Problem characterisation – East Hampshire

The Problem Characterisation stage of the DWMP uses the results from the Baseline Risk and Vulnerability Assessment (BRAVA) to explore the causes of risks and the primary drivers. A technical summary provides information on our approach to the problem characterisation.

Current risks in the East Hampshire Catchment

The graph below illustrates the combined results of the 2020 BRAVA assessment for all 7 wastewater systems in the East Hampshire river basin catchment. It shows how many wastewater systems have a risk under each of the 14 planning objectives. For example, for the risk of internal flooding, 4 wastewater systems are in band 0 (not significant), 2 are in band 1, none in band 2 (very significant) and 1 was ‘not flagged’ for inclusion (i.e. screened out at the risk based catchment screening stage of the DWMP).

Graph of BRAVA results for the East Hampshire RBC

The graph illustrates that storm overflows, nutrients and pollution are the main concerns in this river basin based on the BRAVA results for 2020. This is illustrated by the brown bars being the highest for planning objectives 5, 11 and 2.

The wastewater system with the highest number of planning objectives in band 2 (very significant) is Budds Farm. This system has 6 planning objectives in band 2.  Peel Common has 5 planning objectives in band 2.  All other catchments have fewer overall numbers of risks.

The specific risks and the causes of risk for each of the wastewater systems are explained in the summary of the problem characterisation for each system.  These are available to download from the link next to the name of each system in the table below.

Future risks in the East Hampshire Catchment

The 2050 BRAVA results help us to identify the future challenges for drainage and wastewater management in the East Hampshire river basin catchment.  These are:

(a) Growth

There are several wastewater catchments where new homes, businesses, roads and other infrastructure is planned.  Local authorities across southern Hampshire have joined together as the Partnership for South Hampshire (PfSH) in a unique effort to map out the future of the region. The Partnership has a focus on four key areas of work, including housing.  The Councils are co-operating on issues such as nutrient mitigation and strategic flood risk assessment.

The BRAVA results show that additional homes and businesses may increase the risks of non-compliance with our Dry Weather Flow (DWF) permits from the Environment Agency in two of the 7 wastewater systems, unless measures are taken. They are Peel Common and Bishops Waltham. This means further investment will be needed in the future to increase the capacity of our treatment works to accommodate the additional flows from new homes and businesses.

The additional development may mean that our current permits for wastewater treatment quality might be exceeded by 2050 without further investment in two of the wastewater systems, Bishop’s Waltham and East Meon.  Peel Common is currently in band 2 for WTW compliance due to an incident in 2020 that disrupted the power supply for our ultraviolet (UV) treatment plant.  This has since been rectified and the resilience of the UV plant improved.

Our risk assessment for nutrient neutrality has indicated that new development in the East Hampshire catchment might put additional pressure on achieving favourable condition of the internationally designated habitats sites in the Solent. The local councils are working with Natural England and the Government to find suitable solutions to ensure that development is nutrient neutral. This risk may require additional future investment in our wastewater treatment processes.

A map of the East Hampshire catchment showing the estimated future growth in each wastewater system is shown below. The technical summary explains how we have considered population growth and urban creep in our DWMP.

Map of estimated growth in the East Hampshire RBC

(b) Climate change

Climate change will bring greater variability of our weather with warmer wetter winters and hotter drier summers. The impacts we will see will be more intense summer storms that exceed the capacity of the drainage and wastewater networks and cause localised flooding. Hence, the risk of flooding from sewer systems is increasing due to climate change. The technical summary explains how we have considered climate change in our DWMP.

We are working with partner organisations, such as Hampshire County Council, District Councils and the Environment Agency, who have also responsibilities for flooding and drainage to consider options and develop opportunities to find solutions that reduce the risks from flooding.

We will need to adapt our wastewater systems to operate in future climates.  There will be an increasing need to slow the flow entering our sewer networks so the systems can carry the water without flooding homes and businesses and/or without causing discharges from storm overflows. Preventing additional rainfall entering foul sewer networks, including combined sewer networks where possible, could delay the need to upgrade and enlarge the vast underground network of sewers.

Climate change is expected to have an impact on the risk of flooding in several wastewater systems, especially Budds Farm where there is already a very significant risk from rainfall related flooding. The risk assessment for Wickham indicates that the flooding risks will increase from band 1 to band 2 by 2050 unless measures are taken.

Peel Common, Budds Farm, Southwick and Wickham systems all have storm overflows that discharge during periods of heavy rainfall.  The risks from these discharges is currently very significant and climate change may increase the frequency of discharges, unless measures are taken.

The map below shows the potential impact of climate change, urban creep and growth on the risk of flooding in a 1 in 20 year storm for the wastewater systems.  We followed Water UK’s capacity assessment framework to apply a 20% uplift to rainfall forecasts to assess the potential increases in flood volumes shown on the map.  Urban creep was estimated using the approach developed by the UK Water Industry Research (UKWIR) report on Urban Creep in sewerage systems (2010).

The map highlights that we will need to adapt to climate change.  Adaptation will mean considering  long-term sustainable options, such as reducing the volume of rain water entering the sewer network. This approach may provide the capacity within the wastewater system to allow for future growth and therefore reduce both the need for significant increases in the capacity of the existing wastewater systems and reduce discharges from storm overflows.

Map of climate change impacts in East Hampshire RBC

Investment planning for our wastewater systems

We used the BRAVA results and our understanding of the causes of risks and drivers to propose an investment strategy for each of the wastewater systems. Find out more information on how we determined the investment strategies.  The strategies help us to target the wastewater systems that need further investment to reduce the potential risks to customers and the environment. We have produced a table that lists the proposed investment strategy for each catchment.

We used a risk based approach to identify the wastewater systems that we need to progress in this first round of DWMPs. For these systems we will develop an investment plan. Our technical summary sets out how we have selected the systems to take forward.

The table below lists the wastewater systems in the East Hampshire river basin catchment that we’re progressing further during this first round of the DWMPs into the investment planning stage.  We have included a catchment map and an explanation of the causes of risks for these systems (see links in the table below).

The maps and causes of risks for the remaining wastewater systems in East Hampshire will be published when available. 

System Ref Wastewater system Wastewater system map Information on causes of risks
BISH Bishops Waltham Not currently available Not currently available
BUDD Budds Farm Havant Budds Farm Map Budds Farm Causes of Risks
DROX Droxford Not currently available Not currently available
EMEO East Meon Not currently available Not currently available
PEEL Peel Common Peel Common Map Peel Common Causes of Risks
SWIC Southwick Not currently available Not currently available
WICK Wickham Not currently available Not currently available
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