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Urban water issues

August 5, 2001 - Wellington

MEDIA RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE USE


Forest and Bird is calling on councils in urban areas to provide incentives for households to install rainwater tanks. This policy was supported at Forest and Bird’s recent Council Meeting.

“Most of the water used in the home is flushed down the toilet or used to water the garden. This is very wasteful,” said Eric Pyle, Forest and Bird’s Conservation Manager. “Rainwater collection systems would decrease water demand and reduce drawdown on reservoirs – Auckland may not have needed to build the Waikato pipeline if rainwater tanks had been part of water policy there.”

Huge sums of money are currently spent supplying drinking water which is then flushed down the toilet or used for watering the garden. “Rainwater collection systems could help lower costs for supplying water,” said Eric Pyle.

Household rainwater tanks could also help reduce stormwater flows. “In some urban areas stormwater is a major problem in terms of infrastructure needed for disposal and impacts on streams and estuaries. Rainwater tanks could help reduce stormwater peaks,” said Eric Pyle.

With infill housing development, the impermeable area is increasing as are stormwater flows. “Stormwater impacts are increasing with infill housing. Household rainwater tanks could help mitigate some of the stormwater effects of infill housing as well as reducing water use,” said Mr Pyle.

Ends

Eric Pyle
Conservation Manager
email: e.pyle@wn.forest-bird.org.nz
phone 04 385 7374 work; 025 227 8420;


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