Environmental investigations

We believe our investment should be based on sound science - by gathering data through our scientific investigations we can better understand how our business affects the environment before trialling solutions.

We have recently completed over 20 investigations as part of our AMP5 period from 2010 to 2015 - for an overview of this work see related items.

To find out more about the investigations including summaries of the findings, see the map below.

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Findings from these investigations were reported to the Environment Agency, Natural England and other stakeholders and were fed into our 2015-20 business plan.

Following agreement with Ofwat, the Environment Agency, Natural England and others, we have now started work on around 35 investigations over the AMP6 period (2015-20).

These investigations include:

  • detailed monitoring of chemicals at 30 sewage treatment works as part of a national programme
  • understanding the effects of our discharges on bathing and shellfish waters at Burnham, Weston-super-Mare, Clevedon and The Fleet (Weymouth)
  • monitoring for the presence of eels and identifying improvements to support populations at 10 sites
  • trialling different compensation flow and operating regimes at some reservoirs to mimic more natural river flows in downstream watercourses
  • a catchment permitting system in the Bristol Avon catchment that allows us to reduce phosphorus from sewage treatment works by optimising existing treatment systems and using new technologies and more sustainable solutions
  • establishing the impact from our operations upon several Sites of Special Scientific Interest such as the Somerset Levels and Moors, Blagdon Lake and the Moors River
  • improvements to our priority wildlife habitats around Clatworthy reservoir and management of non-native invasive species around our business
  • understanding the effect of our abstractions on the Water Framework Directive status of streams and rivers in the context of other environmental pressures.

For more information please email

Related download

AMP5 environmental investigation summary