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CONTENTS INTRODUCTION Welcome to the Summer 2017 edition of the Institute of Water Magazine. As a newly appointed Director it is a real honour and a great pleasure to be offered the opportunity to introduce such a well supported and hotly anticipated publication. I use the word ‘magazine’ carefully as we have recently launched the new Institute of Water Journal, a separate peer reviewed technical document which landed on doormats at the end of April. It really is a great piece of work, sincere congratulations to all who made it possible and if you have not seen it yet, do have a look - the very readable and informative style covering relevant industry developments makes it a real pleasure to learn about what can often be seen as turgid and complex technical matters. As well as being topical at present, learning, professional development and innovation are at the heart of what the Institute of Water represents to its members and with PR19 almost upon us I felt this was an opportune moment to reflect on how I believe our Institute will maintain and enhance its relevance within the water sector in spite of the digital revolution that according to some may have major lasting impacts on employment and skills. Did you see the recent edition of The One Show on BBC1 where a robot called De Niro competed against a Masterchef in cooking a lobster bisque soup? In case you did not see it, the people who tasted the soup afterwards could not detect the difference between the two implying that the robot was as capable as a highly skilled chef. Martin Ford, author of the award winning book ‘The Rise of the Robots’ was invited to speak at a recent international water conference in Spain and articulated his view that computer power is developing so quickly that robots will soon undermine wages and employment. And the Global Employment Institute is suggesting that in future businesses will need to have ‘quotas for humans’.

Whilst it is perhaps easy to see how robots could be used to undertake relatively simple and repetitive tasks, robots in the main have to learn what they do from humans through techniques such as machine learning and artificial intelligence. In addition, robots do not lead, they lack capability to work in teams without humans and they certainly cannot innovate. So these same skills which IoW aims to support, facilitate and foster through professional development will become even more relevant in the future. Most importantly robots will never reflect for a moment the passion and commitment that IoW’s members exemplify within our industry. So the challenge for our members is to embrace the enhancements digital technology will bring and find ways to harness these enhancements in the way we deliver service to our customers. This may sound straightforward but we all know the reality is something else!! Our annual conference takes place between 14th and 16th June in Manchester. In my experience the conference is one of the highlights of the water industry calendar with very high calibre speakers, a superb gala dinner and networking opportunities galore. Details are available on our website. I hope to see you there and enjoy the magazine!!





Features 16 BIM 34 Customer Service 46 Water Industry Standards 68 Flooding / SuDS 76 Pollution

Regulars 4 Members Update 8 Environment News 10 New Registrants 82 Area News

Bob Taylor Operations Director, Drinking Water Services – South West Water

Institute of Water HQ: 4 Carlton Court, Team Valley, Gateshead, Tyne & Wear NE11 0AZ Website: President: Peter Simpson Chairperson: Natalie Akroyd Chief Executive: Lynn Cooper Marketing & Communications Manager: Lee Hansom Tel: 0191 422 0088 Fax: 0191 422 0087 Email: Advertising: Martin Jameson Tel: 07342 850 289 Email: Designed and produced by: JimJam Media Ltd Email:

The Institute of Water is the only professional body solely concerned with the UK water industry. We can support and develop your career whoever you are and whatever you do. We do this by providing a unique learning, developing and networking framework. For details on how to join visit today.


INTRODUCING LEE HANSOM - OUR NEW MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER Lee brings 10 years’ experience in Marketing & Communications, including 1 ½ years as Senior Communications Officer for the Public Health team at Gateshead Council. Indeed it was the public health aspect of the Institute of Water that attracted Lee to the role. Lee has a BA (Hons) in Media and his key skills include copywriting, social media channel management, web content management, events & conferencing as well as the obvious marketing and communications. Communication – internal and external – is key to raising awareness of the Institute of Water and it was Lee’s strong background in communications that put him ahead of the other candidates.

Lee said: “I’m delighted to joining Lynne Cooper and the rest of the team at the Institute of Water. I’m looking forward to getting round to meeting the area representatives and other members of the Institute of Water over the coming months.” “My initial impression of the Institute of Water, is that it’s great to see so much passion being demonstrated by people working across the industry, who want to be the best they can at what they do.”

Lee replaces Dan who received an offer to work in a marketing position with a pharmaceutical company opening new offices in Newcastle. Dan had been with us for 4 ½ years and would probably soon have been seeking a new challenge but it was a shock to lose him and we wish him well.

CHANGES ON MEMBERSHIP & STANDARDS COMMITTEE The Membership and Standards Committee, empowered to make decisions on all matters relating to membership, recently welcomed two new members: Professor Tom Curtis - Professor of Environmental Engineering, University of Newcastle – replaces Nigel Horan (now retired from university life) as our academic. Tom joined the university in 1994 after doing an MEng and a PhD in Public Health Engineering at Leeds University. Tom has always been interested in the interaction between water, waste, the environment and health and he works on the science and technologies required for the treatment of water and wastes. Tom spoke at our Annual Conference in Bristol in 2014 and more recently at our inaugural Science Conference at the Royal Society. It was here we identified Tom as a possible replacement for Nigel and we were honoured and thrilled when he accepted our invitation.


Pete Barratt, recently retired from Anglian Water, fills a Science vacancy on the committee. Pete spent over 40 years with Anglian Water, ultimately as Senior Water Quality Specialist, and was one of the first to attain Chartered Scientist status through the Institute of Water. Pete is a Science Assessor for CSci, RSci and RSciTech and sits on the Registration Authority at the Science Council. Pete has also helped the Science Council on Employer CPD Champion visits and Licence Reviews so there isn’t much he doesn’t know about Science Registration! We have asked Pete to write an article for the next issue of the Magazine – reflecting on the past 40 years and sharing his thoughts on future challenges to scientists and instrumentation in the water industry.




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Most products have been designed in-house to ensure that they meet, or exceed, the customer’s requirements. In addition, the in-house design team also undertake bespoke design and development work for pipe manufactures and end-users. PESL have recently launched their new website Online buying facilities have been integrated, to help with the ‘out of hours’ enquiries. The company believes in supplying quality products and has been an ISO 9001 registered company since April 1997.

They are organisations that finance, construct, manage, operate and regulate built and natural infrastructure, including many in the water sector. Our team helps investors, boards and executives assess political and regulatory risks and manage their exposures. We complement the experience of our own experienced team with input from our network of senior specialist associates. Central parts of our approach are forging relationships and asking questions. We bring these together in the Indepen Forum. This is a high-level discussion group that we established in 1996 following concerns expressed by CEO clients that public policy was not informed by investment and industry considerations. Each month, we convene senior influential individuals from all parts of the infrastructure sectors to explore important issues in a trusted environment. In water, the PR19 is under way and so are downstream and upstream reforms. The sector needs joined up thinking and policies that factor in the complex economic, environmental and social considerations. We are working with clients to address these issues including the impact of Ofwat’s resilience duty, its cost assessment approach and the risk/ reward package for PR19. Find out more:

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Vice President Environment and MD of Water Policy International

We held the second in our series of technical conferences (the first was Science last September) in Birmingham in March. Professor Ian Barker, our Vice President Environment and MD of Water Policy International, chaired the day, and had gathered (with a bit of help!) a diverse range of senior figures from across the water and environment sectors. We held the second in our series of technical conferences (the first was Science last September) in Birmingham in March. Professor Ian Barker, our Vice President Environment and MD of Water Policy International, chaired the day, and had gathered (with a bit of help!) a diverse range of senior figures from across the water and environment sectors. Almost 150 delegates had a unique opportunity to hear different perspectives on the two themes for the day: ‘Regulating for the Environment’ and ‘Delivering for the Environment’, all based around the concept of collaboration. The water industry has two main aims: serving the interests of customers and protecting and improving the environment, and these linked objectives were the common thread running through all the presentations and discussions. Sarah Hendry, Director of Floods and Water at Defra, set out the government’s expectations for the water industry in her keynote opening speech which set the tone for the day. Apart from the two core priorities of protecting vulnerable customers and ensuring long-term resilience she also spoke about the need to make markets work. These three themes are at the heart of the government’s Strategic Policy Statement to Ofwat, which is well worth reading if you want to understand the regulatory and operational priorities for the industry. Sarah also spoke about the need for a skilled industry to address the challenges, which was a neat segue into the presentation from Emma Wilcox. Emma is Chief Executive of the Society for the Environment (SocEnv) and talked about the three elements of SocEnv’s ethos: environmental decisions should be made by those


competent to do so; environmental professionals work in every profession; and working in silos will not help us deal with environmental challenges. She also spoke about the importance of professional registration, either as a Chartered Environmentalist or Registered Environmental Technician, in order to demonstrate your competence and professionalism. The remainder of the morning session was dedicated to the regulatory viewpoint. Terry A’Hearn, Chief Executive of SEPA, dispelled the myth that regulators are dull and boring by rising to the challenge set by Ian: ‘How can we make regulators redundant?’ The intention was for regulators to describe what it would take for them to step back and adopt a lighter touch, provided that the companies they regulate meet and exceed the basic regulatory contract. Terry used colourful examples, including some drawn from his experience in his native Australia, to talk about the need for a one planet approach where companies who earn the trust of regulators can improve the performance and profitability of their business. Those who fall short can expect the full force of the law to be applied. David Black, Senior Director Water 2020 at Ofwat, then went on to explain how Ofwat is moving from a ‘regulator says’ to a ‘regulator wants’ approach, with an expectation that companies will show more ambition than ever to focus on outcomes, customer service, affordable bills, innovation and resilience. In particular, that they expect companies to listen to and understand their customers and to respond to their needs and requirements. Next, we were due to hear from Harvey Bradshaw, Director of Environment and Business at the

Environment Agency (EA) but an urgent meeting with the Secretary of State meant that Paul Hickey, Deputy Director Water Resources at the EA, had to step in literally at the last minute. Paul was attending the conference in any case as an IWater member and as a colleague (with Mandhy Senewiratne, Lu Gilfoyle, Rachael Picken and Lucy Archer) on the organising committee. Paul talked about the EA’s ‘common endeavour’ with the water companies and other regulators, and how partnership working can help a company go beyond the regulatory contract. He used the examples of the Bristol Avon and combined sewer overflows (CSO’s) and bathing beaches, to describe how best practice and skilled professionals working together can deliver more for the environment. David Elliott, Group Strategy Director at Wessex Water, then bravely provided a water company response to the regulators by picking up their ball and running with it. He explained how, with a different mind-set and behaviours by everyone engaged in water management, innovative solutions which go beyond current regulatory thinking can deliver more cost-effective solutions. David used the example of Poole Harbour where Wessex has been using nitrogen trading with farmers as an alternative to conventional asset construction. The catchment solution has stripped 40 tonnes of N for less than the operational expenditure of a treatment plant. David’s call for sustainable water services and green infrastructure – working with natural catchment systems – led neatly into the subtly provocative Q&A chaired by Ann Bishop, Managing Director of Indepen Ltd.

ENVIRONMENTNEWS Lunchtime provided an opportunity to network and to visit the stands of the conference sponsors Arup and Technolog. Our President (and Chief Executive of Anglian Water) - Peter Simpson - then opened the afternoon with a keynote address on collaboration as the only way to sustainable growth. Peter put the case for national collaboration to achieve security of water supplies. He explained that there needs to be both a national and intergenerational aspect to decisions but that there is also a local aspect as well, as shown by the Water Resources East work which looks at other water users as well as public supply. We heard a European and international perspective from Peter Gammeltoft, the former Head of the European Commission Water Unit, who described different examples of collaboration, as well as the need for the right kind of regulation and governance. Then it was closer to home with Alastair Maltby, Operations Director of the Rivers Trust. In a very few years the Catchment Based Approach has gone from a standing start to become the accepted basis for catchment improvements, with a wide range of stakeholders engaged and providing data and resources. An integrated approach to deliver multiple integrated outcomes – for flood risk management, water quality, water resources, biodiversity – has opened up all sorts of opportunities and alliances.

Two young professionals – Matthew Coe from MWH Global and Dean Blackbourne from Northumbrian Water – gave fascinating and succinct presentations about their work to secure development consent whilst protecting important bird populations and reducing sewer pollution risk respectively. Jim Panton, CEO of Panton McCleod and Scottish Area President, also had a brief slot to talk about Scotland’s work on the Circular Economy. The next session was designed and led by Mandhy Senewiratne, founder of Fyrefly Global Sustainability, who found four amazing volunteers to role play a tricky development proposal in an environmentally sensitive location. The intention was to try and agree a collaborative solution; the verdict of the audience was that they failed, miserably… It’s not just water companies that have to work hard to protect the environment. Simon Reed, Chief Operating Officer at the Coal Authority (CA), gave a joint presentation with Paul Hickey from the EA about collaborating to reduce the impact of polluting discharges from ancient metal mines. These pollute over 1500km of river and no longer have an owner to take responsibility. The EA and CA have an ambitious and world-class programme to improve 1200km of river, and provide multiple other benefits. A different sort of collaboration is happening in Scotland where Scottish Water is working in partnership with a wide range of other

organisations to improve the performance of the sewerage network. Mark Williams, their Head of Environmental Science and Regulation, described how in recent years conventional engineered solutions have been delivered in parallel with sustainable catchment schemes to improve the performance of 78 failing works causing river and bathing water pollution risks. The final presentation of the day was from the Director of Allocation and Asset Management at the Environment Agency, Ken Allison. Ken talked about using collaborative and innovative approaches to reduce flood risk. These include the use of natural flood management in catchments as well as more formal partnerships with water companies and others. If you’ve read this far you’ll have guessed that it was a very full programme and a great illustration of how the environment is at the heart of everything that we do. But to deliver for the environment, as well as customers, means working together and using innovative approaches to deliver more for less. We’d like to thank all of our speakers, who were brilliant, and gave their time so generously to share so much food for thought. Big thanks also to our sponsors, Arup and Technolog. The next conference in this series is Engineering (November, Bristol): look out for news of that very soon!

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SCIENCENEWS DEVELOPING A FRAMEWORK FOR CHARTERED STATUS Thames Water’s Scientific Services group, which includes the company’s Water Quality teams, Catchment, Sampling and Laboratory Services, has embarked on a journey with the Institute of Water to develop a framework for professional recognition of individuals via the Science Council professional registers RSciTech, RSci and CSci. David Reynolds, Head of Scientific Services, leading the initiative declared,: “Professional recognition for the scientific community in Thames Water is extremely important to me: I want to put in place a framework for my team to be able to demonstrate their continuing professional development and receive recognition for this, when they hit milestones in their career at Thames. Engaging individuals in developing their careers through the scientific registers feels the right approach for my team.” Currently a team across Scientific Services group is starting the ball rolling, looking to gain chartered status through the Institute of Water. The team in the future will act as mentors to the wider community, helping individuals on their journeys through the registers. The aim is over the following 18 months to move from a pilot stage through to a full blown implementation across the wider Scientific Services Team.

Janet Bowman, Laboratory Quality Manager, said, “There are some brilliant scientists in our team and the registered (RSci) and chartered (CSci) scientist awards recognise our skills and knowledge that we use every day. RSci and CSci recognise our skills as professional scientists, not just our academic qualifications, but also our soft skills; how we apply our knowledge to different situations and communicate this to support the wider business.” Ashley Jonas, Laboratory Manager, added “The Institute of Water collaboration provides another avenue for laboratory staff to gain external recognition for their competency. The Institute of Water will complement our work with other institutes, providing an alternative professional register route for individuals in the team more focused on water industry specific skills and knowledge. I am really looking forward to working towards my Chartered Scientist status as part of our initial mentor programme to help de-mystify the process for my wider team.”

NEW CHAIR FOR SCIENCE COUNCIL WILL LEAD THE DRIVE FOR REGISTRATION David said: “I am looking forward to helping the Science Council grow and to welcome scientists and technicians old and new into registration. The future success of the UK as a nation is highly dependent on our expertise in all the disciplines of science: never has this mattered as much as it does now as we face the opportunities, and the challenges, of forging our nation’s post-Brexit future.

Professor David CroisdaleAppleby OBE, FAcSS, Winner of The Sunday Times Non-Executive Director of the Year Award (2016), has been appointed Chair of the Science Council.


“In my view, professional registration of scientists and science technicians underpins public trust in the men and women who make things happen but are rarely seen doing so: Science Council registration and Chartership indicate a scientist or science technician who is seriously committed to their own continuing professional development and conduct. These are the scientists that employers will increasingly look to have as part of their teams. “I accepted this role because it is a role of national importance and one to which I felt I could make a significant contribution and I look forward to joining Sir Keith Burnett (President) in creating an organisation which

is fit for the future and where Science Council registration becomes the automatic step in securing a continuing role for professionals entering the world of science and science technology. “I am keen to bring my experience and expertise to the Science Council, as the organisation enters its next phase of growth and development. In particular, I am happy to be supporting the excellent Gatsby Charitable Foundation campaign – Technicians Make it Happen - which has been a valuable tool for employers to showcase their skilled technician workforce. It has also helped open discussion about the opportunities available for their current and potential technicians such as professional registration, through which technicians can demonstrate that regardless of their career path they can be trusted to fulfil a vital job requiring specialist skills. So, anyone – whether an employer, recruiter, customer or colleague – who meets with a registered technician will know they are dealing with an accomplished professional.”




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ENVIRONMENT Having always had a hands on interest in the environment since a child, I was very impressed that Anglian water encouraged voluntary work when they brought out their “Give me 5” scheme (later known as “Love to Help”). This encouragement and use of matching a certain number of voluntary hours with paid voluntary hours was further boosted when the Biodiversity team were looking for local team “Biodiversity Champions.” This role, which I gladly took up, helps highlight and raises awareness of the possible impact that our industry can have on the environment but also highlights some of the fantastic wildlife that share our sites, which can require protecting and mitigating for.

Adrian Hinchliffe

Supply Manager; Anglian Water Registered Environmental Technician

I randomly chose to further develop myself with external educational courses but I was then informed about a colleague who had been recognized as a “Registered Environmental Technician” through the Institute of Water. It quickly became apparent that this was the next logical step to progress both my career and passion in a much more structured way. Having joined the IOW for two years now and now maintain a CPD this has enabled me to highlight what I have achieved to date. It has also highlighted some key areas of where to improve and where to aim, to achieve further goals in the future. I am really pleased to have been awarded the “REnvTech” qualification but it doesn’t stop there. With dedication, the help of my mentors, a change in job role, I am now aiming to progress to Chartered Environmentalist in the near future.

I’d been thinking about applying for Chartered status for years. The Institute of Water made the journey sound quite straight forward, so last year I finally plucked up the courage to fill in the application form. Writing my statement about how I demonstrated the various competencies was actually very enjoyable – it gave me a chance to reflect on my quite varied career and all the different projects I have been involved in over the last decade.

Carmen Snowdon

Principal Consultant; WRc Plc Chartered Environmentalist

I was expecting some tricky questions at the interview as much of the work I do leading the leakage area of WRc’s asset management team could, arguably, be considered more engineering-focussed than environment driven. However, as water is fundamentally a natural resource, our conversation centred on the links between managing supply and demand and environmental outcomes. The interview also gave me a chance to talk about some of the work that I am really passionate about around customer service and behaviour change. The whole experience wasn’t anywhere near as daunting as I thought it might be. I am very proud of achieving my Chartered status and would encourage anybody who has been thinking about applying to bite the bullet and go for it.

I have been with the water industry for over 25 years. Firstly with Anglian Water where I enjoyed a variety of scientific, regulatory, asset management roles…and now with the Environment Agency where I have held national portfolios on water quality, agriculture, groundwater and contaminated land management. I am currently the national lead on water resources. Throughout this time I have found my work in the sector an enriching part of my life; what we do is important for society, business and the environment. Looking forwards even more so as we seek to increase resilience to changing pressures.

Paul Hickey

Deputy Director, Water Resources; Environment Agency Chartered Environmentalist


Our ability to meet these challenges requires confident, capable water professionals across a wide range of disciplines. I was delighted when I gained Fellowship status of the IoW last year and then worked towards Chartered Environmentalist this year. Again I am so pleased that I can now say I am part of this community. A big part of my job is to make sure we are building the next generation of talent and doing this in a collaborative way across the sector. This was a strong theme of the recent IoW Environment Conference. Having such professional qualifications yourself, particularly if you are in leadership positions, gives legitimacy to this endeavour and encourages others to invest in their own personal development.”

NEWREGISTRANTS SCIENCE At the beginning of last year I was encouraged by my manager apply for professional registration. I have worked as a laboratory Technician for Anglian Water for around four years now, starting as an apprentice, and felt I had built up enough knowledge, skill and experience to apply. I was extremely pleased when the Registered Science Technician Certificate came through the post. The rewarding feeling when your efforts have been recognised is brilliant and having been awarded professional status is extremely motivating and has fuelled my enthusiasm to continue learning and building more experience.

Gary Thorpe

The certificate, has given me more confidence, demonstrates my commitment and shows that I keep the highest standards of quality in my work. I would encourage anyone who is thinking about applying for professional status to get the application filled out and sent off, because it will present new opportunities and better career prospects.

Technician; Anglian Water Registered Science Technician

I applied for chartered scientist status as I believe it is a valuable certificate that recognises my scientific achievements and competencies. Within Northumbrian Water we are encouraged to pursue chartered status through The Institute of Water as it is tailored to our industry. It is a great achievement to add to my CV and will benefit me in my future career development. The application process was really straight forward and I was able to use examples of work I had recently completed. It is great to be able to look back on previous work and see how far I have developed in the past 10 years. We often do not reflect on previous accomplishments however the CSci application requires you to look for examples of your competence; although slightly daunting this really does give you a sense of achievement.

Laura Wilkinson

Technical Advisor; Northumbrian Water Chartered Scientist

I graduated back in 1994 and have worked within the water industry for a number of years. I decided to apply for Chartered Scientist in order to gain recognition of my career progression and professional achievements in addition to my academic achievements. I chose to apply for Chartered status via the IOW, as the IOW felt like the ‘best fit’ for my professional experience as well as being a well-respected institution. The process of apply for Chartership allowed me to fully evaluate and asses my professional development to date and to understand my future career developmental needs. Gaining my Chartership has not only validated my professional experience but also enhanced my career prospects and helped me recognise my future professional development. It is something I wish I had completed many years ago.

Samantha Powell

Process Design Engineer; Dwr Cymru Chartered Scientist


NEWREGISTRANTS ENGINEERING Becoming a member of the Institute of Water has been a great experience for me. Anyone in the industry, from any level of experience, will have the same opportunity to develop and enhance their knowledge and improve their professional aspirations. I currently work for Anglian Water as a Network Technician, having been recruited via the apprenticeship scheme over 5 years ago, it was also the business that suggested that I should become a member of the Institute of Water. Since becoming a member I have had access to a lot of information as well as support from the Institute, which led me to attaining my Engineering Technician status (EngTech). It was challenging, but I have managed it. Currently I am working towards becoming an Incorporated Engineer (IEng).

Alex Akintomide

Network Technician; Anglian Water Engineering Technician

I like having to complete a CPD as it challenges me to plan a progression route for my career and to continually broaden my knowledge. To anyone thinking about joining the Institute of Water, just do it and you will become part of something progressive and innovative.

After attending an open day with the Institute of Water, I decided to apply for EngTech registration as it was clear that this would be a great opportunity for me to receive professional recognition within the water industry as a Mechanical Asset Technician. EngTech registration would also increase my opportunities for further professional development as I pursue a career in Anglian Water, as well as encouraging me to continue my own development so that I could perhaps achieve Incorporated Engineer status in the future.

Darren Newstead

Asset Technician; Anglian Water Engineering Technician

After I left School I completed a four year apprenticeship in mechanical engineering which included a HNC qualification. I was also able to continue studying and eventually received a degree in engineering technology. Having joined Anglian Water four years ago I have continued to learn and develop my skills across a range of different engineering applications. I feel that acquiring EngTech status has acknowledged all the skills and experience I have gained so far, and supports my other qualifications which are more theory based, by demonstrating my practical abilities as well. I am proud to have been awarded with EngTech status and would encourage anyone else who is thinking about applying to do so.

Leaving the education system can feel a little like being dropped into space, you have no idea of the direction in which you’ll float. You might see something you’d like to aim for, but sometimes paddling furiously to get to it sends you in the opposite direction. The Chartership process can be like a jet pack, once you set the direction and put fuel in, the jet pack will get you moving. After a master’s degree and 8 years’ experience in the workplace I opened the Engineering Council’s UK SPEC and looked at the 17 criteria I’d need to find excellent examples for - my initial feeling was sheer apprehension. However I soon saw this as an opportunity to evaluate where I was in this ‘real life’. I put aside a few hours each week to work through it and after a couple of months I had a report I’d surprised myself with.

Lisa McKenzie

Strategy Manager; Veolia Chartered Engineer


For this alone, I’d recommend starting your report, even if you’re not sure you’re quite ready to apply. It’s a great way of objectively figuring out where you are and what areas you could do with more experience in – you can take it to your boss and use it as a development framework. Achieving the CEng mark after my name has given me confidence in my experience and I’ve recently joined the Institute of Water committee, hoping to help others do the same.


SYSTEM EFFICIENCY Lee Crabtree Water Technical Advisor; Energetics Incorporated Engineer

I have worked within the water and utility industry for over 20 years. I have gained experience in managing design & build projects for contractors to water authorities and private companies. Looking back on my career within the water industry, this has been extremely enjoyable and rewarding and would recommend to everybody a career within the water industry. Obtaining my IEng status with the Institute of Water was quite a straightforward process and I was able to demonstrate my knowledge and experience in a structured manner. Hopefully I can now give something back to others working within the water industry by offering support and encouragement. I would like to thank Energetics for supporting me and offering advice throughout my IEng process.

Jason Barratt

Network Technician; Anglian Water Engineering Technician

I applied for the Eng Tech registration after been put forward by my management team. At first I was a bit daunted by the idea of applying as I thought that my back ground working on the tools in the water industry wouldn’t be what was needed.

Stuart Foster

UK Water Manager Drives, ABB Limited There is a new consideration for water utilities when determining their next move towards using less energy. It is tucked away within something called electrical system efficiency. An electrical system is needed to power pumps and typically comprises a transformer, variable speed drives (VSDs), electric motors, switchgear and cabling. Quite often when specifying such a system, designers simply multiply the catalogue efficiencies for each component to get an overall system efficiency. For example, if each component is listed as 98% efficient, there may be an assumption that the entire system will also be 98% efficient. However, in reality the actual overall system efficiency could be as low as 86 percent? So what went wrong? The problem is twofold. Firstly, catalogue efficiencies are based on manufacturers giving their best efficiency figures under laboratory conditions and based on the testing standards laid down by the appropriate authorities. For example, motor direct-on-line (DOL) efficiencies are reported on a pure sine wave. No factory or public power supply is a pure sine wave, so actual DOL efficiencies are likely to be up to two percent lower than those published. Furthermore, EN50598-2 is a relatively new standard for VSD efficiency. It defines that manufacturers should publish their figures based on their default factory setting. Manufacturers use different default settings. For example, ABB uses 4 kHz as a default switching frequency. However, other manufactures chose to use 2 kHz. This lower switching frequency improves the figures the manufacturer can publish for the VSD efficiency. However, in practice, the system efficiency is worse. Secondly, simply connecting components together overlooks some fundamental lessons of physics which causes the components to react with each other in ways you may not expect. The net system efficiency depends on many factors. Adding a VSD can impact on system efficiency, as can adding a PQF or passive filter or a low harmonic drive. Likewise removing components from a VSD may improve the efficiency of the drive but has a negative impact on the transformer, supply and motor. Every scenario described takes valuable percentage points off the efficiency, or transfers losses from one part of the system to another. Hence the 86 percent quoted earlier.

I was at the time working as a Network technician and this I thought would hold more relevance to the register, but once I attended the seminar I realised that anyone can have the skills and experience required to complete the registration.

Armed with this insight, utilities planning greenfield sites can now call in ABB and avoid any future energy use disappointment. But what about existing electrical systems? The good news is that certain components can be fine-tuned, replaced or adjusted to improve the overall efficiency. It’s just a case of knowing where to look.

The ENGTECH registration is a recognised qualification which I feel will give me enhanced professional status within the water and engineering sector. I have now changed roles to a Design Engineer and look forward to completing my CPD and working toward the IENG registration. I would recommend the ENGTECH to anyone working within the water industry as without you realising you have the skills required.

If you would like to find out where to look, ABB is offering a CPD-certified training course which will teach you the finer details of system efficiency. To find out more, email or call 07000 DRIVES (that’s 07000 374837).


ANNOUNCING SPEAKERS AT INSTITUTE OF WATER ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2017 This year’s conference theme, ‘Together we achieve more’, will focus on collaboration and will include speakers from across the water sector - including water companies, regulators and contractor/suppliers – and others outside the sector. Through talks, exhibits, interactive sessions and a social programme, the event provides a platform to learn about and discuss a wide range of live topics for our sector.

Speaking about the event, Conference Chair and Skanska Executive Vice President, Thomas Faulkner, said: “The delivery of high quality water and wastewater services meets a fundamental need for society, so there can be no greater motivation than to constantly strive to be better. There is growing recognition across the sector that effective collaboration can help us deliver world class, affordable levels of service. That is what inspired the focus of this year’s conference. I would love for you join me in celebrating the great work that we should all be proud of in our sector and help debate how we can be even better. Then we will prove that together we achieve more!”

The event opens with an opportunity to meet some of our sector leaders in an informal, roundtable setting in the ‘Meet the Leaders’ session. This is followed by the President’s Dinner and Awards in the magnificent setting of Manchester Cathedral. Opening the conference on day one will be keynote speaker Andrew McMillan, former Head of Customer Service at John Lewis. Andrew will offer his view on what collaboration is, the power it has and why it is so important to industry. Following this will be sessions on ‘The Regulatory Perspective’, ‘The Water Industry Perspective’ and ‘The Supply Chain Perspective’, featuring speakers such as Marcus Rink, Chief Inspector, Drinking Water Inspectorate, Sara Venning, Chief Executive, Northern Ireland Water and Neil McKenzie, Director, Laganwater among others. The first session of day two, ‘How do customers benefit from collaboration?’, will open with Institute of Water Conference regular, Cathryn Ross, Ofwat. Following this, the ‘External views of collaboration’ session will present opportunities to hear about collaboration from different industry perspectives, featuring Geoffrey Fowler from London Design & Engineering UTC, David Hawkins from the Institute for Collaborative Working and Edward Moore from Resolex.

The conference will conclude with a lively afternoon featuring interactive role play sessions exploring some of the pitfalls resulting from poor collaboration and equally the outcomes achievable when we work effectively together.

“We always receive fantastic feedback from delegates describing our annual conference as an unparalleled opportunity to learn more and make connections and I’m particularly excited about the line-up of speakers we have this year.”

Institute of Water Chief Executive, Lynn Cooper said: “The theme of this year’s conference captures our aim of ‘connecting people’. By working together to a common purpose delivering safe water and sanitation - we can provide a better, more efficient service to the public.

The Institute of Water Annual Conference 2017 takes places on 15 and 16 May at Chetham’s School of Music, Manchester. To book and to see the full programme, please visit

A N N UA L C O N F E R E N C E 15 | 16 JUNE 2017





Monitoring & Managing your Wastewater Network +44 (0)1629 823611



BIM THE DIGITAL TWIN The UK water industry is currently grappling with how and why they should exploit Building Information Modelling (BIM) or as they like to call it Better Information Management. Through the industry group BIM4Water and the water owner/operator working group in particular the UK water and sewerage companies are collaborating to establish a common understanding and approach. Garry Nodwell

What is a Digital Twin exactly? It is an information model that represents a physical asset. This could be an individual asset like a pump or a group of assets like a treatment works.

Where did it all start? Back in 2011 the UK government published its construction strategy which amongst other things set out its stall to mandate the use of BIM. Following a successful campaign and implementation programme, including the production of new standards, BIM was mandated on all UK government projects in April 2016. The UK government programme of work is so large it created a “do or die” moment within the supply chain. This resulted in a shift in the way the supply chain deliver projects which is proving to be beneficial. As the water industry shares a lot of the same supply chain it is slowly realising there is an opportunity to exploit the same benefit.

It could also be a network which includes both water mains, sewers and assets like pumping stations. The digital twin is underpinned by a number of technologies 3D CAD, GIS, content and data management systems. It will have an interface or portal that connects the information and allows an individual to understand past and present performance and make predictions about the future. It is almost like having your own time machine.

Chief Technologist (BIM) United Utilities


It’s not that water professionals don’t understand the importance of data and information, they do, but usually it is focused at a particular point in the asset lifecycle making it disconnected and often wasteful. The aim of BIM is to remove this waste by adopting collaborative processes and technologies. It’s a difficult subject to get your head around because it is so wide and touches all parts of the asset lifecycle. One of the simplest way’s to understand BIM is to think of it as the “digital version of the physical asset” or the “Digital Twin”. The Digital Twin was born out of the USA’s space programme were they had little or no scope to get things wrong because they were designing something that ultimately lived so far away. Their answer was to develop a digital twin so they could performance test, simulate and analyse before they built anything and put it into service. After all it is better to make mistakes in the digital world rather than the physical.



It is important that when we say twin we mean “identical” twin. Accuracy and completeness are paramount to maximising the value. This is something the water industry will need to get to grips with. It relies on a certain amount of nerve to resist starting the physical construction until the digital twin is complete. It means taking a bit more time designing the digital twin and then replicating it accurately in the physical world. Once you have the digital twin it can be used for optimising the in-service asset. There is no value in delivering something different than you promised, non-identical twins are not an option.

KSB and BIM Building Information Modeling BIM Level 2 is here and KSB UK are making great strides to provide all our customers with everything they need for BIM in the UK Market. Not only do we already provide 3D BIM Objects in a variety of file formats but we also aim to provide the Information side of BIM Level 2, such as COBie and Product Data Sheets in the near future. We aim to provide all the BIM files our customers need all in one place; one simple download. For more information visit Loughborough - 01509 231872 - Bridgwater - 01278 458686 - Incorporating




Asset Management Advisor Mott MacDonald


Engage users/operators/maintainers in planning and design


Procurement to ensure data handover and maintenance


Linking asset information and O&M records to cost


Bringing assets into joined up BIM model

There are a number of recommendations presented, including:

Disciplines in Tandem Building Information Management (BIM) and Asset Management (AM) are two disciplines that have grown in importance and popularity over the last decade. Traditionally they have been treated separately, with BIM emerging from the building construction industry and AM from the strategic management of infrastructure and utilities. Specifications and standards have been published in both disciplines, increasing awareness and providing clearer definition of their scope. As the disciplines have developed, practitioners of both have identified that BIM and AM have potential to support one another. Understanding of this interaction is still developing, and significant benefits will be realised by organizations who are able to strengthen and optimize the relationship between AM and BIM.

Bringing AM and BIM Together


Develop policies that address BIM and AM jointly


Communicate to all staff the importance of integrating BIM and AM


Develop enterprise-wide information systems and processes capable of combining BIM and AM compliance


Develop appropriate client requirements for BIM and AM and communicate these to the supply chain.


Take a phased approach to extending BIM for existing assets prioritised by criticality

BIM4Water has produced an Owner Operator Guidance Document4, currently in draft format, in which guidance is provided on how the water sector views BIM. This defines BIM for the water industry to mean ‘Better Information Management’. The document is principally focussed on BIM and its application and benefits within the water industry. However, it sets out how BIM sits within Asset Management, following the approach of ISO 19650-2 (which will incorporate PAS 1192 parts 2 and 3), see Figure 1. Benefits of using BIM through both the delivery and operational phases of the asset lifecycle are listed in the document, which all derive from having well managed information. Figure 1 - UKBIM Alliance –The Generic Project and Asset Management Information Lifecycle5

Various documents have been written that discuss the relationship between AM and BIM, how they can be brought together, and what the benefits will be. The Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE), the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors (ICES) and the Institute of Asset Management (IAM) published a position paper ‘Leveraging the Relationship between BIM and Asset Management’1 and a factsheet2 explaining the scope and purpose of a forthcoming guide ‘Enhancing Asset Management Through BIM’. The contents of the guide have been expanded on at a recent ICE conference3. In these documents, the authors warn of the dangers of treating BIM and AM as separate disciplines, and present advantages in bringing AM and BIM together. The key message is ‘BIM enhances AM by improving asset information management’. Benefits identified include:



The right data and the right quality for managing assets through their lifecycle


Quickly model scenarios


BIM is excellent for interacting with non-technical stakeholders


Asset Management - An Anatomy6


BIM can be used as a risk management tool


Subject Specific Guidance - Asset Information7

The IAM has published two documents which cover Asset Information:

FEATURE: BIM These both highlight the importance of asset information and good information management to Asset Management, but do not cover how BIM can be applied for this purpose. Finally, in the paper ‘Future-proofing governance and BIM for owner operators’ in the UK ICE’s Infrastructure Asset Management Journal8, the authors discuss AM in BIM in the context of Future Proofing. While focusing primarily on Future Proofing, it describes how with BIM it can support good life-cycle management of assets. The paper states that Future Proofing and BIM are not generally well defined in the AM context. However, together they can ensure AM strategies are responsive to future changes in requirements, where BIM ensures that the right information will be available to asset manager, enabling them to react to changes in circumstances which were anticipated at an earlier stage in the asset lifecycle.

Conclusions Direction from Asset Management is essential if the information generated and managed using BIM is to have maximum benefit to an organization. BIM supports Asset Management by providing robust information management processes throughout and asset’s life-cycle. The two disciplines are not only complementary, but are essential for one another to be fully effective. We see that as well as the potential for ‘enhancing Asset Management through BIM’, we also ‘enhance BIM through Asset Management’.

Recommendations ■■

BIM needs Asset Managers not designers, to define information requirements, and this will give operational feedback into design on such issues as risk, criticality and reliability, so we no longer get poor designs with repeated weaknesses.


Similarly, Asset Managers need information to be well managed, which can be done using BIM.


Strategically aligning these two disciplines will maximise the value of both, benefitting the orginzation, its stakeholders, and ultimately its customers.

The Value of Information There is clear agreement then that BIM manages the information that is vital to Asset Management. However, BIM does not by itself say what information should be managed and how it should be used. Instead it points back to Asset Management for how this information is defined9. Asset Management identifies the information needed to make decisions, plan and undertake activities, which in turn are aligned with organizational objectives. These ultimately derive from an organization’s customers, stakeholders and context, whose values cascade down through AM into BIM, as illustrated in Figure 2. By following this alignment through, the information, managed using BIM processes, is therefore the information which will provide value back to customers and stakeholders. Figure 2 – Asset Management to BIM Value Cascade

Value and alignment are two of the fundamentals of Asset Management. ■■

Value: “Assets exist to provide value to the organization and its stakeholders”


Alignment: “Asset management translates the organizational objectives into technical and financial decisions, plans and activities”10.

Together, these fundamentals ensure that value runs throughout an organization’s activities. These values drive the information requirements, and so provide context to the information which is managed by BIM. This vertical alignment throughout an organization maximises the value that information, and therefore BIM can deliver.

References 1 SHETTY, HAYES, POCOCK and WATTS, 2013. Position Paper - Leveraging the Relationship between BIM and Asset Management. [Online]. ICE, ICES and IAM. [Viewed 28/04/2017]. Available from: pdf 2 ICE ASSET MANAGEMENT GROUP, 2015. Fact sheet - BIM and Asset Management ([Online]. ICE, ICES and IAM. [Viewed 28/04/2017]. Available from: 3 JENSEN and POCOCK, 2016. Enhancing Asset Management through BIM - A forthcoming guide by ICE and IAM, ICE Transport Asset Management 2016, 28/10/2016. [Online]. [Viewed 28/04/2017]. Available from: www. pdf 4 BIM4WATER, 2017. BIM4Water Owner Operator Guidance Document. Draft v4.2. [Online]. [Viewed 28/04/2017]. Available from: www.britishwater. 5 INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR STANDARDIZATION, 2017, ISO/ DIS 19650-2, Organization of information about construction works -Information management using building information modelling -- Part 2: Delivery phase of assets. Figure 2. [Online]. [Viewed 28/04/2017]. Available from: 6 THE INSTITUTE OF ASSET MANAGEMENT, 2015. Asset Management – An Anatomy, Version 3, [Online]. Available from: 7 SCHWARZENBAC et al., 2015. Subject Specific Guidance Publication (Nos 22 23 & 25) - Asset Information, Version 1, Bristol: The Institute of Asset Management 8 KRYSTALLIS, VERNIKOS, EL-JOUZI and BURCHILL, 2016. Future-proofing governance and BIM for owner operators in the UK, Infrastructure Asset Management, 2016, 3(1), 12–20. 9 BRITISH STANDARDS INSTITUTE, 2014. PAS 1192-3:2014 Incorporating Corrigendum No. 1: Specification for information management for the operational phase of assets using building information modelling. London: British Standards Institute, Clause 4.4. 10 BRITISH STANDARDS INSTITUTE, 2014, BS ISO 55000:2014, Asset management – Overview, principles and terminology. London: British Standards Institute. Clause 2.4.2.

BIM manages information. Asset Management aligns information with value. By improving understanding between the two disciplines, organizations can properly understand and access the value of their information.



BIM - OPPORTUNITY OR THREAT? The onset of BIM into the water industry is quickly gathering pace, but as this wave comes over the horizon, should we be preparing for a shock, or lining up our boards to take advantage? John Homer, Chief Executive of North Midland Construction PLC (NM Group) gives us the lowdown. Over the last decade or so, we have seen BIM integrated into several parts of the construction industry, not least buildings and highways. As a multi-sector engineering and construction, we are well aware of the benefits and challenges that BIM will bring to the water sector. The recently launched BIM4Water Guidance for the Water Industry Owner Operator is a very positive move towards the water sector gaining the best advantage from BIM.

NMC BIM Vision “With BIM Level 2 now reaching maturity and stability we are able to fully commit to the deep and wide implementation of a futureproof BIM policy.

Our BIM approach wholly encompasses the stringent requirements laid down by the BSi Verification programme and it is my intention to show policy driven efficiencies at a project and company level. I see the BIM acronym as Better Information Management and it is with this ethos of knowledge transfer that we approach every project. Looking ahead, we take seriously the cultural responsibility as a major tier one contractor and will use BIM to bring those same efficiences and knowledge to our supply chain, project peers and clients for the good of all concerned.

My Advice – Experience is key NM Group has employed Gary Ross, who has experience of implementing BIM into projects and companies, ranging from supply chain to major clients both in the UK and internationally. With his core skills being in construction engineering, he is well placed to help NM Group and customers on the combined BIM adventure. Let’s find out more from Gary.

What are the main benefits of BIM? BIM can benefit everyone, but it does depend on your broader role, aims and willingness to implement. There is no reward without effort in BIM, and those that have clear BIM goals, a pragmatic approach, a willingness to get involved and a desire to pursue good quality are the ones who benefit most. With all that in place, the results are tangible, and the key project benefits such as time, cost, and risk reduction become available. However the main benefits come from not BIM alone, but from a broad ranging long term approach to asset management, and these benefits are naturally reserved for the owner operators.

What are the risks?

Gary Ross

Head of BIM, NM Group


Bearing in mind the available benefits, the main risk of BIM is not being involved in it. BIM is a tool like any other, you need to be using the most efficient ones. Second risk is being future proof. Sustainability is as much about providing a continuous service into the future as it is about carbon reduction. We are experiencing a world-wide data revolution, and I truly believe that if we miss this opportunity to get on board, UK industry will fall way behind our foreign competitors.

Thirdly I have seen many owner/operators, contractors and suppliers fail because they simply set-off on the wrong foot. Months or years later they are still suffering from bad or non-existent decisions and strategy. The old adage “fail to plan and plan to fail” has never been so true.

Where is best to start? The BIM4Water guidance document is a great place to start, with years of learning, derived from British standards, good practice and experience. The tendency is to dive into the detail without seeing and therefore setting the bigger picture from the beginning. The acronyms, data drops, documents and models are there to provide a better service that can be better managed. Too many people see BIM as project related, or role dependant which it simply isn’t. BIM is an organisation wide culture that affects projects, people and business outcomes. If that organisation works alone, then that company may benefit in a small way. If an organisation works with its supply chain, customers, advisors, legal teams, and so on to develop the culture of BIM across all reaches, then the benefits can be huge.

FEATURE: BIM My answer therefore is to start at the beginning with a clear strategy.

Is the timing of BIM right for the water sector? This can be a double edged question. From one point of view there is never a good time to implement significant change. On the other hand, the benefits of change are tangible and if you don’t change then your competitors will leave you behind. The timing will never be convenient. However time is running out before the world simply moves on around us.

What should a strategy look like? The various standards that have been created for BIM point to a strategy such as the above for an owner operator organisation. Starting with the organisation’s vision, mission and goals means that the strategy will embrace those same values that drive the organisational culture. From those goals a programme should be created that sets out medium and long term asset replacement goals, as well as new or refurbishment works. It is key at this point to align these with financial, commercial and management goals that will normally have been set elsewhere.

From this strategy, a plan can be formed which includes inputs and directives from organisational stakeholders, statutory requirements and legal requirements etc. This then all leads to an information strategy, which details the information that is required to meet the needs of the asset management plan, stakeholder reporting, and the company goals and culture. This information strategy should clearly set out the questions which need to be reported on, and the format and delivery of the answers to best suit the people and systems in place. At this point the organisation should start to benefit from having a structure around its own information and systems. Next step is to produce an Organisational Information Requirements (OIR) document that lets the outside world know what your organisation expects with regards to the information created, gathered or used on behalf of it.

The OIR specifies what should be included in the Employer’s Information Requirements (EIR) which is a project specific set of requirements to suit the timing and nature of that project and the engagement with its actors. Gary has the task of engaging with our current and potential customers as well as our supply chain to make sure that NM Group play our part in sharing BIM knowledge.

If you would like to discuss your BIM strategy in confidence and on a no-strings attached basis, please feel free to contact Gary at

As an owner/operator, this OIR is your first step into BIM. Without it nothing in BIM will entirely meet your needs and may well present you with an information headache.




BIM: WHY WE NEED TO FOCUS ON THE OPERATIONAL PHASE NOW How is the relationship between asset management and BIM developing? Robert Lakey, technical manager for engineering consultancy Sweco, explores. As we get ready for the next phase of BIM development, new organisations and committees are being mandated with BIM development. ‘Digitally Built Britain’ gives us a roadmap, whilst initiatives such as smart cites and disruptive technologies are making us look at challenges with a new and wider perspective. As a result, we need to engage with different sectors within our industry and outside such as asset management and technology, making them part of the team - not a distant cousin. As a result of siloed development to date we have a vast array of systems, ontologies and languages to contend with; COBie, LandXML, IFC and Uniclass to name but a few. None work for every asset. For example, to complete IFCs so they worked across the entire lifecycle in all sectors would be a herculean task. To date there is only 3D solid and centreline for the entirety of the infrastructure asset set.

Robert Lakey

Technical Manager, SWECO

We as an industry are making real progress with BIM implementation in the capital delivery phase of assets. I have seen a marked shift in presentations at conferences from the purely theoretical to real, practical project learning presentations. However we are seeing all of this progress in the capital delivery phase - I have seen very little from an operational phase of the lifecycle. The ICE and IAM have recognised the importance of alignment between BIM and asset management, issuing a joint paper relating to the need to treat asset management and BIM jointly, but we need to put this into action. All of the projected savings that we talk about in relation to BIM are only realised in the whole lifecycle of an asset and we are largely ignoring the biggest part (both in terms of cost and of time) of that lifecycle. We can’t ignore the operational phase and expect to make the profound step changes we are striving for as laid out in the Government’s ‘Construction 2025’.

Where do we need to be?

If we scour the abundance of articles on BIM, we can only find discussion around better handover, not how BIM works in the operational phase – nor indeed any acknowledgement that the amount of data increases after handover throughout the asset lifecycle.


In the operational world, data sets get even more complicated with large volumes of telemetry data and real time data. Most businesses with large asset bases to manage have already invested large sums of money in their operational systems with their own languages. These realistically need to be catered for with minimal change. PAS1192-2:2014 shows a strategic methodology for this, but even this is inadequate in the face of real-time data demands and the vast data sets produced by telemetry and the Internet of Things. While it shows the connection between the operational data such as telemetry and ERP, there is no information around possible process for this.

What do we need to do?

To enable whole lifecycle BIM to be deployed in line with AM practices so we can test and learn lessons as we have done in the CAPEX phase of projects, I believe, we need to undertake a series of steps. These include: ■■

To involve Asset Management and others in the existing BIM organisational structures and include their professionals on joint BIM committees


To engage with a new set of business sectors and technology vendors who traditionally haven’t intersected with ours


To extend BS1192:2007 A2 2016 to allow for operational data and a more detailed breakdown of asset naming


To extend and update PAS 1192-3:2014 to include operational data, transfers of telemetry/IoT type data. Real time data also needs to be considered


To facilitate more cross sector/industry training, for example more asset management training in engineering

We have made great strides in BIM implementation and we should rightly pat ourselves on the back, but equally we should not rest on our laurels. We should be pushing forward with implementing the next phase, involving the asset management community and embracing the whole lifecycle in this next push forward.



As trusted advisors, Sweco’s asset management team enables clients to realise value from their assets and to achieve their organisational objectives. Our services range across the entire asset lifecycle from the boardroom to the operator and align to the IAM scope of asset management.

For more information please visit:




EXPLORING THE BENEFITS OF BIM FOR THE WATER INDUSTRY While the principle element of Building Information Modelling (BIM) is associated with the built environment, and more specifically deemed the role of specifiers and architects, the benefits for the water industry are also great. Jamie Mills, Systems Engineer at Xylem and member of the BIM4Water Steering Group explores the relevance of BIM for the water industry and the lessons that can be learned from other sectors. Building a new commercial office space may seem far removed from the building of a new water industry asset, but there are similarities. The water industry has embraced BIM into its day to day operations, but there are some key differences in terms of understanding the methodology. Although the strict definition of BIM relates to building information modelling, we like to see it more as better information management; enabling more efficient design processes, construction and operation. The principle methods of BIM have worked well in architecture, construction and building services for many years, so it is only logical that this now extends to other aspects of the built environment. In fact, following the UK Government’s mandate for BIM Level 2 on centrally procured construction projects, the method has gained considerable recognition amongst other industries. Globally, there will be ever growing interest in the methods of BIM with the forthcoming release of ISO19650 which will describe the organisation of construction work using building information modelling. A typical water asset such as a pumping station is in fact an incredibly complex system that requires the skillset of a number of cross-industry specialists. Of course, pumping stations are intrinsically different to a building, not least from the perspective that pump sumps are below ground and buildings traditionally above it and inhabited. While the principles of BIM remain the same, it presents a number of potential questions and/or issues, all of which are being debated through BIM4Water – a dedicated group of individuals from across the water industry, who have come together to devise a mutually agreeable strategy to help facilitate BIM within the sector.


Outlining the delivery process The construction and delivery of a water asset using BIM level 2 requires clear definition of the owner operator requirements. A project brief and Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) provide specific technical details about information drops, data environment structure, timescales and methods of data transfer. These describe the architecture of the Asset Information Model (AIM). Once the project is complete, the information from the Project Information Model is handed over to the client in order to update the AIM. Using these structured methods removes any ambiguity from the delivery process and provides formal constraints for the design team to work within – helping to reduce any errors at handover. Parties work within project containers which contribute towards a Common Data Environment (CDE). This consists of a graphical information model and a non-graphical asset database. The key benefit of container based working, is the ability for teams to work together and within specific volumes. For example, civil, mechanical and electrical engineers are able to collaborate, avoiding the collision of services within installations. The non-graphical asset database captures all documentation including constituent product technical details and a naming convention provides a reference for these within the CDE. These technical details are captured within Product Data Sheets which are supplied by manufacturers. For example, pumps are referenced in a particular manner which indicates their type, location and what specific project they are installed on. Conventional information about performance and maintenance is also given. The main benefit here is the ability for specification teams to contrast and compare products and systems with other similar solutions. For example, it would enable the itemisation of spare parts within a whole life cost analysis resulting in a more accurate prediction.

Benefits The combined process of designing in a graphical model alongside a geographical information system and non-graphical asset database supports augmented reality, and the ability to build off-site, both of which improve safer practices of work in construction and facility management. One example of this is the construction of packaged pump stations and wastewater treatment plants whereby manufacture, assembly and testing is completed away from site and the asset is set into a location using a single crane visit. This dramatically reduces the construction team’s time on site and their exposure to risk. The methods also allow physical modelling of hydraulic structures and pumping stations to become more efficient. The 3-dimensional design will allow direct import into computational fluid dynamic analysis, without lengthy redraws from traditional 2-dimensional files. Further technologies are also becoming available such as additive manufacture for rapid prototyping, or 3-dimensional printing - this enables design teams to physically review the models before sign-off into construction.

Going forward

In the beginning, many may have been reluctant to embrace change within the design, construction and installation of water industry assets using the methods set out by BIM. However, as the benefits become clear, our industry is responding, which in turn is driving efficiencies across the supply chain. This is ultimately the goal of BIM, and we must now ensure its legacy, which will mean the continued sharing of knowledge and product data, resulting in better customer service. For more information on Xylem please contact 0115 940 0111 or visit

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25/04/2017 14:32



Enterprise Enterprise Decision DecisionAnalytics Analytics




BEFORE showing valves and actuators in below floor chambers

AFTER showing the actuators on extension spindles above the mesh floor

Invicta Valves Limited, Site Solutions has successfully completed a Rapid Gravity Filter (RGF) valve replacement scheme at a large Water Treatment Works for clients, Affinity Water. The scheme was competitively bid and had an approximate value of £230k. Work on the scheme began in August 2016 and was completed in October 2016. The Invicta Site Solutions Team carried out the works utilising the extensive product range of the world leading valve manufacturer and parent Company, AVK Group. The scheme specification involved replace, supply and fit all valves, penstocks and actuators on 8 RGF’s which in total included: 32 No. Butterfly Valves (4 per filter) 8 No. actuated Penstocks 8 No. manual Gate Valves Invicta Site Solutions National Sales Manager, Alex Philo explained the team’s approach, “This was a challenging scheme and we were able to draw on our extensive expertise and skill sets as well as utilise the product and resource capability that being a member of the AVK Group brings.


All products, M&E, steelwork, and supplementary services were provided ‘in-house” - This is what I believe makes the Site Solutions offering unique, we can supply a full turnkey solution, from supply, design, fitting, and maintenance. We also offer a refurbishment offering within our workshops.”

“This solution will benefit Affinity Water for many years to come, not only will works be easier in the future because we have negated the need for Confined Space working, but also all of the products supplied by the AVK Group are maintenance free - we believe this is a robust and resilient solution.” Alex Continued.

The project also involved work on the valve’s actuators which were situated below floor level, in chambers, making access difficult and cumbersome. Previous commissioning and maintenance works had to be conducted under Confined Space processes and conditions – not at all ideal.

The scheme also required refurbishment work including the replacement of existing pipework, flow metres, penstocks, actuators, gearboxes, extension spindles and pedestals as well as all associated electrical works.

After comprehensive consultation with Affinity Water, the solution identified and recommended by the Invicta Design Team, was to bring the actuators above floor level, making the works easier and safer to access and perform. Invicta installed open mesh floors above all of the valve chambers and repositioned the actuators at waist height through the mesh floors, using extension spindles.

Stuart Smith, Affinity Water Production Engineer and Project Manager for the scheme, said, “There has been a positive and collaborative approach between us and the Invicta Site Solutions teams on the scheme. The combination of innovative thinking and a resilient solution meant that we could move forward confidently.” For further details on this scheme, please contact: Alex Philo, National Manager Invicta Site Solutions Mobile: 07876 860319 E-Mail:



Our Site Solutions offer delivers a bespoke valve and penstock service that can provide you with a comprehensive ‘one-stop shop’ approach to your projects. We provide an extensive solution based package designed to solve the challenges that the UK Water Utilities and delivery partners face on a daily basis. From feasibility and life-time maintenance and from inception to completion, we can provide you with a service that offers best practice, cost efficiency and longevity no matter where you are in the UK.

VALVE, PENSTOCK AND ACTUATOR: • Supply / Installation / Refurbishment / Replacement • Site Surveys • Health Checks • Bespoke Fabrication SERVICES OFFER: • Scheduled Maintenance Servicing Contracts • Extended Warranties • Post Contract Training • UK Coverage ASSOCIATED ANCILLARIES: • Enabling Works • Electrical Installation • Civil Engineering Services • Equipment Commissioning • Design / Manufacture of Ancillary Equipment

Invicta Valves Ltd Units 9 - 12 Boxmend, Bircholt Road, Parkwood Ind Est Maidstone, Kent, ME15 9YG T: +44 (0) 1622 754613 E:

Invicta Site Solutions T: +44 (0) 1622 754613 E:

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DWR CYMRU WELSH WATER - FLOWMETER VERIFICATION FRAMEWORK Z-Tech are delighted to win the Dwr Cymru Welsh Water Flowmeter Framework, a 3 year framework verifying over 100 meters across Wales. Jamie Chamberlain, Water Networks Business Unit Manager said: “Yet another great framework win for the verification teams, adding to the verification customer lists of: Scottish Water, Thames Water, Anglian Water, Cambridge Water, Sutton and East Surrey, Southern Water and Kelda Water. I envy the teams that get to deliver this contract, they will get to see some spectacular scenery!”

CONGRATULATIONS TO Z-TECH’S JAMES PIKE WHO RECENTLY WON TWO APPRENTICESHIP AWARDS James, one of Z-Tech’s recently qualified Electrical Apprentices, showed exceptional work ethic amongst his peers to be awarded ‘Electrical Apprentice of the Year’, and ‘Work Based Apprentice of the Year’ from Hartford Regional College Awards Night – the only apprentice on the night to be awarded a Double Award! James said: “I was as surprised as anyone to get the double. I’m really glad all the hard work paid off in the end, with particular thanks to the support from Z-Tech and my tutor Fred, we worked hard to the end. Now I’m qualified, I’m looking forward to working with Z-Tech and helping our customers with Electrical install work.”

APPRENTICE TRAINING - WHAT ‘GREAT’ REALLY LOOKS LIKE! Uniper’s Engineering Academy had a fantastic turnout for the cross-industry apprenticeship delivery event, sponsored by Z-Tech. More than 45 people from various industries and three different water regions came together to see how the power industry delivers apprenticeship training at the Uniper Engineering Academy, Ratcliffe-on-Soar. The event highlighted the recent introduction of the new apprenticeship levy, explained in detail by Louise Barlow of the Education & Skills funding Agency (ESFA). This was followed by a tour of the Academy’s training facilities which include electrical, control & instrumentation and mechanical workshops, a live 11kV high voltage training network and power station simulators for operators to practice on. Jon Marks, Z-Tech’s Labour Business Unit Manager said: “Z-Tech have a number of apprentices at Uniper’s Engineering Academy as we believe that the facilities are some of the very best in the country. We helped to organise this event as my area of the business supplies Z-Tech technicians for water and power companies to supplement their staffing levels and there is a national shortage of instrumentation and control technicians. “We need to support our ‘home grown’ talent and have done this in a number of ways, from becoming a Technical Partner for the Peterborough UTC, through to helping to train lecturers on current technologies.”


BABOONS ARE REALLY CHASING US! Many congratulations to our very own Marcio Bonifacio, on completing an epic 450km ride of South Africa for TransAid. Marcio completed the ride over 5 days, raising more than £3.5k for the charity which helps implement local transport solutions, giving economic opportunity for developing countries. The overall fundraising for this challenge between 40 riders was £207K. We joked that ‘Lions are chasing us..’ would be the last thing Marcio would want to hear during his trip, but it turns out that Baboons and an ostrich did actually chase him – almost as scary? Marcio said: “This was another epic adventure, I really like to challenge myself at least once a year, so will be doing something similar in 2018 – watch this space!”

Problem Solvers Helpline: 01223 653500





A Stonbury Milestone - The first new build reservoir As the Reservoir Refurbishment Framework Contractor for South Staffordshire Water, Stonbury acquired the opportunity to tender for the design and build of a 10Mg potable water storage point at

daily basis and all with the same common goal at the heart of the team. This will enable, I have no doubt, the successful delivery of South Staffordshire’s ultimate business needs of supplying continued

SSW’s Outwoods site, on the outskirts of Burton on Trent.

wholesome drinking water to their clients – the public.”

The site had earlier planning permission in 2014 for a new build

Due to the residential nature of the site location, South Staffordshire

reservoir on the footprint of Reservoir No 1, which had passed its lifespan, however, the demolition and construction project of this tank was postponed due to other operational priorities within the South Staffordshire network. The option of the construction of an alternative Reservoir was considered and chosen to ensure the

Water have undertaken letter drops and meetings with local businesses and schools to keep them informed. The Stonbury project delivery team also set up a Community Portal system, which allows members of the public to follow the scheme and to communicate directly with the delivery team, asking any questions

continued supply of potable water to the local area.

they may have.

The tender process involved a high level of optioneering of all

The Outwoods Project on Community Portal can be found at

possible solutions, including temporary tanks, steel tanks, GRP tanks and the preferred, a hybrid solution for a reinforced concrete structure, which included pre-cast concrete columns and roof structure. This was offered as the most cost effective solution regarding whole life costs and design life, delivered to a very challenging programme. Stonbury were delighted to be awarded the contract and have subsequently completed the detailed design stage which developed the outline design, submitted at tender stage. After a very quick mobilisation on site, Stonbury have made a very impressive start to the scheme with the excavation and preparation for the floor slab completed in a matter of weeks. Stonbury Delivery Director, responsible for South Staffordshire Water , Jonathan Perryman, comments “to meet such a challenging for those that are interested in following this exciting and challenging project. Key Facts - 10MG Storage Requirement - Return to Service date of cell is early July 2017 and including all site works and overall programme of 28 weeks - Over 350 tonnes of reinforcement in construction - Over 2000 tonnes of concrete in construction - Over 15000 tonnes of spoil removal in construction, 100% of which will remain on site and reinstated over the new reservoir once completed and set to grass

return to service date of the beginning of July 2017, it was critical to build on the already strong relationship held between Stonbury and South Staffordshire Water. It is wonderful to see the Outwoods delivery team growing from strength to strength on what seems a


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USING SIM TO DRIVE BETTER CUSTOMER SERVICE Making sure a new Service Incentive Mechanism (SIM) continues to drive better customer service is already a pressing priority for the Consumer Council for Water (CCWater), according to the water watchdog’s performance analyst Colin Lench. In the coming months preparations for developing the new SIM will begin to ramp up and anticipation is already growing across the industry on how it is likely to evolve. Seven years on from its launch by the economic regulator Ofwat, there is plenty of evidence to suggest SIM has helped to achieve many of its objectives. Since 2010, written complaints and unwanted contacts have halved’ to: Since 2010, written complaints and unwanted contacts have reduced significantly. The qualitative SIM score for the whole industry rose from 4.34 (out of 5) in 2011/12 to 4.49 in 2013/14, before the survey was modified. These are encouraging signs.

But while SIM has marked a significant improvement on its predecessor – the Overall Performance Assessment – there is still much more to be done to close the gap between the industry’s best and worst performers on customer service. There have also been significant changes in customer behaviour since the SIM was launched. The explosion in popularity of social media has transformed the way many customers interact with water companies who are now expected to respond within hours, not days. A future measure must take into account this move towards ‘real time’ communication so it incorporates a wider range of customer experiences.

In addition to the new SIM, CCWater is also pressing for a separate measure to be introduced that captures the views of the whole customer base. It would encourage even greater customer focus by water companies. What is clear is that the SIM has laid strong foundations for companies to deliver even better services and strive for a future where the water sector leads the way in high standards of customer service and consumer satisfaction. This will be at the forefront of our mind as we work with the industry and Ofwat to develop the new measures. In the next edition I will share some of our thoughts on how we think a new SIM can achieve these ambitions.

GIVE YOUR TEAM PERMISSION TO DELIVER GREAT SERVICE Customer service in water utilities is a particular challenge, because many interactions are triggered when things go wrong, says Charlotte Prom, Head of Customer Experience for Lanes Utilities. On top of that, resolution can be complex and require investigation before a solution can be developed, implemented and service (and normal life) is restored. Other industries are further along in their journey to manage and deliver their desired customer experience, but Prom says Lanes Utilities, a division of Lanes Group plc, is working hard to close the gap fast. She adds: “Our aim is to teach and develop behaviours that enable employees to deliver what utilities customers want: dependability, an effortless experience, proactive and transparent communications, and to be treated as a person, not a number.” Combining innovative and personalised training with coaching and mentoring yields results, and has additional benefits, such


as making people feel valued and engaged, reducing damaging and costly recruitment churn prevalent in the industry. “Leaders need to create a permission culture. The fastest way to earn a team member’s trust is to give it to them. Employees who are empowered to do the right thing for the customers will grow in confidence,” says Prom. “This results in a positive cycle of ownership, innovation, and problem solving. Individual and teams that are free to express themselves within flexible boundaries make the best decisions for customers.” This approach is already yielding benefits for Lanes Utilities in its work as Thames Water’s wastewater network services maintenance contractor. Customer satisfaction scores improved each quarter in the year to April 2017.

Lanes Utilities puts emphasis on giving frontline managers skills and toolsets to coach and mentor team behaviours. The ability to recognise and reward positive behaviours and conversations creates a positive motivational environment, which is especially effective with today’s millennial workforce, says Prom. Coaching to “do it right” encourages behaviour modeling among peers. A spirit of helpfulness and positivity is contagious and much more fun than one of negativity and criticism. Prom admits these concepts are not novel. She says: “It’s common sense like eating healthily and exercising. But it’s amazing how many organisations have to keep discovering these truths.”




Customer Service Specialist at Severn Trent, Priya Odedra tells us how the Service Incentive Mechanism (SIM) has helped them put Customers First at the heart of Severn Trent’s strategy. In 2010, the water industry changed with the introduction of Service Incentive Mechanism (SIM), which placed an immediate emphasis on how water companies dealt with customers and their concerns. The move coincided with changes in Severn Trent’s existing journey, where the company had begun to proactively improve service for our customers. It was an exciting time for the industry which only fuelled our enthusiasm and the newly customer-centric approach, as opposed to an engineering-based business, across the whole of the business. We pride ourselves on embedding customers at the heart of everything we do and are committed to genuinely putting them first. By adopting, and truly believing in this approach, we have been able to consistently deliver a great experience to our customers in an ever-changing environment.


In practical terms, this means we are constantly exploring and considering what really matters to our customers and, in particular, our billing teams have stepped up to the mark in order to not only keep this momentum up for our customers but also to exceed their expectations by, for example, redesigning customer bills. When deciding what to do, we had to consider what information customers would want included on the new bill by understanding what aspects were really important to them. It was also important for us to ensure that information should be displayed so that they could instantly understand what they were reading in a manner that was meaningful to them. What we absolutely wanted to avoid was customers having to decipher difficult calculations or industry jargon. We know that every single one of our customers is unique and while some loved seeing

the detail on their bills, others just wanted to know the amount they owed quickly and clearly. We think we have managed to get the balance right as we have seen a reduction of customers querying their bill, with 10,500 fewer calls into our contact centres compared to the same four week period in the previous year. The feedback we are receiving from so many of our customers is hugely positive. We also recognise that our website is a channel that is being increasingly used by our customers in order to obtain the information they need to carry out tasks at their own convenience. Alongside that, we are also very aware that our customers are now more likely to use mobile technology when accessing the internet. Our figures show that more than half of our customers now prefer to use a mobile device to access our website which meant that,

FEATURE: IMPROVING CUSTOMER SERVICE when we started thinking about designing our new website, it became vital that we took that into account. For that redesign, we evaluated customers’ needs, expectations and behaviours, and created a website that is easy to navigate and which promotes all the things that are important to them. So we ensured that the new site could keep them informed on the progress of any work taking place near them in real time, and allowing them to find information that is relevant to them, quickly and easily, regardless of which device they prefer to use. We believe that making the site mobile friendly has led to a 36% increase in visitors who use some form of mobile technology to access it. For the redesign team it has been really pleasing to see our customers exploring the site and discovering vital information that they may have struggled to locate in the past. The third area where we have been concentrating our efforts is in completely overhauling the way that we deal with customers who need additional help. We absolutely understand that some of our customers are suffering from financial hardship,

and we are also seeing an increasing awareness about mental health issues that affect people and their everyday lives. We felt we could help these customers by providing additional assistance that alleviates some of the pressures they face and also help them on their journey. We know that vulnerability and affordability affects more than just these two groups of customers and we wanted to extend our assistance to all customers who may find themselves in a difficult life event such as divorce or bereavement. As a result of that, we decided to create a specialised team with the purpose of providing extra assistance to our customers who may find themselves in situations that could make them vulnerable. For example, we may provide help in the way they pay their bill or provide a personalised service that satisfies their needs. The team have been provided with specialist training by the Samaritans to help them best support customers, as well as receiving Mental Health First Aid training from specialised Occupational Heath teams. We are committed to ensuring that all customers who contact us

get the right help at the right time, regardless of who they speak to when they contact us so we’ve provided training to all our teams to ensure customers get the help when they need it. More than 50,000 customers have had help from the variety of support options we offer, as well as being dealt with by a team that has now received specialist training to be more sensitive. One customer who was unable to work due to anxiety, said, whenever she contacts us, our people are “brilliant”, helping her with her difficulties by being “patient, sympathetic and understanding”. Customer feedback in response to all of these initiatives has been brilliant, and has contributed to our current SIM performance, but, as a company, we are still not where we want to be. It is our belief that we can always do better for our customers and so we are constantly looking at evolving what we do in order to, first and foremost, ensure our customers have the best possible experience and, as a result of that, to improve our SIM score.

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FUTURE NETWORKS How future networks will act as the catalyst to improve water and wastewater levels of service, inform investment decisions and deliver excellent customer service.

Since privatisation, the UK Water Industry has seen significant change and achieved a great deal for customers and the environment. However, recently there has been significant change to the regulatory landscape. Totex, SIM and increasing customer expectations are now playing a greater role and are at the centre of business plans, alongside the recent introduction of increased competition and retail/wholesale separation. The move to outcomes, SIM and totex-based regulation has created a shift change in how we manage water and wastewater networks.

Customers and Communities

Mark Smith

Business Development Director RPS Water


Our customers and communities expect the highest levels of responsiveness, technical insight and quality; in short, right first time. The previous focus has been on outputs and asset renewal against a programme of predetermined deliverables. However, we now need a more network focused response, encompassing a “Strategy to Operations” approach. This approach takes into account all the strategic and operational tensions to reduce supply interruptions, blockages, flooding, complaints and costs.

It relies on sufficient water and wastewater understanding to ensure the right balance of operational, maintenance and capital investment is made to ensure outcomes are delivered in the most efficient totex-based manner. Effective evidence-based decision making to inform intervention definition is therefore key.

Evidence-Based Decision Making The need for resilient smart networks has caused a reassessment of data quality, sensor innovation and network configuration. We have managed the clean water networks successfully to a position where a step change is required, with sewer networks close behind as data quality and availability improve. However, despite these improvements in data quality and availability, we still rely on customers to inform us of network failures, whether this be supply interruptions, discolouration, sewer flooding or river pollution. We need to invest in innovative approaches to minimise the use of customers as “telemetry”.

FEATURE: IMPROVING CUSTOMER SERVICE We need to use good network data to pre-empt and prevent interruptions and sewer flooding, or at worst warn customers and mitigate impacts, thus improving customer experience. Sensors and data streams are becoming more and more affordable allowing greater flexibility of deployment. The ability to gather disparate data sources, organise and display them will improve network management. At RPS, we have developed Waternet™ and Wastewaternet™ information management tools to bring together disparate data sources into a single environment so that network engineers can proactively identify issues, determine root cause, and address issues before customers are inconvenienced through supply interruptions, flooding, blockages or sewer collapse. Traditionally loggers were considered to be fixed boxes inside a chamber. Advances in communication protocols and cheaper technology, as well as smart algorithms to analyse data trends and predict performance means we are now embracing permanent monitoring on a wide scale across water networks and increasingly on wastewater networks. Pressure loggers, turbidity monitors, chlorine residual monitors, sewer flow and depth sensors, rain gauges and equipment operation alarms are now being placed across whole networks in a move to make them SMART.

Additionally, we are now able to look at different kinds of data sources, for example twitter and social media, and perform data mining tasks on keywords to give us an insight into what customers are doing with their water supply, or how flooding is spreading across an urban catchment in response to changing weather. The ability to analyse, interpret and respond to these diverse data points will be key to enhancing the customer experience.

Critical to all this is understanding the totex nature of solutions and not compartmentalising capital and operational solutions. At RPS, we have enhanced our capability to deliver the “Strategy to Operations” concept by integrating strategic, engineering, operational and data collection services to provide clients with the necessary skills to achieve outcomes through the variety of approaches required.

Future Networks In order to link all the competing tensions together, we need a future networks approach, linking “Strategy to Operations” culture and ensuring all stakeholders are aware of high-level outcome requirements and the impact of their operations. This will make us think about the availability of accurate and timely data in order to drive excellence. With all this information comes insight and an understanding of how best to invest. For example, using real time data to proactively remove blockages to prevent flooding or pollution may give a more efficient solution than traditional sewer improvements or fixed jetting programmes. We can use this data to fully assess how operational interventions such as mains flushing ‘stack up’ against conventional and expensive mains rehabilitation schemes.

We see future networks as the catalyst to improve levels of service, inform investment decisions and deliver enhanced customer service. We also believe it will deliver no-build, low carbon solutions that minimises inconvenience to our customers and communities.

STRATEGY TO OPERATIONS RPS is the leading provider of professional and field-based services to the clean water and wastewater sector. We provide an outcome and customer focussed “Strategy to Operations” service. Our services include: • Smart Network Management • Design and Project Management • Network Modelling • Strategy and Regulation Support • Asset Data Acquisition


NORTHUMBRIAN WATER’S CUSTOMER JOURNEY Northumbrian Water provides water and sewerage services to over 1.3 million households across the North East of England and as Essex and Suffolk Water serves over 700,000 households for the provision of water only services. Customers are kept at the heart of everything we think, feel, say and do. by Greg Lee

Technical Support Advisor, Northumbrian Water

[Our mind-set values] Since 2015, OFWAT changed the way in which customer satisfaction is measured. With a greater focus on qualitative measures they use customer’s opinions on the service that is provided to give a score out of five, which accounts for 75% of the overall Service Incentive Mechanism (SIM) score. The remaining 25% comes from quantitative measures using data from unwanted calls and written complaints. This means that as a company, Northumbrian Water really need to understand the customer and the experience they have. For the year 2015/16 Northumbrian Water gained a qualitative SIM score of 4.38 which ranked 2nd amongst water and sewerage companies across the UK. In 2016, they developed the Unrivalled Customer Experience Strategy, setting out a clear goal of becoming industry leader for SIM, which would help them to become the number 1 Water and Sewerage Company. At the same time the wastewater directorate mirrored the company’s focus and created a customer taskforce aiming to overhaul the traditional engineering centric department to a co-creative team that looked at issues from a holistic point of view and would engage with customers throughout their journey. In order to deliver unrivalled service to customers, the taskforce needed to understand what an unrivalled service looked like. A series of workshops were held to map processes and recognise the ways in which customers connect with the sewerage department and critically, where it could be improved. Research formed an integral part of the preparations to help understand when customers would like to have contact, who they wanted to speak to and what methods of communication they preferred. The operational personnel within the taskforce strengthened this part of the research as they were able to provide insight into the interactions that they have had with customers from past experiences.


By April 2016 ‘touch points’ were developed which set out the customer’s journey in a clear and concise way, able to show defined moments where contact is made with the customer, what action is required and who is responsible for doing this. Each departmental process had a dedicated touch point journey with essential amendments to systems and procedures to be made, as well as rolling out the new approach to the teams. This was and will always be the most challenging part of a project; where a change in mind set is needed to deliver the most effective result. The taskforce was made up of representatives from each involved team. It proved beneficial for these members to deliver training to their peers, aiming to stress the importance of moving away from the comfort of ‘identifying a problem and fixing it’, to a methodical and consistent approach that would maintain the technical skills, yet emphasise the importance of communication with each and every customer. As a result, teams were more open to the changes coming from their colleague who had been able to shape the improvements based upon their ideas. The taskforce devised a supplementary document - ‘what your customer expects’. This set out the detail for interfacing with the customer whether this is in person, on the telephone or via written correspondence and how this should be personalised to the task and individual, using the company mind-set as a core theme. It was great to see taskforce members who were not used to presenting or formulating process changes rise to the challenge and learn new skills from the more experienced members of the group and over time become a key advocate for championing customer service within their team. A shift in focus towards the customers’ needs was furthered through the introduction of “Rant and Rave”, a system where customers can provide feedback through text message and offer a score out of 5 for how they would rate the service. These scores could be monitored against the touch points and would help to determine any correlations between meeting the touch points and receiving a positive score. The Rant and Rave system also allows for customers to give comments on the service that was provided, whether this was positive or negative the sentiment from this allows for the development of themes which can be analysed and after a period of time, trends identified. This provided great insight into what the customer wanted to see from Northumbrian Water and initiatives could be generated around these to keep momentum going and ever improve the processes.



PFC100 Controller: High performance packed into a smaller footprint

[Raveometer average score improvement] The past year has been a real game changer, with a 9% reduction in unwanted calls after the introduction of the touch points and overall reduction in escalated complaints by 63%. Because the taskforce offers regular updates to all wastewater teams that provide the touch points, the idea of co-creation is becoming more of a norm where time is taken to involve the customer within the journey ensuring a satisfactory resolution for all. In April 2017 Northumbrian Water became the national leader for SIM satisfaction in wastewater and joint leader overall. Jumping from an average score of 4.34 (2015/16) to 4.64 (2016/17) for wastewater. Success is celebrated in a variety of ways. For example when SIM targets are met or exceeded, the teams receive gifts to thank them for their hard work. This is combined with events and gestures of goodwill to staff and customers alike. For example a ‘Make my Day’ event took place across the North East and Essex and Suffolk regions. Customers received small gifts on the street, a selection of staff received a ‘wish’ like a trip to the cinema with family and some customers received a ‘wow’ which included a trip to Blackpool and afternoon tea.

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[Make my Day customer event] The hard work is set to continue to maintain the Number 1 spot with other ideas in the pipeline to consistently deliver an unrivalled customer experience.

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BRAVE NEW WORLD Unlike the novel, Brave New World, where a gloomy dystopian society cursed by technological developments is portrayed, the future of the partnership between water companies and technology is thankfully, much sunnier. So what does this mean for water businesses? It means that whether you are operating in household or non-household water markets, you need to engage purposely with Millennials to gain higher customer retention rates. Deregulation has begun for businesses, charities and not-for profit sectors, and it is too early to talk about the lessons learned. However, it goes without saying that customer engagement is changing and getting it right is imperative to a now very competitive playing field. Companies, old and new, operating in the non-domestic market need to know the nuances and actions of this powerful generation in order to compete.

Account director, Gentrack

Although it is not certain that the domestic water market will become deregulated, it is on the agenda and the onus on customer engagement will become far greater if this comes to fruition.

Intel predicts there will be up to 200B connected devices by 2020. Artificial Intelligence within the home, for example, social robots and smart speakers, like Amazon Echo of which there were 5.5 M units sold in 2016 will also become more prominent.

Adrian Alexandru, account director at leading water utility software company, Gentrack, explains how it is an optimum time for water and sewerage businesses to embrace a new era of superior technological advancement and engage with a bold generation of informed and knowledgeable consumers with high expectations.

Ofwat has suggested that in an open domestic water market, non-water related companies such as supermarkets and telecoms could buy water and sell it as part of their existing services. If this is the case, then all water companies need to ensure they are providing customers with a value added proposition that Millennials have come to expect from other service industries.

Undoubtedly, for home occupiers, this will mean a greater understanding of their energy and water usage. But also for water providers, these types of technology create a valuable opportunity to glean specific and meaningful data, allowing for more informed and tailored customer propositions.

Millennials, millennials, millennials

But this is going to take a considered and analytical approach. Gen Ys have grown up in a self-service, web-based culture with the expectation of flexible credit paths and payment options and companies should already be incorporating these services and platforms in their offerings.

Adrian Alexandru

In case you didn’t get the memo, Millennials are the emerging big drivers of consumer behaviour in almost every sector. Sometimes known as Generation Y, this group of young consumers is largely made up of 18 - 34 year olds and presently accounts for 22 % of the UK population. Millennials exhibit a preference for ‘real time’ digital engagement and according to New Energy Consumer Study, 41% of energy customers that fall within this age group interact with suppliers through social media channels. Unlike their Generation X predecessors, Millennials are not afraid to push buttons, they actively seek new experiences and are twice as likely to sign up for new technologies.


Water businesses also need gain a detailed understanding of the inevitable and sophisticated digital future, coupled with the growing consumer accessibility of these technologies. The Internet of Things, which sees all types of devices and physical entities, including buildings and vehicles, for example, connected through the internet, will play a greater role as all generations mature.

Companies need to prepare for a new world of technology and a ‘switched on’ generation by offering dynamic solutions, such as innovative pricing options, multi-product and service offerings and rapid switching capabilities. Equipped with greater customer insight and readiness for the future, a non-fictitious, digital utopia is there for the taking. Adrian Alexandru, Account Director Tel: +44 (0)208 173 4000 Email:

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Workers in the water treatment industry who enter the confined spaces of ducts, manholes and vaults need to trust that they can also get back out again safely. Although the definition of a confined space varies between jurisdictions, which leads to numerous local regulations, it is generally recognised as; ■■

A space that is mostly covered by permanent walls.


A space with typically little air exchange.


A space where hazards due to substances, contamination or compounds which exceed the normal danger level can occur.

Confined spaces include, but are not limited to, tanks, vessels, silos, storage bins, hoppers, vaults, pits, manholes, tunnels, equipment housings, ductwork, and pipelines. The International Labour Organization (ILO) of the UN and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), USA, estimates that worldwide around 200 people die each year due to accidents in confined spaces in industry, agriculture, and private households. Approximately two thirds of these accidents were caused by toxic atmospheres, which in 70 percent of the cases had prevailed there even before entering the spaces. Official national statistics rarely contain all accidents and the precise extent of its consequences (type of injury, severity of the injury, deaths). According to a study performed


by the University of Berkeley, California/USA, the situations with the highest accident rates are: Repair and maintenance work (24 percent of recorded cases), followed by cleaning work (12 percent) and inspections (11 percent).

What are the most common causes of accidents? The causes of accidents which occur during confined space entry work in the wastewater treatment industry vary: They include a lack of, or insufficient assessment of the danger, underestimating the danger, or the use of personnel who don’t have training for confined space entry work, despite all of the regulations. Other potential causes include underestimating the concentration of gases inside the canal or structure (oxygen content – OX, explosion risk – EX, toxicity – TOX) or unexpected biological processes such as rotting and fermenting processes. Workers and/or supervisors may have received training on how to behave in confined spaces, but they may have insufficient knowledge of how to use gas measurement and breathing protection equipment. Knowledge, skill and experience are often lacking even when it comes to checking the atmosphere inside a space immediately before the start of

work. Errors in judgement often result because the measurement is taken at the wrong location: During entry into a shaft, it is possible for CO2 or digester gas (a mixture including CH4, CO2, H2S, O2, and H2) to have formed and settled at different heights. This means that the atmosphere can appear safe when measuring from a safe position, while dangerous gas concentrations are present when the person bends down into the shaft. So it is important for workers in these areas to always carry a mobile gas measurement device and emergency escape equipment directly on their bodies. In addition to digester gases, the gases which are flammable and/or poisonous at certain concentrations and are typically found in wastewater treatment facilities include CH4, CO2, H2S, O3, CL2, NH3 and VOC’s. The formation of digester gas can also result in a lack of oxygen. An elevated oxygen concentration, for example due to leaking lines on welding equipment, can lead to the spontaneous combustion of oils and fats and also explosions. To ensure that the workers are protected when gases are present whilst working in confined space, they should use breathing protection.


WATER INDUSTRY REGISTRATION SCHEME If a development requires a new water main or sewer, the developer may ask the water or sewerage company to install the pipework. Alternatively, they may choose for their own contractor to do the work, which is known as self-lay. The water company will take over responsibility for self-laid pipes that meet the terms of its agreement with the developer or self-lay organisation (SLO) that carries out the work.

Jo Parker

Director, Watershed Associates Self lay has several advantages for developers. It may be possible to provide a multi-utility option which can save both time and money and provide better co-ordination of infrastructure provision. It may allow a developer to use the same project manager or contractor every time, wherever the work is carried out so that standard approaches can be developed. Some utility companies may offer a very competitive price as they want the opportunity to install energy networks. The Water Industry Registration Scheme (WIRS) has been developed so that contractors who want to design, project manage or install water mains for new developments can demonstrate that they can work to the standards required by water utilities. WIRS is backed by Water Utilities as it negates the need for them run their own approval schemes and as such, they encourage all WIRS providers involved in the construction of new water mains and services for adoption to obtain WIRS accreditation.


Any WIRS provider contracting to undertake contestable work (as defined by OFWAT and detailed in the National Self-Lay Code of Practice) can be accredited, and registered under this scheme. The scheme is recognised by all Water Utilities within England, Wales and Scotland. It enables WIRS Providers to tender for, and if successful, carry out design, installation and commissioning of water mains and services.

There are three main categories of accreditation available:

The Water Industry Regulation Scheme is operated by the Lloyds Register Group, a worldwide accreditation and inspection body and is used to independently assess service providers looking to work within the water industry. The controlling body of WIRS is the WIRS Advisory Panel (WIRSAP), which consists of representatives from water utilities and WIRS providers and has input from OFWAT, Energy and Utility Skills and Lloyd’s Register. The requirements of the scheme are discussed and agreed upon when the group meets every four months.

Design: for those WIRS providers who want to carry out the design aspect of the installation of the infrastructure.

Project Management: for those WIRS providers who don’t have construction site staff but want to engage in contract negotiations with clients for connection work and play a role in the adoption agreement with the relevant Water Utility.

Construction: This is divided into seven sectors that include: ■■

Work on development sites with mains up to 355mm diameter


Off-site work with pipe diameters over 355mm diameter


Service laying on development sites (where mainlaying is not done by the WIRS Provider laying services and service diameters do not exceed 63mm)


Making routine in-line mains connections (only allowable when a mainlaying scope is already held)


Construction of routine and non-routine under pressure mains branch connections (Scotland Only)


Permanent disconnections (Scotland Only)


Meter installation maintenance activities (Scotland Only)

The assessment for accreditation is split into two parts – partial and full. With the partial element of the process, the WIRS provider must be verified to ensure it has the requisite management systems, method statements and competencies and that their

FEATURE: WATER INDUSTRY STANDARDS health and safety capability is appropriate for the work being undertaken.

Full accreditation can only be attained upon the company being awarded work and undertaking the full scope of works for which accreditation was sought. An assessor will visit one or more of the sites where work is being performed to assess the competency and methods of work applied, to make sure consistency with the competency and method statements reviewed under the partial assessment process.

The partial accreditation allows for contractors who don’t have a track record in the water industry to gain a foothold as a WIRS provider in the water industry. If the company can demonstrate their competencies, they could be awarded partial accreditation and be able to bid for work.

The costs of accreditation are based on a set of standard charges and an information sheet outlining costs is available on the Lloyds Register WIRS website. The cost will depend on the scopes requested and the size of the WIRS provider.

Once successful, the company would be required to contact Lloyd’s Register who would undertake a site assessment on their first contract to enable them to gain full accreditation. Without the partial accreditation and subsequent registration phase it would be difficult for contractors with no water track record to enter the contestable market.


The Institute of Water has a part to play in WIRS as the scheme requires that contractors show they have competent staff. Included in this must be a technical advisor who must be at least an Incorporated Engineer. Registration through I Water provides an option for potential Technical Advisors. Ensuring other staff are Registered Technician Engineers can also help demonstrate competency and the CPD requirements for registration requirements will help maintain that knowledge.

The benefits of WIRS accreditation are:

For a company to achieve full accreditation, it must be verified that it has work control, contract change control, HR, Procurement and storage systems available to make sure work processes are consistent and competency is maintained both on site and in office-based support services.


accreditation under the scheme will provide the service provider with the following benefits


accreditation recognised by all water utilities and Water UK


independent assessment and registration process


assignment of an accreditation mark which will represent the achievement of a high technical, quality and safety standard

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PIGGING TECHNIQUE CLEANS 5KM WATER MAIN The cleaning and chlorination of a newly-laid water main that runs underneath the A1, the UK’s longest road, has been undertaken by HTC, part of the Aquam group. Contractor Balfour Beatty selected Aquam’s Pneuclean pipeline pigging and chlorination system on behalf of Anglian Water’s @One Alliance for the Kings Reach Growth Pipeline project in Biggleswade, Bedfordshire.

Highly effective Aquam’s PneuClean can deliver highly effective, affordable water mains cleaning and manganese removal. Hundreds of thousands of meters of large diameter trunk main (LDTM) have been successfully cleaned across the UK on behalf of the big utilities including Yorkshire Water, South West Water, Anglian Water and United Utilities. Pipe pigging reduces water usage and wastewater volumes compared with traditional water jetting and flushing techniques. It can also be used to chlorinate pipes using a pig-run post-cleaning, reducing chemical and water usage.

Four pig runs were undertaken along a 5km length of the 450mm-diameter high-performance polyethylene (HPPE) main. On the first run, a proving pig with a tracked sonde was propelled through the main, using two 900 cubic foot per minute (cfm) compressors and two 900 cfm dessicant dryers. Once the pipeline was proven to be pig-able, three train runs comprising a slug of water propelled between two pigs were sent along the pipeline. As each pig train travels, silt and soft deposits were collected from pipe walls, delivering an effective clean. The water is then collected for disposal and the used pigs replaced for subsequent runs until sampling shows the water complies with quality standards.

[Aquam pig-launching pod like the one used on the Kings Reach pipeline project.]


[Table showing capability of PneuClean technique versus traditional methods.]

Chlorination Once the cleaning was complete, a further run was made to sterilise the pipe with a chlorinated slug of water. By using water carrying a much higher concentration of chlorine at much lower volume than traditional techniques, typical contact time required is only 30 minutes, vastly reducing chemical and water usage. The capability of PneuClean to clean long lengths of pipe in one operation was particularly beneficial in this application, given that the main crosses beneath a busy trunk road. It means fewer excavations are necessary to launch and receive the pig trains than would be required using traditional techniques. The entire operation took only five days and was completed in March 2017. The PneuClean process produces much lower volumes of wastewater for disposal than conventional pipe cleaning methods, reducing carbon footprint for clients.



Increased productivity by 60-70% over traditional methods


Less disruptive than water jetting and flushing techniques


Reaches lengths of up to 10km in a single operation


Can be used on diameters from 150mm to over a metre


Improves water quality in mains


Minimises wastewater disposal requirement


Eliminates risk of damage to pipe and lining


Low-pressure operation reduces health and safety risk


Improves sustainability and reduces cost

[Dryers and compressors used for propelling pig runs on PneuClean projects.]



“WHEN THE WELL IS DRY… ...we know the worth of water.” The famous quote from Benjamin Franklin is as true now as it was in 1746. However, the introduction of radio transmission allowed for easier mass deployment and has become the industry norm. The market currently uses noise logging in several applications, from fixed deployment, with drive-by-surveying to collect the data, to “lift and shift” mass survey, where noise loggers are installed in an area of interest and data is gathered for a time and collected, before the loggers are installed in another location.

Mike Tennant

HWM director of sales and business development In both the UK and the wider world, there are many pressures on our water supply that endanger this most critical of resources. These include: ■■

Increasing population – Population growth, particularly in certain areas, is creating greater demand on water networks, with the number of households rising and high expectations on usage levels. Each person in the UK uses on average 150 litres of water a day.


Ageing infrastructure – Water distribution pipelines are coming to the end of their intended lifespan, leading to increased degradation and replacement of the network.


Water availability – Climate change and changing land use are altering the availability of water as a resource, requiring different strategies for effective management.

With these factors in play, it is important that we take available steps to address the problem, one of the most important of which is saving water through leak detection.

Noise logging – proven technology with pedigree Leak noise detection has existed for at least twenty years, using acoustic sensors to collect sound information from the pipe. This can then be analysed to separate leak noise from the background (cars, people etc.). Early units downloaded this data to PC, where it could be analysed, and this method is still in use today.


This acoustic sensor principle for leak detection is highly effective, with a great track record, but the management of large fleets becomes challenging, especially when considering data delivery and collection.

Fixed networks - acoustics and data delivery Fixed networks with automatic data delivery represent the next stage in the development of noise logging. Data generated by the noise logger is automatically sent to the user, removing the need to visit site to carry out data collection. Data transmission is achieved through a combination of GPRS cellular communication or SMS. The unit also sends an audio file for remote monitoring and correlation for leak confirmation. Finally, the new generation of fixed networks are entirely below ground, making them more secure, less intrusive in the surrounding environment and much more economical and practical to install than systems requiring above-ground infrastructure. The benefits of this approach are many, and it could change our approach to network management.

Changing the economics of leak detection Target leakage levels in the UK have traditionally been set using the economic level of leakage model. This model has changed to reflect the pressure on water supplies – the new model of SELL (sustainable economic level of leakage) requires a new approach, with water husbandry at its heart. Fixed networks with automatic data delivery have the potential to be revolutionary, as permanent deployment of detection technology significantly reduces the cost of leak detection overall. While initial capital costs are higher than

existing methods, the saving generated by eliminating labour-intensive field activity is large, making this a more economical method of leak detection in many areas of the network. Benefits of this approach include: ■■

Immediate notification – reduces run-time of a leak to a minimum and massively reduces water loss.


Removes the need for local site visits to gain information about the condition of the network – saves labour, operational carbon footprint and reallocation of resources.


Significantly reduces the need for street works – saves disruption and cost, as site visits are only required to pinpoint leaks and repair pipework.


Remote transmission of audio files for listening and correlation – reduces the likelihood and impact of false positives, as well as allowing field crews to be targeted at leaks with greater confidence.


Acoustic data can be immediately compared to DMA flow data – where a suspected leak corresponds to an increase in minimum night flow, there is a strong likelihood of a leak.


Identification of larger leaks – the system scans an area consistently, first identifying smaller, loud leaks before uncovering larger, quieter leaks that are often missed by other methods such as “lift and shift” sweeps.

In addition, existing technology is getting more difficult to deploy. Large-scale deployments require significant amounts of skilled labour, which is becoming both more expensive and more difficult to find. The disruption caused by street works and other activities in the field also makes the multiple-visit model of network management increasingly difficult to sustain. In summary, the water industry strives to improve networks to cope with the demands placed upon them in the future. The move to fixed network telemetry allows the user to run water networks at higher delivery efficiency without the need to continuously expend time and money. The smart cities of tomorrow will require smart water networks – fixed network telemetry helps move towards that goal.


HWM’S WATER PRESSURE MANAGEMENT PROJECT SAVES SEVERN TRENT 5 ML/D HWM’s Pegasus+ pressure controller replaced DMA and flow loggers. Multi-utility monitoring and telemetry specialist HWM has helped Severn Trent (ST) make significant water savings through a pressure management programme. Since April 2015, ST has installed 200 of HWM’s Pegasus+ pressure controllers, saving 5 Ml/d in the process. “The Pegasus+ has proven to be excellent value for money and it’s given us a calmer network,” said Graham Hollier, network pressure advisor at ST. ST’s network already contained thousands of HWM critical point (CP) and flow loggers. Linking Pegasus+ with its existing CP loggers allowed ST to operate the pressure controller in a learning mode. The data gathered automatically updated the product’s online software, giving the water company a more optimised network than if the data had been entered manually on-site. “It’s a really good, simple system,” explained Graham, “that allows us to see the data remotely, make adjustments and have good visibility as to where all the pressure controllers are in the system, which the guys here like using and which we’ve made considerable use of.”

Since Pegasus+ allowed for detailed multi-point pressure relief valve (PRV) control without a flow logger, the water company was also able to save money by replacing some of its district metered area and flow loggers, which were often located next to PRVs. ST considered several potential suppliers for the project and tested each pressure controller on its network calming rig in Warwick.


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ACCREDITED CALM NETWORK OPERATORS PASSES 6,000 MARK An online training initiative designed to reduce human error in the way hydrants, valves and pumps are operated has certified over 6,000 water network operators. Aquam’s Calm Network Training is accredited by the Institute of Water and ensures that candidates achieve an understanding of the causes of transient surge in the water network. Research shows that human error in how hydrants, valves and pumps are operated is a major cause of surge effects in water supply networks. Surge is a major cause of leaks and bursts in pipe infrastructure. United Utilities (UU) was first to take up Aquam’s online Calm Network Training after launch of the scheme in 2014. The water company made it mandatory for its contractors to complete the course, which involves a video tutorial and multiple-choice assessment. Over 3,000 operators of UU’s potable water network have achieved certification to date. Severn Trent Water has also made Calm Network Training mandatory and has trained over 1,600 users of its networks. Eight other UK utilities have also taken advantage of the comprehensive and flexible training programme. The benefits of this training go far beyond reducing surges, they include: ■■

Increased lifespan of existing infrastructure


Reduced leakage and water wastage


Fewer incidents of discolouration and contamination of the water supply caused by ingress


Fewer customer complaints about leakage, water quality and supply interruptions


Reduced risk of pollution from burst main run-off to water courses


Reduced traffic disruption caused by leak repair


Significant cost reductions

Aquam consultant Roman Boryslawskyj said, “The good news is that much of the harm done to pipe infrastructure can be avoided by modifying the way the network is operated. This can be achieved by ensuring operators are thoroughly trained, which utilities must do under their duty of care.


[Correct operation of standpipes can prevent damage to the water network infrastructure, reducing leaks, bursts and customer interruptions.] “It’s about protecting the network by operating in a calm environment; then you don’t disrupt customers. Each burst attracts an average of 35 complaints and costs £1,000 a time – and that’s just an average cost.” Ken Lacey, technical support officer - water regulations, United Utilities said, “We are delighted to be leading the field in training network operators to manage our infrastructure carefully and safely. The Calm Network Training course offered by Aquam can be undertaken by our own staff, our partners and other users of the network wherever they are and at whatever time suits them. “We have already seen the benefits in terms of reduced customer contacts and fewer bursts and leaks.” Dan Littlewood, senior technician, Severn Trent Water said, “We are already seeing the benefits of training users of our networks to do so safely and calmly. This is important not only to prevent damage to the pipes and prevent leakage, but also to maintain water quality and avoid disruption to customers and the wider public.”

Phil Walker, water services director, Aquam, said, “I am delighted that the online Calm Networks Training course developed by Aquam has proven so popular with utilities and contractors. The regulatory pressure is on to improve customer service and reduce supply interruptions, while simultaneously keeping bills low. “Calm Networks Training helps our utility clients reduce leakage, improve water quality, preserve pipework and cut costs. The benefit is on-going too, with best practice becoming embedded in those utilities that invest in routine training of standpipe operations staff throughout their supply chain and customer base.” He added, “At Aquam we also manage licensed standpipes for many UK utilities, so we feel we have a duty to help ensure that operators of the network know what they’re doing with this kit.” For further information, please contact: Phil Walker, Water Services Director, Aquam T: +44 (0)844 543 3540 E:


TALK TO THE EXPERTS IN STRUCTURAL REFURBISHMENT & PROTECTIVE COATINGS Anglian Water did! CSC Services recently brought a corroded pumping station wet well back into service. Concrete surfaces were repaired and a water based cementitious coating system specified and installed. This hard, durable coating with excellent resistance to water and hydrogen sulphide will significantly extend the life-span of the structure.

“I was very impressed with the work ethic and service provided by CSC Services. They worked effectively with the product manufacturer to provide the best refurbishment solution for Anglian Water.” Nick Hudson, Project Engineer, Anglian Water With over 18 years of experience in providing repair services and protective coatings, CSC Services offer a safe, reliable and quality service that is always guaranteed. CSC Services will provide the optimum solution for your coating or refurbishment requirement; installed to exact specification by fully trained and experienced operatives. CSC Services’ work in partnership with many of the UK’s leading coatings manufacturers. CSC Services T 0191 410 3444 E W

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Are you confident your re-lining works have a solid foundation?

The cleaning method employed shall leave the bore of the pipe free of tuberculation, deposits and loose or deteriorated remains of original coatings. Lining through standing water is regarded as severe water damage and the main shall not be returned to service until the fault has been rectified to the satisfaction of the Utility Representative. Iain continues, “From our assessment, although existing methods for preparation can address some of the requirements we feel that the TomahawkTM System offers distinct advantage in three key areas.”

Ensuring a dry substrate

Targeted investment in re-lining, either through spray liner systems or through CIPP (cured in place pipe lining) provides a costeffective method of extending the lifespan of buried infrastructure while reducing the risk of bursts and discolouration incidents.

tuberculation, biofilms, old bitumen or coal tar linings. The preperation process is viewed live using the TomahawkTM Scout camera system allowing the preparation team to provide assurance to the client that the works are completed to the correct standard.

Additionally, extending the usable life of existing assets and focusing on trenchless technology reduces environmental impact and embedded CO2 in comparison to traditional replacement solutions.

In this article, Panton McLeod’s Chief Technical Officer describes the current UK standard for mains preparation (IGN 4-02-02), and how the TomahawkTM System meets these requirements to provide best-in-class surface preparation for superior bond and long-term, leak-free performance.

Customer benefits can also be gained by reducing the duration of any remedial works, minimising impact especially when working in major urban areas. The correct preparation method is essential for successful re-lining that delivers true long term performance. Without adequate preparation, early failures of the lining can occur, resulting in repeated investment, reactive operational response to manage any customer disruption, and customer contacts that come with any unplanned variations in supply. Panton McLeod are supporting targeted re-lining investment through a strategic partnership with Canadian firm Envirologics. The TomahawkTM System uses a patented high vacuum low pressure airstream to draw abrasives through pipework, removing

Iain explains, “The key elements to consider when preparing the internal surfaces of a pipeline are:” n Consistent and thorough coverage. n Access to difficult areas such as service connections. n Dry, clean, dust free substrate. n Assurance the elements above have been satisfied.

The TomahawkTM System uses patented technology to draw abrasives through the pipework in a high vacuum low pressure airstream, it is the only system to able to employ this method, and by drawing the abrasives through and out of the pipework it also removes all dust, removed tubercules, debris and moisture from the main pipe section. It also uses targeted cleaning to generate a “Vaculation” effect to remove moisture from service connections and pipe joint inverts, other methods can leave these containing moisture, and during the delay between preparation and re-lining this moisture can re-enter the pipe body thus breaking the bond between pipe and liner leading to future failures.

Access to difficult areas

Working in a trenchless environment means remote access to the point of need. Traditional methods cannot actively target areas of specific need during the preparation process, this results in high levels of preparation on the easy to reach areas such as the main pipe wall only. Difficult and obscured areas such as behind service intrusions can be missed. By using their patented TomahawkTM Scout (a specialist camera system) as an intregral part of the preperation process the abrasives are deflected into these areas that would be missed by traditional scraping methods, or by other abrasive means.

“When we evaluated the TomahawkTM System we ensured these aspects were met, additionally the system had to meet our requirement to deliver the solution that was:” n Cost effective across whole asset life. n Sustainable. n Supportive for rapid return to service. The current IGN 4-02-02 givers guidance on preparation ahead of spray lining products such as the popular 3M Scotchkote Liner 2400 and 2100, and states: Prior to spray application of any resin material, the main shall be free from standing water. The quality of cleaning is paramount if coatings are to be applied successfully.

Consistent coverage

The inclusion of the TomahawkTM Scout is also key in providing assurance around consistent coverage while protecting project cost duration. The preparation works are monitored live by the operators to ensure all areas are cleaned back to the required IGN 4-02-02 standard. Use the QR code or link below to see the TomahawkTM System in action

Tel : 01896 663 330 • •

Panton McLeod Prioritise short and long term pipework investment using MTA Pipe Inspector® Panton McLeod are working with Austrian experts MTA Messtechnik to support clients in prioritising infrastructure investment. Their range of MTA Pipe Inspector® units are non-tethered multi-sensor inspection tools that enable the video-inspection of pipelines together with an integrated acoustic hydrophone, temperature gauge and pressure gauge for use in detecting leaks and evaluating pipeline integrity. MTA Pipe Inspector takes the guess work out of untethered acoustic only devices by coupling acoustic references with video confirmation. Moreover, it identifies air or gas pockets in pressure systems through visual observation, which is not possible with conventional methods. Along with continuous pressure information, the pipeline inclination and pressure zones can be evaluated. ®

MTA Pipe Inspector® is battery powered and untethered allowing it to be transported with the existing fluid. Standard equipment permits the collection of video, sound, pressure and temperature information for up to 10 hours. Where required extended

batteries can be installed for longer runs. Unlike tethered systems where inspection lengths are typically limited to less than 1,000 m, Pipe-Inspector is applicable up to 50 km on a single deployment, and can detect leaks with pinpoint accuracy down to 5l/h at 5bar. The team at Panton McLeod are excited to be supporting existing and new clients with this service, Jim Panton, Panton McLeod CEO explains, “Working with the team at MTA Messtechnik gives us the opportunity to support our clients to prioritise investment and drive efficiency in the allocation of resources.” “As a business we are focused on smart sustainable solutions to water challenges across the UK and Ireland. The ability to


target investment in infrastructure using the data collected by the MTA Pipe Inspector® is essential in this vision.” More information about MTA Messtechnik including a recent case study highlighting how MTA Pipe Inspector® identified a leak unnoticed by other above-ground techniques can be found at the Panton McLeod website To find out more about any of Panton McLeod’s services contact Paul Henderson on 0191 4274730 or

SMART TANKS, SMART NETWORKS Find out how the team at Panton McLeod can support you to improve the quality of water delivered to your customers without the need to change your onsite treatment processes. Visit our stand at the national conference in June and discuss how our specialised maintenance teams matched with the latest global technology can monitor water quality and asset condition within the network, targeting interventions only where needed.


Services include: n Storage Assets - Inspection, Cleaning, Disinfection, Decontamination and Repair n Distribution Pipelines - Inspection, Leak Detection, Flushing, Cleaning, Disinfection and Relining Preparation n In-Tank Treatment - Mixing, Residual Control and Optimisation, THM Removal, Elimination of Stagnation and Nitrification n Water Quality Support - Best Practice Training, Advice and Consultancy n Emergency Response - Full UK & Ireland incident response 24/7

Improving Water Quality throughout the network

Tel: 01896 663 330

@pantonmcleod •

INDUSTRY STANDARDS - HELP OR HINDRANCE? United Utilities think the former and allows them greater opportunities to innovate and reach out to the international water industry and play a vital role in the smooth running of the modern world. Standards influence the built environment around us, the quality of our food and water plus the everyday products we use. Standards play a vital role in the smooth running of the modern world, by safeguarding the quality and usability of the things around us making modern life both simpler and safer.

The International Power Symbol The standard symbol used to denote power standby on/off on electrical equipment is detailed in IEC 60417. It is a composite of the binary values “1” for on and “0” for off. The use of standardised symbols enables manufactures to produce standard products for use in countries with different cultures and languages. This standardisation makes equipment more accessible to users. [The clock at The Exchange, Bristol, showing both GMT and Bristol local time.]

Standardisation enabled the widespread adoption of complex machinery during the industrial revolution. The advent of mass production and interchangeability of parts made technology more accessible. The adoption of Joseph Witworth’s screw threads by UK railway companies in the mid 1800s demonstrated the benefits of standardised parts. The railways also brought about the standardisation of time. With the need to operate train timetables across Britain local time was no longer fit for purpose. Britain was the first country to standardise on time, with most towns and cities adopting Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) by 1855. Before the widespread adoption of GMT towns would set their own local time from sundials.


Early product standardisation did not cross between companies, with different manufactures working to different in-house standards. This limited interchangeability of parts for users and limited trade. To address these limitations the first national standards body, the British Standards Institution was established in 1901. To deliver the benefits of standardisation across countries, the International standards organisation (ISO) was created in 1947. Use of standards are voluntary in the UK, but can become legal requirements when adopted by regulators or when part of contractual agreements.


FEATURE: WATER INDUSTRY STANDARDS The UK Standards hierarchy Today industry specific standards support or expend on international and national standards. A hierarchy of standards facilities the development of national and company specific standards. This enables countries and industries to adopt standards to meet their specific regional or environmental requirements.

Standards provide many direct benefits to the water industry. They facilitate the harmonisation of technology and terminology. Enabling practitioners from different cultures and backgrounds to work together and share knowledge. This joint working enables standards to draw knowledge from many places, helping to develop sustainable, practical solutions. This across border harmonisation stimulates economic growth by simplifying international trade.

In the UK, many water companies develop in-house standards to support the design, construction, operation and maintenance of assets. These address location and operational specific requirements particular to the water company. Standardisation as a result of standard designs and standard operating philosophies delivers multiple benefits for companies with large asset portfolios. It easies and optimises asset operation by reducing variances between assets. Increased standardisation enables operators to work safely and efficiently across a wider number of assets. Water companies can have greater confidence in the outcome of new assets when supported by standard designs with proven operational records. In-house standards also provide a benchmark for designers to work from, reducing the design time required to deliver new assets. It is important however that standards do not stifle innovation and that opportunities are given for the testing of new technologies.

Within the last year I have taken an active role in the development of International Standards as a technical secretary on two working groups.

Lyndon Trinder

Civil Engineer, United Utilities

I’m now working with colleagues from other water companies, manufactures and suppliers from around Europe to update the suite of European wastewater standards for large wastewater treatment plants.

“If you think of standardisation as the best that you know today, but which is to be improved tomorrow, you get somewhere” – Henry Ford


Standards contribute £8.2 billion to the UK Economy


37.5% of UK productivity growth is attributed to standards


£6.1 billion of additional exports per year attributed to standards

I took this role as a development opportunity and have found the work to be challenging but rewording. As an engineer I use standards every day and my work on international standards has given me a greater understanding of their development. This work has given me the opportunity to meet and work with experts from across the world.

After working with experts from around the world to help develop the first international Standard for Drinking water and wastewater systems.

This approach can enable continuous improvement through the incorporation of lessons learnt and better quality management. Standards are all about exploiting what we already know, freeing up time to focus on exploring what we don’t.

Economic benefits of standards

Practitioners who draw knowledge from standards and combine it with their own engineering skills can be confident that their end product will operate efficiently and safely. With water companies facing ever more difficult cost and service challenges standards can provide the technical background to support the delivery of new and optimisation of existing assets. For standards to succeed experts from across industry, including suppliers, contractors and clients need to support their development and adoption of lessons learnt and innovation.

Andrew Wall

Knowledge & Standards United Utilities

The insight into the mechanisms used by ISO, CEN and BSi to create maintain and withdraw standards is invaluable when it comes to managing our own suite of Standards within United Utilities. Not to mention the fantastic opportunity for personal development by constantly learning good practice from other organisations and countries.

Source: BSI



INTRODUCING THE LYSOTHERM® SYSTEM TO THE UK LysoTherm® is a patented system for the thermal disintegration of organic sludge, especially sewage sludge. It is specially designed to enable the efficient, costeffective and safe disintegration of sludge. LysoTherm® is a thermal process, without the use of steam, to enhance anaerobic digestion of organic sludge which has added advantages over many of the alternative solutions available in the UK. The system offers the capability of increase gas yield and the dry matter content in the digested, dewatered sludge which leads to increased digestion capacity, also to an increased potential to recover phosphorus as a magnesium-phosphate from the sludge.

Combine this with the LysoTherm® process’ ability to decrease organic residues in digested sludge, reduce polymer consumption used in the dewatering process, reduce digestion time and the amount of sludge to be disposed of whilst reducing foaming and viscosity within the digester, all helping to lead to the elimination of pathogenic bacteria.

How the LysoTherm® system works ■■

Sludge is fed via the sludge pump (feeding pump,1) into a multistage heat exchanger system. The feed is a continuous process.


Pre-heating takes place in the first stage of the heat exchanger system (2), then the sludge is heated up to reaction temperature within the tube reactor (3)


The proper disintegration process takes place at the pre-determined reaction temperature in the disintegration reactor (4) where the sludge usually remains for 30 - 60 minutes. After the disintegration is completed, the sludge is cooled down in the cooling stage (5) to the temperature required for entering the digestion tower; alternatively, it can be mixed with cold primary sludge in order to be cooled down to digestion temperature.


The system is heated via two heating circuits: the thermal oil circuit (6) to create the necessary process heat in the pipe reactor. The process heat is typically recovered from the exhaust gases of the CHPs. The regenerative circuit (7), using water as heat transfer medium makes the heat recovered from the disintegrated sludge in the cooling stage available for pre-heating.

The LysoTherm® system is flexible and versatile. In addition to the thermal disintegration of excess sludge (primary disintegration), it can also be used for the conditioning of digested sludge (secondary disintegration). The Eliquo Water Group have successfully installed the LysoTherm® system in several European locations and now the system is available in the UK through Eliquo Hydrok.


Discussions with several UK Water Companies about the LysoTherm® system, with test sites planned for the near future, have begun. To discuss LysoTherm® contact Lewis O’Brien, Technical Director, 01726 861900,

SYSTEMS AND MACHINES CONTROLLED, MONITORED AND MAINTAINED FROM ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD An Industry 4.0-ready wireless controller that allows machines and systems to be remotely controlled and monitored is available for the water sector from WAGO Wireless data transmissions are used for communication with machines and systems such as pumping station control, condition monitoring and energy measurement. It is ideal for difficult to access areas, such as those found in the water industry. As such, the PFC200 controller includes a 3G modem to connect to the mobile phone network to control, monitor, maintain and run diagnostics on decentralised machines and systems from anywhere, so long as network coverage is available.

With 600 MHz of processing speed, the PFC200 is capable of handling the automation of individual machines through to complex applications and algorithms. It has low energy consumption and passive cooling, and with no battery and no moving parts it is maintenance-free. A wide variety of fieldbus configurations along with specialist I/O modules specifically for water process applications make it suitable for a diverse range of water industry machine and process automation tasks.

Accessing the controller via the Internet saves time and money by centralising control and monitoring capabilities, with modern data networks taking over the routing, communicating and delivery of data packets.

The 3G modem allows error-free distance monitoring and secure data transmission, ensuring data cannot be accessed by unauthorised third parties. When accessed via the mobile network, the controller sets the encryption using a virtual private network (VPN). Different protocols such as OpenVPN and IPsec can be used depending on operator preference. The VPN tunnel transmits all data encrypted at SSL and TLS.

The PFC200 controller fits into WAGO’s SYSTEM 750 automation system and is equipped with a 3G modem with standard (mini) SIM card. The only requirements for the mobile communication functions are a valid mobile phone contract and a SIM card. The PFC200 provides wireless GPRS Internet connectivity and allows bidirectional communication via SMS. The settings for the mobile communication network can be configured directly from the web-based management of the controller. WAGO Limited

In addition to the standard version, WAGO’s PFC200 is available with an extended temperature operating range from −20 °C to +60 °C and as a telecontrol variant. The PFC200 telecontrollers support IEC 60870-5-101, -103 and -104, IEC 61850, IEC 61400-25 protocols, as well as DNP3. Telephone: 01788 568008


INTRODUCING LysoTherm® Thermal organic sludge disintegration No steam generation required Increases gas yield

Increased potential for phosphorus recovery and elimination of pathogenic bacteria.

Increases digestion capacity and reduces digestion time Increases dry matter content in digested, dewatered sludge Reduces polymer consumption in dewatering process Reduces sludge disposal amount

ELIQUO HYDROK LTD I T 01726 861 900 I


THE IMPORTANCE OF STANDARDS Standards. They are practically everywhere. But why are standards so important and which ones really matter in the water industry? Mike Shepherd, Technical Secretary to Water UK Standards Board takes us through their purpose and how Water UK are working to influence the drafting of the standards that are important to the water industry. Everybody needs standards in their lives but for the purposes of this article, the subject is confined to those standards which are published by various organisations and which are used in purchasing specifications for good and services. Standards are important as they allow end users to specify a level of performance for materials and/or services that ensures fitness for purpose and a satisfactory service life. They allow manufacturers and service providers to offer products that are suitable for a large range of customers so offering economies of scale, especially as global sourcing is becoming increasingly prevalent, and hence lower costs to the customer. They also mean that multiple suppliers can offer similar products thereby ensuring that there is competition in the market place. Standards also allow compatibility of products from different manufacturers and so purchasers can benefit and obtain best value for money without compromising quality. Standards can be written by various organisations varying from individual companies to industry bodies such as Water UK to national standards bodies such as British Standards (BSi) to the international standards making bodies, CEN and ISO. There is a recognised hierarchy of standards however as shown in the figure below: Heirarchy of Standards



Generally, the highest ranking standard should be used. Most importantly for UK utilities, the EU Public Procurement Directive (PPD) requires that EN standards must be used where they exist and all other standards must be withdrawn once an EN with the same scope is published. Not all ISO standards are published in the UK and their use, while considered by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) as best practice, is not compulsory. The figure also shows the Vienna Agreement. This is a mechanism agreed whereby an ISO standard can become adopted as an EN standard where there is no CEN equivalent and hence come under the PPD requirements. These are published as EN ISO standards. The mechanism does not work in reverse, i.e. EN standards are not adopted by ISO.


International standards are the most numerous now and BSi estimates that roughly 95% of its work concerns international standards. All standards, except individual company standards, are written by drafting groups comprising representatives from manufacturers, test houses and end users. For BSi standards, membership is drawn from volunteers nominated by the relevant trade and industry bodies, such as Future Water and Water UK. For international standards, representatives from the relevant BSi “mirror� committee are nominated by BSi as Principal UK experts. A balanced representation is necessary to get a standard that is fit for purpose and addresses the needs of all parties. However, the views of the end users should be considered the most important as they ultimately have to live with the products throughout their service life. Sadly, end user participation is lacking in international standards work. This is partly because of the cost of attending meetings overseas and also, for the water industry, because only the UK has companies large enough to provide international representation. Water UK, through the Water UK Standards Board, is very active in influencing the drafting of standards which are important to the industry. It has a Standards Management Plan (StaMP) that ensures its activity matches the strategic aims of the industry. To this end it relies on the Standards Champions in each Company to take soundings and give advice. The Plan currently supports representation of its members on around 180 standards on national and international committees, via water company volunteers and consultants, some of whom are retired members from the industry with experience and specialist knowledge. Important work that they are engaged in at the present time cover such key topics as water mains and sewer rehabilitation, products suitable for disposal to the sewerage system, manhole covers and frames, treatment chemicals and pipes and fittings standards. They are also active on service standards such as leakage control and continuity of supply. Water UK is currently making a major effort to improve its level of representation on BSi and international committees and is looking for more volunteers. Each water company has appointed a Standards Champion to support this activity and anybody who wishes to get involved in this very worthwhile work, which really is a superb CPD opportunity, should contact the author who will put them in touch with their Standards Champion. As well as working in the national and international arenas, Water UK also produces Water Industry Specifications (WISs) and Information and Guidance Notes (IGNs) to cover gaps where no other standards exist. These are usually identified by member companies. Recent publications have been WIS 4-3208v4 for the fusion welding of polyethylene pipes and fittings, WIS 4-02-03 for the spray lining of service pipes and IGN 4-01-03v2 for the pressure testing of pipelines. Work is currently under way on a WIS for the spray lining of sewers and one for the training of polyethylene fusion jointers. All WIS and IGN documents are free issue and can be downloaded from


QUALITY PIPE CUTTING & CLEANING TOOLS NOW AVAILABLE IN THE UK An exclusive new deal between Finnish manufacturers Renssi and Seweri and UK distributor Source One Environmental (S1E) sees their high-quality pipe cutting and cleaning tools available to the UK market for the first time. Both manufacturers are owned by the same group, making similar tools, but Renssi’s tools are made of carbide while the Seweri range is manufactured from stainless steel. Both ranges include chain knockers, with cable and cable covers. The Renssi range also includes brushes, cutters and sandpaper holders, while the Seweri range includes circular chain knockers. “These product ranges are of exceptional quality; handmade to the highest standard,” commented Glenn Cartledge, Managing Director of S1E. “They are essential kit for contractors, so they complement our current Pipe Doctor product range, whilst maintaining our commitment to offer the best to the market.”

All tools in these ranges are rotated by drill or other mechanical equipment, for swift and effective use. They are ideal for the preparation of pipelines prior to spot repair or lining, and the Renssi cutters can be used to quickly cut holes for lateral connections or to open up a closed pipeline.

“We are looking forward to an effective partnership with the Renssi and Seweri teams. We believe that these tools will be warmly received by the British infrastructure repair market and will quickly become invaluable to British contractors,” stated Glenn.

The chain knockers in both ranges follow a unique design created by Renssi, in partnership with their customers, to be more effective and longer-lasting. The ranges feature a large number of different adaptors so the tools can be used with contractors’ current equipment, regardless of make.



THE YOUNG WATER PROFESSIONALS MOVEMENT COMES TO BATH For someone at the start of their career in water, the University of Bath was the place to be in April as it hosted a total of 260 young water professionals across three events.

Bath hosts first ever UK Wetskills event

It aims to promote cross-sectoral collaboration and foster potential new partnerships across Europe, by empowering knowledge and cultural exchange.

The University’s Water Innovation & Research Centre (WIRC@Bath) in collaboration with the Wetskills Foundation, successfully organised the first ever UK edition of the Wetskills Water Challenge. This is a pressure-cooker program for students and young professionals from across the world with a passion for water.

Bath hosted a group of 12 talented young water professionals from multiple cultural and scientific backgrounds who worked in transdisciplinary teams and formed innovative solutions for realworld challenges, such as flooding prevention, stakeholder engagement and resilient urban planning.

The event took place at the University’s Claverton campus over a two week period and was supported by the Bath Institute of Mathematical Innovation (IMI), the University’s Alumni Fund, Wessex Water, the Water Authority of Delfland, the European Water Traineeships and the Municipality of Westland. Expert input from across the UK water sector, including Bath & North East Somerset Council and the Environment Agency, assured the scientific robustness of the event’s outputs.

The Future of UK Coastal Research – 13th UK Young Coastal Scientists and Engineers Conference The 13th UK Young Coastal Scientists and Engineers Conference (YCSEC) provided a unique opportunity for leading young coastal scientists and engineers working in academia and industry throughout the UK to present their work and network with their peers. Building on the success of previous conferences, the 13th YCSEC brought together over 60 early career researchers and practitioners from more than 30 UK and overseas universities, research institutes and companies for two days of fascinating presentations and exciting discussions. To open the conference, Professor Ad Reniers from Delft University, an internationally renowned coastal modeller, gave a highly thoughtprovoking keynote presentation on ‘Recent advances in modelling of wave impacts on complex coasts’. Over the two day event, there were 27 outstanding presentations on topics including coastal tourism, beach morphology, wave processes, ocean engineering and port operations.


In addition to the talks, 17 posters were displayed facilitating discussions during networking sessions. The finale of the event focussed on bringing together the research students and early post-doctoral students in a friendly and collaborative environment, which was successfully achieved with a lively and entertaining conference dinner at the Tramshed in Bath.

The Young Water Professionals conference The water sector recognised some years ago that it was ageing and that it needed fresh talent if it was going to solve future important challenges. With this in mind, the International Water Association (IWA), the largest international network of water professionals with members in 130 countries, began to actively push for higher visibility and empowerment of Young Water Professionals (YWP). The UK YWP Chapter is one of the strongest in the world and its annual conference is one of the largest gatherings of YWPs and offers a tailored conference for professionals emerging in the water industry. Organised by the University of Bath as part of its 50th anniversary festivities, together with a number of partners including Black & Veatch, Wessex Water, The Foundation for Water Research, the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Institution for Chemical Engineers, the conference brought together 200 speakers and participants from academia and industry, from the UK and abroad. The scientific and organising committee involved more than twenty early career and senior professionals to deliver a program packed with presentations, workshops, discussions, new ideas and opportunities for career development.

After a welcome speech by the University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor Prof Bernie Morley, and the Chairs of the conference, Ana Lanham and Marta Coma, the tone for the conference was set by an inspiring series of short talks by senior and mid-career professionals from industry, consultancy and academia in a session entitled “My career in water�. There were four workshops on breaking barriers in career development, unlocking the power of data in the water sector, the importance of cross-sectoral communication and ideas for better public engagement, all facilitated by professionals in the field together which provided attendees the opportunity to learn and develop new skills. Excellent keynote speakers delivered a wide perspective of the challenges the sector is facing from the importance of communication and social sciences across the water sector, to the imminent DNA revolution, as well as the challenges to the sector and to the UK utilities.

We can help you reimagine your water R&D

Water Innovation & Research Centre

Through the Water Innovation and Research Centre at the University of Bath our experts work with industry, academia, and other stakeholders to tackle the fundamental issues surrounding sustainable water. Through WISE, our Centre for Doctoral Training in Water Informatics: Science and Engineering, we work with collaborative partners to train the next generation of skilled water scientists and engineers. To explore a partnership with water research experts and students at the University of Bath for your organisation, contact


SHOULD WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY BECOME AN OFWAT OUTCOME? As a Chartered Environmentalist working in the water sector for over 10 years, predominantly as a sustainability professional (rather than an environmental professional), I’ve witnessed many changes, from the carbon evolution in PR09 to the outcomes focus in PR14. Mandhy Senewiratne

The event, to be held in late June, is targeted at utility, construction and manufacturing sectors to raise awareness and provide a platform for candid discussions.

For many, there is perhaps, little distinction between “environment” and “sustainability” and whilst there is certainly over-lap between the two disciplines, “sustainability” is unachievable unless “environmental” requirements have first been satisfied.

But I have often wondered if we as environmental and sustainability professionals were doing enough. I decided to ask designers their thoughts and their responses raised concerns.

Principal Sustainability Consultant, Fyrefly

Environment is largely compliance and regulation, and is concerned with preventing environmental incidents and ensuring that required permits and permissions have been achieved. Sustainability predominantly concerns itself with innovation, no-build solutions and seeking alternate low-carbon solutions, climate change mitigation/adaptation amongst others. In an ideal world, environment and sustainability work together ensuring compliance, innovation and greater community and environmental benefits. However, sustainability is not a compliance requirement. Be they environmental or sustainability professionals, my colleagues and I have strived to keep the environmental agenda at the forefront, although specifically supporting the UN’s World Environment Day (WED) initiative has been a challenge. Many Institute of Water regions host their own events regarding WED with the South-East Area being no exception. We host an annual devil’s advocate event (now it’s 4th year), whereby speakers take on the role of an Environmental Philistine and argue against the UN’s selected theme. For example, the UN 2017 official theme of “Connecting People to Nature” has been mocked-up to “Disconnect with nature – Technology can take its place. It will increase communication, health and profit!”


Most felt that the focus was on data collation, reporting, calculating carbon and achieving KPIs rather than providing adequate resources on the ground to support and engage with design and construction teams, to help research and implement innovative solutions. Surprisingly environmental and sustainability professionals also agreed that resources were lacking and that to truly embed a culture of going further than simply compliance, top down support was required. And that perhaps designers were often hesitant to engage with environmental and sustainability disciplines.

Or perhaps a more joined-up effort by Society for the Environment, Engineering and Science Councils and the likes of Water UK, UKWIR and EA are required, along with the counsel of those that are directly engaged in change management such as Samantha O’Hara (Technical & Performance Coordinator, Veolia Middle East). Sam, a Chartered Environmentalist offered advice on how to successfully engage more challenging stakeholders “By addressing each nationality, with their own working approach, to connect with the environment that concerns them the most!” Whilst there is still some way to go before World Environment Day ethos is successfully embedded within the water industry, there is clearly much passion and enthusiasm, and agreement that change is needed from all parties concerned. A good sign for the future!

Designers responded by suggesting that there wasn’t often any time to undertake sufficient engagement with us. Or indeed the budget to go beyond the project scope to achieve greater community or environmental benefits. They added that consistent engagement is required from environment and sustainability professionals to build up a greater level of trust between the disciplines, particularly for initiatives which are not compliance based. If nothing else all parties concerned agree that resources are lacking and that there needs to be a greater focus on sustainability and the environment.

Join the Institute of Water South East Area on the 20th July for their alternative World Environment Day event Let's Disconnect from Nature! and discover the true value of the environment we have.

In the water sector where Ofwat determines the flow of action, perhaps World Environment Day should become an additional outcome? events

To book, visit:


COLLABORATIVE PROGRAMME MANAGEMENT SUCCESS As part of their Framework Agreement for screens and screenings handling with Wessex Water, HUBER Technology have been engaged with Wessex Engineering and Construction. This began at the start of the 2017 Capital Maintenance programme of screens upgrades and replacements to develop ideas and solutions for 11 sites throughout the region. Marc Chalk, Head of Screens Programme from WECs says ‘’we have collaborated early in the year with HUBER Technology who have provided early sketches, 3D designs and specialist input and ideas to ensure we have the correct solutions when we need them. By working at an annual programme level we can ensure production slots are available for when we need to receive the machines on site, ensuring we deliver efficiently and avoiding delays. HUBER Technology understand our programme and can schedule their manufacturing accordingly’’

For more information please contact us Tel. 01249 765000 or



UK FIRM’S SOFTWARE WINS KEY AUSTRALIAN BUSINESS AWARD! In an Australian first, SEAMS a leading UK-based software company in partnership with AECOM, has won a major award with its Australian client, ICON Water. ICON Water has been awarded the AMCouncil Asset Management Award 2017 in the category for Asset Management Cost/Risk/Performance. The award recognises excellence in the management of physical assets through their life cycle and showcases use of best practice Asset Management systems and processes. SEAMS and engineering consultancy AECOM, were appointed by Australia’s ICON Water (who provide water and sewer services to the Australian Capital territory, with a network of approximately 3,100km of underground pipes serving 165,000 customers),. Making use of SEAMS’ investment planning expertise and Enterprise Decision Analytics (EDA) software, ICON Water were able to optimise their sewer asset intervention strategy to achieve their risk, cost and performance targets over a 20 year

period. The outputs supported their dialogue with stakeholders and informed their 2018-2023 regulated sewer investment plan. Richard Hawkins, Accounts Director at SEAMS, said: “We were thrilled to be selected by ICON Water to work with them and AECOM on this project, and for ICON Water to win this award with our software makes us immensely proud. We’ve invested a lot of time and energy into developing gamechanging technology that’s unique in its field and this award means a lot.” Andrew Behn, (Project Lead) at ICON Water, said: “For Icon Water, this approach has delivered clear articulation and understanding of the balance of cost, risk, and performance with regard to our sewer network. The application of SEAMS’ EDA is the first of its kind in Australia.”

“The new processes and systems, delivered in partnership with SEAMS and AECOM has helped us immensely in identifying and determining various impacts on levels of services into the future and overall benefits and costs under a number of different investment and intervention scenarios. This award is recognition of the benefits of using best practice asset investment planning.” SEAMS was founded in Sheffield, UK in 2002 and has since grown to become one of the UK’s leading asset management software providers, working with infrastructure based organisations across the globe to help reduce costs and improve service. For more information about SEAMS, visit


ENCORE® 700 - PRECISION DOSING, BUILT TO LAST A need for robust, reliable and consistently high performing chemical dosing systems has never been greater within our treatment industry. With reliable, high performing long life assets, operators can turn attention to forward planning and innovation for continual gains and wider treatment advances. The Encore®700 diaphragm and plunger metering pumps are a solid, no risk step in this advancement. Proven to operate decades in service, consistently delivering high metering performance across a vast array of chemicals it stands proud among its peers in today’s choices of chemical metering pumps. Supplied and supported from Water Process Solutions in Kent, the pumps are configured specifically to suit each application - this ranges from simple water metering through classic treatment chemicals such as poly, lime, alum, hypo, caustic, ammonia and acids to perhaps less obvious fluids such as hydrazine, oil and vinegar. The Encore®700 is a non loss motion pump, it is driven by a rotating crankshaft, where the eccentricity can be smoothly adjusted during operation. There are no return springs, and the diaphragm or plunger moves with a simple harmonic motion. The fluid velocity profile is sinusoidal at all stroke lengths; adjusting stroke length simply alters the amplitude of the sine wave. This


design allows pump valves to operate with far greater efficiency and minimal system vibration. This design and build quality enables metering precision, reliability and longevity. The Encore®700 can be configured to dose a wide range of chemicals with capacities of 2500 l/h and Plunger discharge pressures capable of 200 bar. Please contact us here at Water Process Solutions to discuss how the Encore®700 can benefit your metering application. Contact us: +44 (0) 7557363728


AFFINITY WATER CHANGING THE ECONOMICS OF LEAK DETECTION WITH PERMANET+ HWM chosen as partner in move towards permanent monitoring to reduce leakage. Affinity Water, Britain’s largest water-only utility serving 3.6 million people in south-east England, has partnered with multi-utility monitoring and telemetry specialist HWM to target significant reduction in leakage rates using PermaNET+ fixed network telemetry. “Using the HWM PermaNET+ solution, we can continuously monitor 25 per cent of our network, identifying leaks in a matter of hours, rather than the days it takes using conventional techniques and technologies,” said Drew Ritchie, managing director of wholesale operations at Affinity Water. Affinity already uses HWM datalogging technology to monitor its network’s performance, but the addition of PermaNET+ will significantly enhance leak detection across the network. PermaNET+ represents the next stage in the development of noise logging. Data generated

by the noise logger is automatically sent to the user, removing the need to visit sites to carry out data collection. Data transmission is achieved through a combination of GPRS cellular communication or SMS. The unit also sends an audio file for remote monitoring and correlation to localise the leak position. PermaNET+ is located entirely below ground, making it less intrusive and more practical for large-scale deployment. These features are critical to the long-term leakage reduction plan of Affinity Water, which has set ambitious targets for improvement of its network. “Of all the UK water companies, at Affinity Water we’ve set ourselves the largest percentage leakage reduction over the current five-year [AMP6] planning period,” explained Drew. “We’re achieving this with HWM’s PermaNET+, challenging industry thinking and methodologies to change the economics of finding leaks.”

By permanently monitoring water network infrastructure without extensive site visits, PermaNET+ identifies leaks more quickly than traditional methods and allows for rapid deployment to fix any leaks that do occur. This significantly reduces both water loss and the cost of identifying leaks within a water network. The programme will be completed in May 2017, with the installation of 20,000 PermaNET+ systems. This represents a long-term commitment to improved leakage reduction from Affinity Water, as Drew explained: “We’re looking forward to working with HWM over the next 10 years to enhance the system and use leakage information in new and innovative ways. Our customers deserve the best. Together, we will meet the challenges defined in our business plan.”

VARIABLE SPEED DRIVE CUTS RISK OF SEWERAGE LEAKS Severn Trent Water has cut the risk of flooding homes with sewage overflow by installing an ABB variable speed drive (VSD) within a pump control system. The new control system is switched on if the primary programmable logic controller (PLC)-based wash water control system fails, avoiding the need to use an emergency tank which only has capacity for eight hours of incoming sewage. The wash water is a critical part of the wastewater treatment process at Severn Trent’s Stoke Bardolph facility near Nottingham. It is used to clean the screens at the inlet works. If no wash water is available, the screens become blocked, the water level in the inlet channel rises and the inlet screw pumps turn off to prevent the screen house from flooding.

The six pumps controlling the wash water are usually controlled by a PLC, but this has suffered a number of failures over the last five years caused by the controller’s memory loss, which have led to it going offline. When this happens, no wash water is available to clean the inlet screens. The treatment process stops and sewage arriving at the site needs to be stored in an emergency tank until the system can be put back into operation. Failure to cure the PLC problem within eight hours risks the sewage storage tank overflowing, potentially inundating the homes of local residents with raw sewage. Dorn designed a system that would act as a back up to the main PLC while it was out of service. This is based on an ABB machinery drive, ACS355, acting as a PID controller. The drive uses a watchdog relay to monitor pulses from an output on the PLC. When these pulses are not detected, because the PLC has gone offline due to a failure, the drive goes into action.

The drive controls two wash water feed pumps that pump water into a buffer tank. It monitors the level of water in the buffer tank and starts the pumps when the water level becomes too low. At the same time, it opens an inlet valve into the tank from the pump lines. Dorn says: “I chose the ABB solution because of its compact size that fitted the restricted space we had available. I also know from long association with ABB that its products are reliable, have the functions I need and are easy to use.”


ANGLIAN WATER USES MAPPING TOOL FOR RETROFIT SUSTAINABLE DRAINAGE SYSTEMS (SUDS) As part of Anglian Water’s plans to shape and develop its surface water management strategy, they have been working with a specialist team at engineering and design consultancy, Atkins, to look at the opportunities for using Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS) within existing communities in their area to manage surface water. By Zorica Todorovic & Neil Breton

Associate Director / Senior Modeller, Atkins SuDS are increasingly being explored as a way to manage surface water by water companies due to the range of wider benefits that they can provide for customers. These benefits include a decrease in the need to pump water – helping to reduce energy costs and reducing carbon; an increase in green space which helps to improve local amenity; and also an increase in capacity that is created in the water infrastructure, meaning that there is more room to accommodate future growth in communities. The Atkins team used its industry-leading SuDS StudioTM toolkit to analyse the Anglian Water region and to identify locations where SuDS could help to manage surface water.

What is the SuDS StudioTM toolkit?

Using SuDS StudioTM at Anglian Water

The SuDS StudioTM toolkit is a unique geospatial tool that identifies areas where there is the potential to implement SuDS and then selects them based on the most cost-beneficial feasible solution. It does this by inputting a range of GIS data and other datasets such as flood zones, listed buildings, topography etc. to ensure the assessment is robust. It is different to other mapping tools as it eliminates solutions using engineering criteria.

In the case of Anglian Water, 16 different types of SuDS solutions were included as part of the assessment, along with the costs for each type of solution. This ensured that Anglian Water was shown the most cost-effective solution for each site as the preferred option. To ensure the SuDS options would be futureproofed from climate change and unpredictable weather, a number of climate change scenarios (including a 100 year plus climate change scenario) were run through the model.

As a rapid assessment tool, it is a much more cost effective than more traditional approaches, whereby areas previously had to be assessed individually by hand/boots on the ground. The tool also prioritises the opportunities for SuDS, which is extremely helpful to those using the tool. It also provides information on constraints associated with each site.

[This scan shows the different levels of surface water flood risk.]


The key benefit of using this tool for Anglian Water was that it was able to see all the opportunities for SuDS across its entire operating area, enhancing its ability to make decisions about the best opportunities for the implementation of SuDS and prioritising their investment.

[This scan shows the water quality from the water framework directive.]

FEATURE: FLOODING The scope of the SuDS StudioTM was demonstrated by providing the opportunity for Anglian Water to see not only where surface water could be removed but also how to maximise the benefits of SuDS at the same time, such as how to improve the water or air quality, reduce noise or heat island effects and improve biodiversity and amenity. Whilst these are tertiary requirements for SuDS, they are important aspects that add value to Anglian Water’s overall surface water strategy.


As the model can rapidly scan large areas it has meant that SuDS solutions could be fast-tracked for engineering and modelling; and


The tool ensured the solutions identified would be resilient to climate change.

Next steps


13.5 million feasible SuDS solutions were identified and mapped;


Over 5.5 million cost effective SuDS solutions were shortlisted;

The SuDS StudioTM outputs have given Anglian Water a much better understanding of the surface water removal potential for its entire region. This will support it with its long-term strategy planning, and look at the opportunities for mitigating the future demands of growth, climate change and urban growth together with reducing flood risk, energy use and improving water quality.


Analysis was undertaken of SuDS opportunities across different catchment types across Anglian Water’s entire operating region;

The data from the SuDS StudioTM project is now being incorporated and used by their scheme delivery teams to look for surface water removal opportunities for a number of new projects.

The SuDS StudioTM project produced the following results for the water company:

Anglian Water sees that an essential and hugely important part of its plans is to work closely with their other flood risk partners, including lead local flood authorities and district councils. Consequently, Anglian Water will be sharing the opportunities highlighted by SuDS StudioTM with these partners to enable the delivery of partnership funded opportunities. A key part of its future plans is also the involvement of its customers. Implementing SuDS will be a sea-change from more traditional engineering solutions, and it is a journey that they want their customers to understand and be involved with.

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What is the greatest cover depth over a pipe or most efficient bedding design for an installation? How do I air test a pipeline? And what’s the optimal size of manhole for a given size of pipe? The CPSA Guide has the answers to all these questions and more. Updated for the latest industry specifications, it’s an invaluable resource for anyone looking to design and build efficient drainage and SuDS systems. And it’s absolutely free. Download your copy today at




Education event around a planter at schools in Fellgate, North East England. SuDS bring additional benefits for education and an opportunity to reach out to the wider community and to proactively seek to engage people

In recent years, many have advocated that SuDS bring far wider benefits than piped systems. Yet until recently, barriers including ownership, adoption and long term maintenance have made it slow and difficult for water companies to truly engage, invest and deliver SuDS. However, momentum is growing within the Water Industry to tackle these challenges. Key elements of SuDS success are implementation as part of green/blue/grey approach, building partnerships and engaging with stakeholders and the community through the wider benefits of SuDS.

Key elements of SuDS success Since privatisation, the water industry has invested heavily in grey infrastructure and end of pipe solutions. Extra sewer capacity and storage are often the default solutions for flooding and managing water quality impacts from combined sewer overflows. Yet these problems remain, as standards and levels of acceptability change, along with new challenges emerging. Assessing and where necessary, addressing frequently spilling overflows looms on the horizon. There has been a gradual erosion of capacity in our networks and we are seeing Dry Weather Flow compliance issues at downstream works. With the need to create resilient infrastructure for a changing world we are facing ‘present day challenges’.


To deal with these issues, grey infrastructure solutions should no longer be our first choice, with SuDS seen as an alternative, it should be the premier option. To achieve this, we must consider a wide range of measures, engage multi-disciplinary teams and overcome industry scepticism to SuDS.

Putting SuDS first for managing stormwater The good news is, the industry wants more sustainable solutions. For example, in the north east, MWH is working with Northumbrian Water and Local Authorities on a wide range of projects using sustainable drainage as the norm to manage surface water for flooding and water quality. Success is often where SuDS is the first option as part of a green/blue/grey approach.

Building positive working relationships Good relationships with other risk management authorities and stakeholders is central. Indeed, DEFRA’s surface water management guidance encourages different organisations to “work

together and develop a shared understanding of the most suitable solutions to surface water flooding problems”. In practice, this means building strong partnerships between flood risk authorities and finding solutions that provide better outcomes for all stakeholders by:1. Working towards a common outcome rather than an isolated solution by sharing information, agreeing common standards and specifications and developing a holistic solution that satisfies (or exceeds) all organisations’ needs. 2. Sharing responsibility for the life cycle by sharing costs for data collection, design and construction, combining different funding streams, applying the strengths and regulatory powers of individual organisations to overcome red tape and agreeing up front the most appropriate organisation for adoption and whole life maintenance. 3. Engaging with customers and the community jointly by providing regular and appropriate information using the right media, addressing concerns and actively involving the community.

FEATURE: FLOODING Building long term relationships between ‘flood risk management authorities’ and other stakeholder organisations is fundamental to projects being supported.

meadows and extending an existing wooded area. Further educational benefits included an outdoor classroom space, education sessions and a tree planting event.

Strategic level studies such as Integrated or Sustainable Drainage strategies and flood risk management help identify common organisational drivers and establish crossorganisation process.

The result of working together was a higher level of flood protection for the community than possible in individual stakeholder projects, plus creating wider benefits. This successful approach has provided the blue print for other schemes in the North East leading to a growing portfolio of SuDS to manage surface water.

Using the added value opportunities to drive the project - customer focus Like any intervention, SuDS present short-term disruption during construction and potentially significant change to customer environments during operation.

Detention basin at Fellgate Primary School during heavy rainfall of winter 2015/16 SuDS measures including swales and detention basins provide economic solutions to reduce the risk of flooding to properties, typically up to 1 in 100 year event, and provide amenity and biodiversity benefits.

Good SuDS deliver attractive, pleasant, useful and living urban environments and can offer additional benefits such as water quality, biodiversity and wellbeing. These benefits offer opportunities to connect with the wider community and proactively seek to engage people to ■■

Change negativity or ambivalence into positive support for the project and organisations


Manage expectations for construction and finished features which may take time to mature

Bringing SuDS closer to home


Change attitudes to the environment and stormwater management

SuDS schemes focused on flooding typically use larger measures such as swales and bunds to intercept overland flow routes and carry surface water to safe management such as detention basins.

Considering early in the planning the stage, the potential multiple benefits and opportunities for community engagement, also helps deliver successful SuDS.

On the ground and making the change Fellgate estate in Jarrow, Tyne and Wear has a history of flooding and suffered extensive property flooding in 2012 following heavy rainfall, affecting 175 properties. Northumbrian Water and the local authority South Tyneside Council share responsibility for surface water management and recognised the value of working together to tackle flooding. The new solution, designed by MWH and constructed by ESH, comprised conventional sewer network enhancements and sustainable measures including swales, bunds and detention basins to manage surface water up to 1 in 100 year storms.

However, SuDS are particularly well suited to addressing the ‘everyday’ rainfall that can lead to frequently spilling overflows and water quality problems. Designing smaller SuDS closer to source which cope with smaller storms and still enable flows to enter the existing system for larger events provides an alternative approach. In Sunderland, Northumbrian Water are investing in a project designed and constructed by EshMWH to reduce sewer network discharges to the environment. SuDS were their first choice but are being used in conjunction with conventional approaches where appropriate – endorsing the green/blue/grey approach. This time, SuDS are being implemented within built up areas to tackle the water quality issue – by infiltrating and slowing the flow: ■■

Working together allowed the organisations to share funding, jointly procure design and construction services and share responsibility for ownership and maintenance. SuDS provided the opportunity to enhance biodiversity including ponds within two primary schools, wildflower


Source control measures such as planters and raingardens intercepting rain water pipes to reduce load on the combined sewer network Regional measures to store surface water before return to the combined sewer network such as intercepting highway drainage and attenuating in geocellular storage


Conventional drainage to remove surface water

The project truly embraces the concept of water as an asset, not a waste product and using water to revitalise green spaces. Roker Public Park, two schools and several public open spaces are benefitting from water features, planting and landscaping in return for space to store water. The project team are working collaboratively with local authorities and schools to design the landscaping schemes and using the opportunity to engage with the local community. Visualisation of a bioretention basin in Sunderland, North East England. SuDS measures make us of available space within dense residential areas to attenuate surface water, in this case, an unloved park. Surface water from local highway and roof drainage is channelled into an infiltration system formed by below ground geocellular storage and a swale on the surface, sized for 1 in 1 month storage.

What does the future hold? As the water industry moves to address the looming challenge of frequently spilling overflows, flooding, creating capacity for development and having a more resilient network, the implementation of SuDS at the local level, in and amongst our communities will be key. Strong partnerships and community engagement provide the components of success to manage our future challenges and risks. Authors: Dr Chris McLarnon is the Technical Delivery Manager for Esh-MWH serving Northumbrian Water. Prof Chris Digman is Technical Director for MWH and visiting Professor at the University of Sheffield.




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HOW CAN WE MAKE SUDS WORK? Is there anyone who thinks that we shouldn’t be putting in Sustainable Drainage (SuDS) when we have new commercial or residential development? to the sewer system; adoption and allocation of maintenance responsibilities for SuDS; new standards to optimise the opportunity to achieve amenity, biodiversity and water quality benefits as well as flood risk reduction; a Government review of the barriers to retrofitting SuDS in existing developments. The Big SuDS Survey was carried out across a broad spectrum of stakeholders.

Dr David Smoker

ACO Technologies, Chair of the ICE SuDS Task Group The benefits of SuDS, in controlling the volume and rate of surface water run-off, have been well demonstrated in the mitigation of downstream flooding and the impact on water company assets, such as storm drains and combined systems. Additional social benefits of increased biodiversity and amenity can also be achieved in many cases. The recent (February 2017) Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM) report ‘A Place for SuDS?’1 reported that “Worryingly the Committee on Climate Change found that just 15 per cent of planning applications in areas of flood risk contained the phrase ‘sustainable drainage’ in 2015”. So the more relevant question should be “why aren’t SuDS being implemented in all new developments and redevelopments and what can be done about it?”.

What stops SuDS implementation? ‘A Place for SuDS’ was informed by The Big SuDS Survey carried out by CIWEM in 2016 that identified the main reasons for the non-implementation of SuDS. The report recommended “… several policy changes to enable wider SuDS implementation, affordably and quickly”, covering discharge of surface water


‘How can we make SuDS work?’ was a more recent survey undertaken by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) SuDS Task Group and targeted SuDS practitioners and sought to tease out not only the barriers to SuDS but what resources and sources of information are currently used and what would assist practitioners in overcoming the barriers. Over 400 SuDS professionals responded with nearly all (99%) reporting that they face multiple barriers. The Task Group is continuing to analyse the responses to develop a range of outputs to support the SuDS practitioner in overcoming the barriers to SuDS implementation.

Ownership and Adoption The survey identified that the highest concerns are, unsurprisingly, ownership and securing long term adoption of SuDS. In the CIWEM report, 40% of responders thought that local authorities should be responsible for adopting SuDS, but 28% thought that the sewerage undertaker should be the adopter (management companies, residents associations, community trusts and ‘others’ made up the balance). The ICE survey respondents were not asked specifically which body should own or adopt SuDS but, in respondents’ comments, there were several references to Schedule 3 of the Floods and Water Management Act, which would have defined a pathway for adoption and maintenance of SuDS in England (see box ‘Regional Differences’). In the absence of a defined pathway for adoption, there is some evidence that this, together with the non-statutory nature of the SuDS standards, is used as a reason by developers for not including SuDS in planning applications. In some respects this is understandable. Respondents pointed to a lack of a consistent approach between different Lead Local Flood

Authorities (LLFAs) and different local planners, both in regard to the acceptable surface water management design and the adoption of SuDS. Sewerage undertakings took the occasional jab as well – as statutory consultees where the discharge is to a water company owned asset, there were examples where the water company has no objection to the site drainage plan but will not adopt any of the offline SuDS elements, mainly on the grounds that they are not included in Sewers for Adoption (yet). There was also some debate about whether SuDS should still be considered as land drains or whether a change in legislation is required regarding the definition of a sewer – “Some water companies allow adoption while others hide behind this legal restriction”. There were, however, good news stories of water companies and SUDS, for example, working with the local Highway and the developer when a development would have exacerbated the flooding from an already overstretched surface water sewer. The Welsh Water RainScape initiative also received very favourable comments for the multi-agency approach to SuDS.

Site Constraints Responders in ‘A Place for SuDS’ identified site constraints as the most commonly cited reasons for not implementing SuDS in planning applications. The ICE survey broke the site constraints down in more detail. From the responses, ‘development density/ land take’ and ‘permeability issues’ were identified as the biggest site constraint barriers. In examples given of where barriers had been successfully overcome, more understanding of the surface water management (including a view of the blue-green pathways) at the masterplan/outline planning stage had shown most benefit. It was reported that through earlier engagement, space constraints can be minimised by utilising topographical features which become part of the landscaping design. By contrast, where SuDS were only considered after the general site layout had been decided, there were real problems in redesigning to incorporate the space for SuDS. One comment was particularly direct: “Drainage has massively changed with SuDS due to the fact you can’t design it after the site design as SuDS work with the site not just go underneath them anymore!“.


Support material In terms of resources used by practitioners CIRIA C737, ‘The ‘SuDS manual’2, was the reference resource for over 2/3 of the respondents (rising to nearly 90% of those who considered themselves ‘Expert’) and it scored highest of any resource in all four categories analysed (Ease of Access, Quality of Information, Up to date Information and Sufficient Information). However, SuDS professionals are also reporting difficulties in finding examples of best practice and other relevant information. Over half say that there are not enough UK examples of best practice, while nearly half stated that information is too disparate and difficult to find – the former was more felt among less experienced practitioners and the latter more strongly felt by experienced practitioners. Consequently, the majority of survey respondents are seeking more support material to help them, case studies of good practice and a route map that signposts the most current, available documentation. The work of the ICE SuDS Task Group over the next few months will be to take the information provided by the survey respondents and develop a ‘route map’ of the SuDS process (including retrofit) from conceptual design to operation and maintenance and link to the most current versions of documentation and advice. Survey respondents have also indicated a willingness to share project information that could lead to a series of case studies – not only where ‘best practice SuDS’ have been successfully implemented (there are already a number of these particularly on the susdrain website3), but also where things could have been better ‘if only…’ It is hoped that the lessons learnt from what can be achieved even on less than ideal sites will give SuDS professionals the support needed to ‘make SuDS work’.

References 1. Downloadable at suds/ 2. publications/SuDS_manual_C753.aspx 3.

[Buckshaw Village in Chorley, Lancashire, was one of the first SUDS schemes one to be fully adopted by UK Authority.]

CASE STUDY: Regional Differences Schedule 3 of the Floods and Water Management Act (2010) would have made SuDS mandatory in all except the smallest developments and seen the establishment of SuDS Approval Bodies which would have been able to approve SuDS designs and, importantly, adopt and maintain them after construction. The Government decided not to implement the law on SuDS, and decided instead to rely on the National Planning Policy Framework updated in April 2015 to drive take up of SuDS in England. Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water will adopt some elements of SuDS systems but is reported as reluctant to adopt full SuDS systems, although it is implementing retrofit schemes under the £80m RainScape project. The Welsh Government is consulting on the implementation of Schedule 3, with standards for quality, quantity, amenity and biodiversity and the route to adoption. In Scotland, SEPA is the statutory agency responsible for protecting the water environment, under the Water Environment Water Services (WEWS) Act and requires the use of ‘effective, appropriate’ SuDS features in new developments.

For SuDS constructed outside the boundaries or curtilage of a private property, SEPA’s preference is for them to be adopted by Scottish Water, the local authority or other public body. SuDS need to be designed to Scottish Water’s specifications as set out in their manual “Sewers for Scotland 3rd Edition”. In addition, the law makes the use of SuDS obligatory when dealing with surface water drainage from all new developments. Northern Ireland has largely followed the English route, except that The Water and Sewerage Services Act (2016) extends the powers of NI Water to adopt SuDS (as they define them) and to require construction of SuDS, with the latter supported by introducing restrictions on the right to connect new surface water sewers to the public network.



Pollution is currently a hot topic in the water industry and after the courts issued a record fine of over £20 million in March this year, it’s a topic set to get a lot hotter. Dean Blackbourn, Technical Support Advisor, Northumbrian Water tells us how it has been on the agenda for some time at the utility company. There are three main drivers at Northumbrian Water that are pushing a huge focus on this area within the company. These are; ■■

The company’s current ranking against the rest of the industry


The risk of fines and prosecution


Our commitment to the environment as an ethical company

A ranking of 8th in industry showed that the company’s reactive approach to pollution wasn’t enough and more would need to be done. So, in early 2016 we began to look at how we could alter this approach – the answer was in fact quite simple, do more. However, we needed to be sure that our approach would be effective and that efforts, time and resource would not be spent in vain.


In order to do this staff were asked for their opinions on where we should be targeting our efforts, this is known as the LITE method (Leading Improvement Through Employees) and has been tried and tested within NW across various areas. During a number of workshops staff from operational crews to senior management shared their views on “pollution” and how we could improve as a company. Everyone had an equal voice and this means these workshops generated lots of discussion and loads of ideas. While doing this we also carried out a detailed analysis of every category 4 to 1 pollution incident attributed to the company during the previous 18 months. The category 3 to 1’s (category 3’s being a basic incident with minimal impact, 2’s and 1’s are the more major incidents) gave a clear indication of what had gone wrong, while the category 4’s (category 4’s been non-events or no impact incidents) gave us an idea of emerging issues as well as some simple improvements that would make us more efficient and enable us to focus more on areas of concern.

One of the key themes during these two exercises were manholes near to watercourses, that discharge as a result of blockages within the network. As well as being a key concern for operational staff, analysis showed that these accounted for nearly one third of all pollution incidents with NW. Despite being an industry leader in sewer level monitoring and also leading the way with innovative schemes such as Water Rangers, NW still struggle to identify these issues and incidents can often run for days or weeks without been identified, meaning a minor issue can soon escalate to a major incident. This made manholes near watercourse a key area to target for improvement. We began by using the data we had within the company to create a model of those locations believed to be at highest risk of discharging to a watercourse. This model generated 100’s of target locations across the NW operating area and each of these locations would need to be validated by our operational staff. This stage of the project involved staff from our technical teams physically checking each of the manholes

FEATURE: POLLUTION against the target criteria. Over 300 visits were carried out during this stage of the project and confirmed 98 of the locations were at high risk of causing a pollution incident if they were to discharge. During this stage, our technical teams also collated site information on each of these locations which would be used at later stages of the project. Our technical teams also identified various issues while carrying out the validation visits. These included some more typical issues like defective manhole covers and some more serious operational issues such as trees and branches caught against pipe bridges, that if not dealt with could have resulted in either flooding or a pollution incident themselves. The next stage of the project involved a detailed investigation of the network in each of these “high risk” locations, including a CCTV survey of the sewers. This stage of the project was delivered by our framework service providers (Esh - Kwikfow & Seymours Civil Engineering - JetAire), who delivered in excess of 14km of CCTV in a 10-week period. This was practically challenging due to complexity of the locations, often in wooded areas or farmland in very close proximity to watercourses. During this stage of the project we identified two blockages and a collapsed sewer which were at imminent risk of causing a discharge from the network.

These were dealt with swiftly to avoid the risk of a pollution incident. Towards the later stages of the project we also identified a live pollution incident in a small North Yorkshire village. A discharge from a pipe bridge had caused sewage to escape and it had effected around 30 meters of the receiving watercourse. Identifying the issue early meant that we were able to quickly mitigate the discharge and implement a temporary repair almost immediately. A permanent repair was then carried out the next day. This resulted in a category three pollution incident, however due to its location it would be unlikely that the incident would have been identified for some time and this could have easily escalated to a more serious pollution incident. In addition to this the site investigations also identified, 2.2km of tree roots that required removing from the network and 3.3km of sewer cleaning that was needed. It also showed that 2.5km of the network surveyed was effected by some sort of structural defect. Those more urgent issues were dealt with immediately and other issues were programmed in for planned repairs. Overall this small project avoided numerous pollution incidents and many more discharges, as well as limiting the effect of an actual pollution incident.

It was therefore seen as a key element in the company’s fight against pollution and substantial further investment was approved for 2017. This included a full-time project team and validation squad to validate the updated candidate list of “high risk locations”. Northumbrian Water hope that this approach along with several other key initiatives identified by analysis and the LITE workshops, will see significant improvement in coming years. This will hopefully aid in seeing the company climb the industry leader boards, avoid fines and prosecution and see improvement to waterbodies across the North East.

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ONE PLANET PROSPERITY Planet Earth provides everything we need for our health, well-being and prosperity. It’s an irreplaceable asset, but one which is under pressure. Under One Planet Prosperity, compliance with these legal discharge limits is non-negotiable. These limits must be met. SEPA will not allow businesses to continually fail to meet these compliance limits. Overall, compliance in Scotland has increased from 88% to 90.4%, but this is only the first step on the journey towards one planet prosperity. What we really need to do to create a vibrant economy in the 21st century is for businesses, not just get up to 100% compliance, but to go beyond compliance limits.

Terry A’Hearn

Chief Executive, Scottish Environment Protection Agency If everyone lived as we do in Scotland, we would need the resources of almost three planets to support ourselves. Globally, that figure is around 1.6 planets, and rising. Since we only have one planet, it will eventually become a constraint on our success. This will probably be much sooner than we think. So we must find new ways to prosper within its capacity to support us. This is a great time to be leading SEPA. The Scottish Parliament has given us a new Statutory Purpose. This tells us our job is to protect and improve the environment in ways which, as far as possible, also create health and well-being benefits and sustainable economic growth. This is a visionary purpose. Essentially, we need to help Scottish businesses understand that the only successful businesses in the future will be ones which use little water, energy and materials and create little waste. This is the essence of SEPA’s new regulatory strategy - One Planet Prosperity. It sets out a vision for making SEPA a regulator fit for the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century. Most EPAs were established primarily to reduce industrial pollution. This is still an important challenge. We need to continue to reduce emissions and discharges from industrial facilities. In the water sector, this means further reductions in discharges from wastewater treatment plants.


This is where SEPA needs to step up to the mark and help forward-thinking, responsible businesses turn environmental excellence into commercial advantages. In terms of water management, we are keen to help businesses reduce water usage through their supply-chains. Reducing water usage will also reduce the amount of wastewater heading to wastewater treatment plants. Furthermore, it will ultimately reduce the energy and materials used in constructing and operating wastewater treatment plants.

The first SGA, signed with Stirling-based insulation manufacture Superglass, includes six clear commitments from the company. This includes commitments to reduce water use and effluent, enhance innovation, reduce supply chain impacts, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, develop community engagement, and explore emerging opportunities to improve environmental and economic outcomes. All of this will be done with support and assistance from SEPA. SGAs offer businesses an opportunity to improve environmental performance and drive stronger commercial success. It represents a way for SEPA to partner with businesses to support innovation. So, whether you operate in the water sector or are a major user of water, SEPA is willing to partner with you to explore how we can reduce water, materials and energy usage levels. If we are to make this type of innovation systemic and the dominant way of managing natural resources, we need many new ways of operating. One is a new approach to environmental regulation. One Planet Prosperity spells out how SEPA will do this and I invite all regulated businesses in Scotland to contact us to take advantage of this new approach.

This is the type of innovation needed to drive a one planet economy. Regulators’ Influence Map Sustainable Growth Agreements (SGAs) are one of the new mechanisms we have at our disposal to support innovation. SGAs are voluntary formal agreements between SEPA and an organisation (or organisations) that focus on practical action to deliver environmental outcomes and help achieve One Planet Prosperity. Most SGAs will be signed with individual businesses, but some will also be with groups of businesses, trade bodies, local authorities, Non-Governmental Organisations and others. Through an SGA, SEPA can help organisations collaborate with experts, innovators and stakeholders on different approaches that could improve environmental performance and also help create commercial and social success. An SGA in no way adversely affects or prejudices our ability to act in our capacity as a regulator.

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A SEVERN TRENT PERSPECTIVE Severn Trent is one of the largest water companies in England and Wales providing water supply and waste water treatment services for over eight million customers. The company boundaries are defined by the fluvial catchments of Rivers Severn and Trent. On the waste water front, we collect around 30,000 litres of waste water a second, every day, via the longest sewer network outside London covering almost 94,000 kilometres of sewer. A distance equivalent to enough pipes, to go round the earth almost three and a half times. The Environment Agency work with us and other water companies to minimise the damage that pollution incidents cause to the environment and the communities we serve. Pollution incidents are usually caused by blockages. They lead to the release of harmful substances into air, land or water. Some can cause significant harm to the environment. All incidents are categorised based on their impact. A Category One incident has a serious, extensive or persistent impact on the environment, people or property and may for example result in a large number of fish deaths. Category Two incidents have a lesser yet significant impact and Category Three incidents have a minor or minimal impact on the environment, people and/or property with only a limited or localised effect on water quality. At Severn Trent we are committed to protecting our local environment and proud to be a frontier company for environmental performance. Our journey on pollution prevention in AMP6, started with a wider focus and emphasis on the environment in our business plan for PR14. In our plan we shared our 45 performance commitments for our customers, the regulator and the environment. An independent review by Blueprint for the Water indicates that our set of performance commitments is the best in the sector in terms of providing environmental coverage and protection.

In 15/16, we achieved: ■■

80% reduction in serious pollution incidents, and


21% reduction in minor pollution incidents.


We were the only company to get 4 star ranking from the EA twice over the last three years.

As agreed with our customers, this improved performance on pollutions resulted in us gaining a financial reward as we significantly outperformed our Business Plan targets. In the summer this year, we’ll be publishing more about our performance in 2016/17. We are cognizant that this journey to continually reduce pollutions will get tougher and challenging and it is imperative that there is further improvement in predictive capability on identification of issues that lead to pollutions, clubbed with effective response. This is especially important when dealing with serious pollutions, as given the limited number of incidents it is difficult to establish causal patterns to build proactive control measures. A clubbing of information from all companies on serious pollutions would benefit all Water and Sewerage Companies in building knowledge and robust improvement measures for serious pollutions.

Our pollutions strategy has led to a much improved performance in this area. Our strategy concentrates on: ■■

Long term asset health – focus on core maintenance of assets ensuring that they are in stable and serviceable condition.


Step change in operational performance: work in catchments, better use of data, identified hot spots for proactive investment and engagement.


Targeted catchment solutions – targeted interventions on specific catchments based on root cause data analysis focussed on dealing with the problem at source.


Training of all relevant staff on pollution incident management and reporting.


Engagement with our local communities and businesses to educate on how they can help reduce pollutions by ensuring there are no misconnections on their property and they are not disposing inappropriate items that can cause blockages down the sewer.


Root cause assessment to target behaviours and investment.


Root cause analysis for every pollution incident.


3050 signs fitted on our sites to improve self-reporting.


Restructured to one contract supplier and two hour response times for pollutions.


Technology focus – Use of monitoring programmes linked with intelligent analytic platforms identifying issues that could lead to a pollution incident.

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PARTNERSHIP WORKING TO STIMULATE INNOVATION On 21st February, the South West Area were welcomed to the Environment Agency’s (EA) Bristol head office for a series of fascinating presentations from, not just the EA, but also South West Water, Wessex Water, the University of Exeter, University of Bath and WRc. Interestingly Paul Hickey, now Deputy Director Water Resources, noted in his introduction that this was the first event hosted by the EA, but hopefully there would be more to come. EA recognises the need to nurture the next generation as the current skills base and age profile is a concern, so expect a stronger EA link with the Institute of Water going forward. Jeremy Bailey of the EA outlined the context of the environmental outcomes in AMP6 amounting to around £3billion including 46 bathing water improvements to be completed by 2020. Future risks to the water environment he saw coming from climate change, population growth and agricultural land use changes – post Brexit.

England’s water environment


Paul Hickey started his talk with the Agency’s priorities for the current AMP, i.e. enhancing the environment; improving resilience – including water resources; sustaining good performance, working in partnership and embracing innovation. However for this Periodic Review he expected softer solutions, delivered through partnerships and new ways of working, rather than just building new hard ‘stuff’. He touched on the current status of England’s water environment and the reasons we’re not achieving good status under the WFD.

SOUTHWESTAREANEWS The key challenges are: ■■

Sewerage and CSOs and the poor knowledge of their operation and performance.


Eutrophication – main cause of failures, so need for nutrient stewardship, managing phosphorous and resource recovery.


Chemicals – widespread failures and better monitoring likely to identify more issues - many linked to domestic uses. And their impact could be magnified by climate change.

To address these issues will require innovative solutions. Paul encompassed that as: setting shared outcomes; seeking joint understandings; partnership working and local leadership and sharing and building in best practice. Ruth Barden of Wessex Water and Keith Davis of the EA set out one example of such working together to manage phosphorous (P) differently. Wastewater discharges are the primary source of failures. And with over 650 WWTWs across England there’s still much to be done. So the EA and Wessex are looking at how P could be managed differently, both within the catchment and with new low energy/low carbon treatment technologies. Key is innovation in the regulatory approach from EA to reduce both the regulatory burden and carbon. With Wessex and academics they’ve set up the Bristol Avon catchment permitting trial. This covers 66 WWTWs with the aim of seeking the greatest length of river improvement. Results so far indicate expenditure of £20M adopting a conventional treatment approach at 24 sites in the catchment could be avoided. The Agency has set out an Operating Agreement for the catchment trial based on 1) an overall catchment target and 2) individual stretch targets.

Provided (1) is met then the EA would not take action on individual exceedences. The Agency hopes to extend this approach, albeit it will not be applicable for all catchments - e.g. the Hampshire Avon.

The EA is now looking at its chemical strategy for AMP7. Its priority is based on:

Moving further upstream in the wastewater process, Stephen Rosser from South West Water, provided an insight how innovation in messaging can help change behaviours and deliver environment benefits. He outlined how the ‘disposable culture’ had led to increased sewer misuse and the risk of uncontrolled discharges from the network. He suggested three quarters of blockages were caused by sewer misuse. That said, research suggests customers see water companies as a trusted source of information for all things drainage. However, Stephen suggested a failure is the absence of clear messaging, a gap filled by the retailers and manufacturers e.g. of wipes. Water companies need to reoccupy that space. SWW has therefore embarked on a collaborative project ‘Love your Loo’ with Marine Conservation Society and others. Its aim is raise awareness of the issues and explain the impact, so more about educating and encouraging. They are now quantifying the benefits using real time data. They’re finding a strong correlation between this activity and improved performance of the sewer network across six pilot areas. SWW is now taking this to the next stage, using the same approach for household fats oils and grease (FOG) disposal - the ‘Think Sink’ pilot in Exeter.


Aquatic life – so concern with e.g. metals


Drinking water quality - e.g. metaldehyde


Food chain – e.g. mercury and brominated flame retardants

Helen referred to pharmaceuticals as an upcoming risk. This raises the question whether that risk should be addressed through treatment or source control. The latter could include prescribing practice and restricting over the counter sales; increasing health professional and public awareness; and treating discharges from hospitals prior to the sewer. The risks are still largely unknown. Of over 6700 pharmaceuticals, we only have fragmented data on the environmental occurrence and fate of around 200. The EA, Wessex Water and the University of Bath have therefore embarked on a set of four EPSRC projects around ‘Holistic approaches to sustainable water supply’ – to identify emerging threats resulting from chemical pollution of urban water and the efficiency of natural treatment processes. This was an excellent afternoon event sponsored by the Environment Agency with a host of great speakers and case studies around innovation and partnership delivering benefits for the environment and in turn customers. Plus a great commitment from the EA to strengthen their relationship with the Institute of Water.

Helen Wakeham from the EA explored the risks to the environment from chemicals. She suggested that whilst the industry has a good 10 year database of treatment efficiencies there is no magic bullet to take all chemicals out of effluent.

A N N UA L C O N F E R E N C E 15 | 16 JUNE 2017





BUILDING PERSONAL RESILIENCE Personal resilience was the focus for the Eastern Area Team as they set about highlighting the advice and support available. An information session took place on the 4th April at Grafham Water. Led by John SunderlandWright, who introduced the topic of ‘being resilient’ and started with an assessment of each attendee’s strengths in this area. The session further looked at: ■■



Heat feedback


Increasing energy and building resilience through breathing techniques




Sleeping and eating better

It was not all sitting down though - a world record was attempted and they also looked at ways the heart reacts when in different situations and how you can take simple steps to improve your resiliency.

Overall the session was a success with feedback from members stating: “It was extremely good and very worth attending” and “It was very useful and will make me change a few things in my life”.

TRIP TO BRISTOL WATER JAN 2017 Following a WRAS conference where I met a number of water industry experts, including inspectors like myself from various water companies, I was introduced to Abi Baker, water regulations officer for Bristol Water. by Vicky Clipson

Water Regulation Inspector at Anglian Water We arranged to spend a day together to share our experiences and talk about the challenges we have faced when securing compliance with fittings regulations. I met Abi at the registered office for Bristol Water. The whole team work from the same office, which I thought must be convenient for communication, although it wouldn’t be practical for the size of the region that Anglian Water covers. I was introduced to everyone and given a tour of their database for recording inspection reports, RPZ valve certificates, notifications and a number of other regulatory functions, which was quite different from the Anglian Water systems.


I then shadowed Abi on an inspection of a pub where I was able to see first-hand how she explained the how the regulations applied to the customer’s business, and how she recorded information during the inspection. We found a number of infringements as well as some quite unique plumbing arrangements. We discussed these afterwards, thinking about how plumbing is often altered and extended over the years to the point that no one is sure exactly how the system works. Possibly the most challenging part of an inspection is trying to follow a pipe once it has gone underground, when the customer

has no idea where it comes back up, which is why our team is putting a lot of focus on raising awareness of Reg 5 notifications. Days like this are invaluable as they allow us to establish connections with the water regulations departments of other companies, so we can warn each other to be aware of non-compliant installations which have been fitted across the country, or discuss new plumbing arrangements which we can suggest for our customers to save them time and money.


INNOVATION AWARDS On February 15th 2017, the Northern Area Committee presented the Area Innovation Award during a very well received educational visit to Middlesbrough College’s STEM Centre. Dr Stuart Clough of APEM Ltd. reflects on a winning pitch to a real life Dragons’ Den and on why innovation is a hot topic in the water sector. Earlier this year I found myself pitching a new innovation to an audience of water industry experts in a real life version of the BBC’s Dragons’ Den. Although equal parts nerve-racking and exciting, it must have gone well as the audience picked our pitch as the winning idea.

Misconnections increasingly need to be identified in order to meet water quality standard but estimates by industry body UKWIR put the cost of using traditional methods to identify the roughly 130,000 UK homes with misconnections at about £190 million. So APEM developed a way to quickly and cost-effectively find misconnections across a whole town or city, by taking to the skies in our specialist survey aircraft and using ultra-high resolution aerial photography.

Our innovation uses ultra-high resolution aerial surveys to identify misconnected wastewater pipes. Significant investment by water utilities in water treatment has resulted in major improvements in water quality in many UK rivers, however misconnected water pipes on domestic and industrial properties still present a challenge in some areas. Pitching our innovation was part of the IOW’s annual Innovation Awards for the North area and was a highlight of a half-day conference dedicated to innovation and incident management in the water sector. It was an enjoyable and rewarding event, hosted at the impressive new Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths centre at Middlesbrough College. It included an insight into incident management at the college’s plant control centre as well as a presentation from Northumbrian Water about a large loss-of-supply incident.

Innovation In my opinion, The Institute of Water’s Innovation awards have never been more apt. Ever since privatisation over 25 years ago the water industry has been in a near constant state of change. Today, as we move into a more challenging regulatory regime and shift from CAPEX to TOTEX investment, innovation is more than ever the vital element driving the industry’s continued transformation. The innovation awards are a great way to bring innovative products and services not only to a wider audience, but also to an audience of decision makers.

We estimate that our technique offers water companies savings of about 95 per cent compared to ground-based surveys, as well as saving considerable time and reducing potential disturbance to customers.

APEM has entered the awards for the last four years and have been shortlisted in many of the regional competitions around the country. In 2015 we were delighted to reach the national final by winning the East region award. Now, with another shot at the national title this year, we are hoping it will be a case of second time lucky.

Our unique and innovative approach has now been adopted by several different water utilities and I am looking forward to representing the Northern region of the IOW at the national Innovation Awards finals in Manchester this June.

Our Innovative Idea - Saving time and money on misconnections

[Dr Stewart Clough, APEM receiving the Area Innovation Award form Area President, Richard Sears]

Misconnections are widespread in the UK and are a potentially costly challenge for water companies and local authorities. They happen when domestic wastewater pipes are connected to the wrong sewer network, often due to property modifications. This can lead to dirty water – such as from sinks and toilets - being routed to join with rainwater from roofs and flowing directly into watercourses.



INNOVATION AWARD DAY Congratulations to Southern Water on winning the South East Area Innovation Award 2017 for their use of innovative technology for detecting bats! Although the day culminated in the award for best innovation in the south east, the event was opened by our event hosts Thales UK. Although the day culminated in the award for best innovation in the south east, the event was opened by our event hosts Thales UK. Attendees were given a talk from Mike Oliver, (Digital Transformation Hub Thales UK) on digital transformation. We learned how ‘data is the new gold’ and how we need to embrace technology and even seek to profit from the data we have available to us. It was eye opening to see how product based industries were being forced to innovate and digitise or face being interrupted or put out of business by new agile smaller digital businesses. These new smaller Uber-style businesses have the power disrupt and shake these industries into the 21st Century. There are real benefits to digital transformation that the water industry needs to keep pace with or prepare to be disrupted sometime in the future. The next presentation by Daniel Tiramani (Thales UK Cyber & Consulting) on Digital Trust in Critical National Infrastructure, informed us of the potential risks of cyber-attacks and hacks in critical national infrastructure. Daniel described how Thales UK have worked with key partners to reduce or remove these risks. It was clear from this presentation that Critical National Infrastructure needs to continue to embrace digital transformations, and digital trust approaches implemented to safeguard these critical assets.

AGM 2017 A record number of members attended this year’s South East Area AGM which was held at Chessington World of Adventures.


To end the morning session of speakers, Phil Townend (Thales UK Secure Information and Communications Systems), explained how Thales UK had found an unlikely partner in a Formula 1 Team for helping to test and provide advice on the innovation being worked on. Partnership working, in whatever unlikely form it takes, can be an essential part of making sure innovation, research and development works for you.

Innovation Pitches David Campbell from APEM Ltd kicked off the innovation awards part of the day with a presentation on the new misconnections technology they have developed. After describing the misconnections issue for water companies and the water environment. They explained how their new misconnections technology was quick to use, scalable (i.e. could survey large areas as required), non-intrusive, and comparatively cheap when compared to other methods misconnections surveying. They ended by noting that this technology can make businesses dealing with misconnections more efficient and more cost effective. Tom Ryan from Southern Water (Principal Ecologist) entertained the audience with his presentation on bat detection technology. Where bats are found on water and wastewater supply sites, their presence can impact maintenance projects. Tom showed how Southern Water are using digital smart phone technology and thermal imaging technology to locate and identify bats more easily. The technology was clearly “Better for surveyors, better for bats and

The AGM comprised of a review of the past year, updates from committee members and a thank you from the committee to South East members for a great year of events, winning the Presidents Cup and the National Innovation Award. Whilst the proposed committee was elected we sadly had to say goodbye to Shelley Williams and Holly Banham who have both decided to stand down after a number of years. The South East Area would like to thank both of them for their hard work over the years and wish them well in the future.

[L2R: Prof Ian Williams (University of Southampton), Paul Holton (Southern Water & SE Area Treasurer), Tom Ryan (Southern Water), Phil Townend (Thales UK), David Campbell (APEM Ltd)]

better for customers” as it saves time, reduces costs, improves health and safety, reduces project risks, improves understanding about these illusive creatures, improves data analysis, improves accuracy of impact assessment data, and enables Southern Water to successfully meets its environmental obligations.

Circular Economy and Zero Waste Professor Ian Williams from the University of Southampton (Innovation and Enterprise) gave an excellent presentation on Circular Economy and Zero Waste. The world we are living in is changing and waste now has an economic value that must not go unnoticed in the UK. Whilst businesses across the world are understanding the value and making a profit from waste, the water industry has just started to look at the value of waste. Ian went through the work he has been doing through his university with Southern Water and found 21 areas of operation with potential for circular economy benefits. The future is less about paying to dispose of waste, but more about how we make a profit from our waste and use as an advantage; especially as the world’s resources become scarcer. We thanks our hosts for the day Thales UK, and those that presented.

The AGM concluded with the handing over of the chain of office for the South East Area Presidency from Kevin Brook, Sales Director for Primayer to Simon Cocks, Managing Director of Affinity Water. Simon, a previous Midlands Area President outlined his vision for the coming year and the committee are looking forward to working closely with him. The Area would like to thank Kevin for his time, guidance and involvement during his term as President. Following the AGM, members and their families were able to enjoy buffet lunch before enjoying the attractions in the park.


AGM & PRESIDENT’S DINNER The 62nd AGM of the Scottish Area was held on 18 February 2017 at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Glasgow.

Scientist at Scottish Water, will be involved in the progression of the Circular Economy Theme. Paul Maxwell concluded all of the AGM business within the one hour target for the 3rd year running and attendees then joined the festivities of the President’s Dinner.

Jim Panton was installed as the New President for 2017/18. Jim Panton thanked retiring Area president, Belinda Oldfield for her stewardship and hard work during the last year. Jim Panton also noted a vote of thanks to Craig Jackson, Kathy Ayres, Matthew Bower and Chris Boyle who retired from the Committee during 2016/17.

The President’s Dinner evening kicked off with a pre-dinner drinks reception before over 320 guests were seated in the beautiful function suite and served with an excellent three course dinner with BBC News Presenter Sally Magnusson was the guest host for the evening. Belinda Oldfield then gave the outgoing President’s welcome and address.

Jim welcomed Mark McEwen to the role of Area Vice President. Jim stated that Mark’s experience within the Water Industry will be a great help to him. He is pleased that Elise Cartmell, Chief

Our band Callanish did a fantastic job again, playing a mix of Ceilidh, old classics and new music to dance the night away.

CIRCULAR ECONOMY ROUNDTABLE EVENT On the 9th February, Belinda Oldfield, Scottish Area Past President, hosted a roundtable sponsored by Scottish Government’s - Scotland the Hydro Nation initiative. The topic of the roundtable was the role of the water sector in the circular economy of Scotland. The objectives of the roundtable were generally to start the conversation about water and the circular economy, building trust among the organisations present; to seek early actions that organisations can commit to in preparation for bigger circular economy events planned by the Institute of Water and Scottish Government Hydro Nation, in May and October 2017 respectively; and to create new relationships and innovative thinking that will enable the water sector to support a circular economy. The event was facilitated by Ann Bishop, Indepen Consulting.

The importance of a water and circular economy debate

The case for the circular economy is supported in Scotland and across the world. Roundtable attendees saw that a debate on the subject in the water sector would create a number

of opportunities to share understanding of the importance of the circular economy to Scottish Government and its economic strategy for Scotland. Also to understand the opportunities to integrate work across other sectors, such as health and pharmaceuticals. It was recognised as important to explore where circular economy thinking can link to the regulatory agenda to help make the right decisions for the good of society; shifting the focus towards integrated environmental management, using collaboration to go beyond compliance with legal requirements. Attendees talked about creating new ways of thinking about water company performance, its wider role and the language it uses to engage with customers around sustainable use of the water system; and about understanding how best to use new business models that might accelerate adoption of innovative technologies. Attendees highlighted opportunities to strengthen

[Jim Panton, Scottish Area President 2017/18 and Belinda Oldfield, Scottish Area Past President]

Scotland’s ability to share its knowledge across the world, building on the award received at the 2017 World Economic Forum which recognised it as one of the world’s top circular economy nations.

Commitment to Action

Attendees recognised two main themes in the debate: the need to collaborate and to experiment more. In summing up the debate, the attendees highlighted the following areas where they felt they could make progress, collaboratively, across the water sector: • change the nature of discussion with customers • bring SMEs to the table and better coordinate the efforts of the supply chain • focus on the rural community challenge • create more contact between the water and waste management sectors The Roundtable Report is available on the Institute of Water website. wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/ Roundtable-report-Circular-economy-and-thewater-sector-in-Scotland.pdf The collaboration and experimentation themes will be developed further at the Circular Economy Leader’s Summit in Edinburgh on 31 May.



CELEBRATING INNOVATION Hosted by Wynne Evans, aka Gio Compario of the Go Compare adverts, the 2017 Innovation Awards brought together industry professionals from across the Welsh Area to celebrate the most innovative work over the past 12 months. The Continuous Professional Development (CPD) award went to Thomoz Andrade, Catchment Scientist of Welsh Water’s Catchment Team. This award celebrates the benefits of CPD to all Institute members and encourages enhancement of professional competence to maximise career opportunities. Thomaz will now go forward to the National CPD Award finals in Manchester in June 2017. The other finalists were Charlotte Pointon, Regulatory Economist at Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water and Nick Copeland, Engineer with ARUP.

Ryan Bowen and the Catchment Team, Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water, picked up the award for their Deep Rooted Solutions: Growing Landscape Resilience project.

The Ideas Award is open to individuals, teams or organisations where innovation is in the early stages and now requires promotion to take it to the next stage. Glen Peek, Ben Cale & Gary Smith, Integrated Management Systems team at Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water won this award for their Interactive Works Operating Manual.

For the Technological Advances award, Katherine Gouws of ARUP and the Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water Capital Alliance picked up the prize for collaborative working on the Sharepoint site. Entries in this category include innovations that reflect the use of new technologies or methods of working.

The Environment Category celebrated innovations that deliver benefits for the environment such as carbon reduction, biodiversity, pollution avoidance and environmental conservation.

The Customer Services and People award went to Jenna Nicolle-Gaughan and the Welsh Water Capital Alliance for their Alliance People Business Plan that aims to encourage sharing of best

AGM 2017

The Engineering Solutions Award went to Arfon Jones-Hughes and Sophie Straiton, Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water, for their Mobile Filter Cartridge Frame. Arfon made a daily task safer and easier by designing a new way to change filter cartridges on site.

practice and knowledge, working closely together and rewarding colleagues. Finally, the Chairman’s Award went to the team or individual who may not have won an award in the main categories, but whose innovation has captured the imagination of the judges. This prize went to Ian Dickson of the North East Distribution team Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water for his Automatic Flushing Cap. We give our thanks to the organising committee; Fiona Jehu, Adrienne Walsh, Maureen Taylor, Katie Stephens, Lauren Lovegrove, Anna Riddick and Andrea Law. Special thanks though go to past Area President Steve Wilson who stepped in last minute for Alun Shurmer the current Area President who unfortunately had a family bereavement.


The Institute of Water Welsh Area held their AGM in March, chaired by Ceris VanDeVyver. The past year has been as busy as ever with events such as the Autumn Forum and the Innovation Awards which were so successful due to the hard work and dedication from the sub-committee members. We’re looking forward to the next twelve months as we plan to encourage more members to achieve professional registration, boost memberships, and build upon the strength of our events. We are extremely happy to have Alun Shurmer remain as President and we are delighted to welcome Linda Williams as Vice President. Ceris VanDeVyver has been elected with enthusiasm to continue as Chairperson for the next twelve months.


On 13th March Welsh Area visited the WRc (Water Research Centre) facilities in Swindon. WRc has a range of large scale facilities at its site, which are used to develop and test technologies. These are run and used by WRc for projects but can also be hired by the supply chain, academics and end users.

We were given an introduction to the history and current work of WRc, talks from specialist staff members, followed by a tour of the facilities with discussion on current projects / possibilities for future research and a networking lunch. Many thanks to WRc for an interesting and informative day!


BEAM ME UP SCOTTY! NI Area Annual Conference: Where can smart technology take the water industry? Dr Ben Tam, Senior Technology Consultant, Isle Utilities, opened the conference by reflecting on Bill Gates, the multi-billionaire philanthropist, who has spent hundreds of millions around the world to improve sanitation and enable universal access to sustainable sanitation services by supporting the development of radically new technologies, as well as markets for new sanitation products and services. Ben noted the value given to water supply in Singapore where wastewater is innovatively re-used and seen as a precious resource. A stark contrast to the general population of Northern Ireland who, because of the wet climate, may not truly appreciate the value of the water coming out of their taps.

He went on to reveal some pioneering new technology, flux membranes with graphene coatings, which use bio-mimicry as their function and structure mimic fish scales. Citing Anglian Water who use membranes at Hall Water Treatment Works to remove metaldehyde and other substances. Hall is a £40m plant, which produces 40ml/d in Lincolnshire.

Final remarks posed the question, ‘How do we make the water industry more attractive and lure, e.g. data scientists away from big companies such as Google?’ Ben concluded the need for a combination of education and technical apprenticeships to really grow innovation and new technology within water companies.

A NIGHT AT THE RACES The Northern Ireland Area organised a ‘Night at the Races’ on Friday the 3rd of February at Drumbo Park Stadium. Approximately 24 of us attended from various departments within NI Water, RPS and McAdam Design. The evening kicked off in the Crown Bar where we met for an aperitif before boarding the bus to Drumbo. Upon arrival, we were greeted and provided with a race night booklet which contained information on the races and dogs. We were seated at tables in the Grandstand Restaurant which afforded us a direct view of the race track. Everybody received 2 lucky dips for the Drumbo jackpots. We all enjoyed a lovely three course meal and each table was attended by a staff member who took our bets and paid out the winnings with some people faring better than others!

All in all it was a very entertaining evening which provided lots of laughs and excitement and gave us a chance to meet new and old faces from different areas of the business.



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Institute of Water Magazine - Summer 2017  

This is the Q2 2017 Edition of the Institute of Water Magazine containing original news and views from the Institute of Water and wider wate...

Institute of Water Magazine - Summer 2017  

This is the Q2 2017 Edition of the Institute of Water Magazine containing original news and views from the Institute of Water and wider wate...