1,592,130
of which…  
Surface 4,360 1,591,400
Ground 2 730
Other * 39 14,235
of which…  
Surface 5 1,825
Ground 34 12,410
* Other includes unaccounted and illegal water abstractions.
Source: Water UK, 2003