Taking care of our water
The Aquifer Partnership has produced two brilliant illustrations showing the effect our actions can have on the quality of our precious water supply in the Lewes/Brighton area. Please share them far and wide!
Across Sussex, much of the water that supplies our homes and businesses is sourced from aquifers buried deep in the chalk block of our landscape, which soaks up water like a sponge.
But as with many of our natural resources, the quality of this water supply is under severe threat – both from population pressures and as a side-effect of modern farming and lifestyles.
The Aquifer Partnership was set up by a number of organisations* to take action to address this threat and ensure our groundwater remains a sustainable resource for the future. To help raise awareness of the impact of our actions on our water supply, it has produced these lovely illustrations.
We think it would be great if TTL supporters can share these illustrations with as many people, businesses and other organisations as possible to highlight what we can do to protect our precious water sources.
Pollution of our ground water can be due to:
- Road run-off – a third of pollution in our water is due to tyres and oil from our cars
- Agricultural – nitrate fertilisers seep into our aquifers
- Paint, chemicals and other toxic materials being poured down our drains or on the ground
To avoid polluting our water supply, we can:
- Ditch the car and walk or bike instead
- Use natural paints or reduce use of paint and other chemical treatments.
- Clean water-based paint off a brush with newspaper before washing it in the sink.
- Don’t pour solvents down the drain or on the ground – take them to the recycling centre.
*TAP is a partnership between South Down National Park, the Environment Agency, Southern Water and Brighton & Hove City Council.
I agree that all these actions are beneficial and necessary, but surely the ones missing are to use less water; to collect and use as much rain and grey water as possible instead of mains water, particularly on gardens; and to make whatever land surrounds our houses as water permeable as possible. All these actions will tend to reduce extraction from the acquifer, and minimise the effects of whatever pollution does reach it.
I accept that not everyone can do this, for technical and/or cost reasons. But those of us who can have a moral obligation to do so.
Also, I have no data on how significant such actions might be in the grand scheme of things – perhaps you do?