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  • by Trevor Loveday

United Utilities turns on £300m pipeline for Cumbrian customers

United Utilities has started operating a new, £300m pipeline and treatment works, supplying 80,000 households and businesses in West Cumbria with a “more sustainable source of water” from its Thirlmere reservoir.


Construction of the 100km pipeline along with a new treatment works and two service reservoirs began in 2015 to address the needs of a growing population and environmental risks. And the water treatment works will generate 40% of the site’s power needs from an 80kW hydroelectric turbine its driven by the water flow in the pipeline at a point 30km from Thirlmere reservoir.


As well as the need to serve growing demand in West Cumbria, United Utilities said the project addressed biodiversity concerns arising from the previous water sources – Ennerdale Water and the River Ehen – which are host to protected species.


United Utilities said it expected that all customers scheduled to move onto Thirlmere water will be connected to the new supply by the end of autumn and will receive advance notification of the change.

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