Accelerated gate one submissions

The Regulators Alliance for Progressing Infrastructure Development (RAPID) has today received submissions for four potential strategic regional water resource solutions.

The solutions received additional funding in Ofwat’s most recent price review (PR19), to help accelerate their development in response to the challenge of ensuring water resource supplies are resilient while protecting the environment and benefiting wider society. This funding is subject to a gated process to provide regular checks on progress in developing these solutions and to determine whether they should continue to receive additional support.

These solutions are intended to address Southern Water’s forecast deficit in their Western Area, which is set to occur in 2027 and the following submissions have been made in relation to the first gate:

Fawley desalination (proposed by Southern Water), which is included in Southern Water’s Water Resources Management Plan and could provide up to 75 million litres of water per day.​

River Itchen effluent reuse, (proposed by Southern Water), which is an alternative to Fawley desalination in Southern Water’s Water Resources Management Plan, and which could provide up to 61 million litres of water per day.

West Country North Sources (jointly proposed by Bristol Water, Wessex Water and Southern Water), which consists of a reservoir in Bristol Water’s area and transfer through Wessex Water’s area to Southern Water, and which has a transfer capacity of up to 40 million litres of water per day.

New proposal

In addition, Southern Water submitted a new proposal for a raw water transfer from Portsmouth Water’s proposed Havant Thicket reservoir to its Otterbourne Water Treatment Works. This solution could provide up to 61 million litres per day of additional water.

This is a new proposal, and therefore will be subject to additional assessment to determine whether it should be added to the existing programme and receive additional funding.

RAPID will be conducting the assessment of all four submissions according to its published guidance and will be providing its recommendations to Ofwat. Ofwat plans to publish its draft decision on 18 November 2020. This will be followed by a period of representation closing on 15 December 2020, details of which will be published alongside the draft decisions. Ofwat’s final decision will follow at the end of January 2021.