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Jul 6, 2018
Category: Drought
Posted by: Kathryn

With this hot weather our water use goes up; this leaves less water available for the Chess.

May 3, 2018
Category: Abstraction
Posted by: Kathryn

With an ever-growing demand for drinking water and increasingly extreme weather events, how do we get the water we need without causing even more harm to our rivers?

May 2, 2018
Category: Drought
Posted by: Kathryn

Our riverfly monitors are back out in the centre of Chesham checking for life in the Chess now that flow has returned.

Mar 24, 2018
Category: HS2
Posted by: Kathryn

A public meeting with HS2 and the Environment Agency looked at the risks posed by tunnelling to the groundwater and rivers of the Chess and Misbourne Valleys.

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HS2 and The Chess

Mar 24, 2018

Category: HS2
Posted by: Kathryn

We hosted a public meeting with HS2 and the Environment Agency at Chesham Town Hall on the 20th March 2018.  We wanted to hear how HS2 and the EA intend to protect the water resource that sits in the chalk aquifer in the Misbourne and Chess Valleys.

HS2 are planning to build two tunnels through the chalk aquifer from the Colne Valley to the north of Amersham. This will mean that the tunnelling equipment will come into contact with the groundwater that sits in the chalk. This groundwater is currently used to supply the public's domestic water and the flows in our rare chalk rivers, the Misbourne and the Chess.The concern is that this tunnelling work could contaminate this water source or stop flows into our rivers.

HS2 gave a confident and professional presentation that went some way to reduce our concerns, but this work still needs to be approved and controlled by the Environment Agency. And it was acknowledged by all that it is not possible to eliminate all risks to the environment. The Government recognises the risk to the local water resource and in 2016 issued a financial indemnity to Affinity Water, our local water company, to cover the cost of any loss of this water resource which they depend on to supply our drinking water for an estimated amount of £77 million.

We have asked why this indemnity cannot be extended to other stakeholders that depend on this water; this includes everyone that takes pleasure and benefit from this water, including, walkers and ramblers, schools who use the rivers as part of their lessons, watercress producers, fishing clubs and environmental groups. We still wait to hear an answer on this issue.