UK Groundwater Forum. From left to right Images Copyright Derek Ball BGS ©NERC 1999, Jude Cobbings BGS ©NERC 2003, Terry Marsh CEH ©1991, Emily Crane BGS ©NERC 2004
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Drought — how resilient are we?

13th - 14th June 2012

British Geological Survey Conference Centre, Keyworth, Nottinghamshire

Although recent rainfall has resulted in some improvement in river flows and reservoir levels, the previous 18 months of below average rainfall means groundwater levels remain amongst the lowest on record and the water resource situation in parts of the UK continues to look precarious. Parts of the UK remain officially in drought and water companies are applying for drought orders and encouraging consumers to conserve water.

With climate change modelling suggesting that there may be an increase in the frequency and severity of droughts in the future is this a sign of things to come and a reminder of how vulnerable our water resources are? It is timely then that the NERC Water Security Knowledge Exchange Programme (WSKEP), led by the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, has identified drought resilience as a key priority subject.

The UK Groundwater Forum’s annual conference was held in conjunction with the NERC WSKEP and will be followed by a workshop on ‘Improving drought prediction, communication and impact assessment’.


Drought — how resilient are we? (Wed 13th June)


Attendee List

Groundwater drought: risks and opportunities (pdf 0.5MB)
Trevor Bishop, Head of Water Resources, Environment Agency

What drought means for a water company (pdf 1.1MB)
Richard Bienfait, Managing Director, Veolia Water Central

The challenge of drought to the farming community (pdf 1.6MB)
James Dodds, UK Irrigation Association

How can we make our environment more resilient to drought? (pdf 3MB)
Phil Burston, RSPB

Spatio-temporal relationships between the surface and groundwater manifestations of drought (pdf 2.1MB)
Terry Marsh, Leader of National Hydrological Monitoring Programme, Centre for ecology and hydrology

Empirical evidence for hydrogeological controls on variations in the spatial and temporal extent of groundwater droughts in the UK (pdf 0.5MB)
John Bloomfield, Leader of Groundwater Systems, Analysis and Management, British Geological Survey

Drought and the environment - impacts and analyses (pdf 1.3MB)
Anna Wetherell, Natural England

Climate change in water resource planning (pdf 2MB)
Steven Wade, Group Manager, Water Management, HR Wallingford

Overview of current drought research and its relevance to the challenges we face (pdf 3.5MB)
Kevin Hiscock, Professor of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia

Conference sponsors:

Amec logo

WSKEP Workshop:

Improving drought prediction, communication and impact assessment (Thurs 14th June)

Attendee List

Participant Pack

The WSKEP workshop focused on identifying: how past and current NERC research and scientific outputs can support improved drought prediction, communication and impact assessment; what research is still needed to meet the future challenges faced by decision makers and those that may be affected by drought and; the priority actions we need to take to improve our resilience to drought.

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