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HerbEppel's picture

2Nov2010: Water security

Water security


Professor Peter Guthrie, Head, Centre for Sustainable Development, Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge


Michael Norton, Managing Director, Water and Power, Halcrow Group

Professor Tony Allan, Professor of Geography, King’s College London

Professor Richard Carter, Head of Technical Support, WaterAid

Dr Mark Zeitoun, Senior Lecturer and co-lead, Water Security Research Centre, University of East Anglia

Full list of speakers below

Morning, 2nd November 2010

Central London

Our Website | Book Online | Live Agenda

I am writing to invite you to attend the above seminar. Please note there is a charge for most delegates, although no one is excluded on the basis of ability to pay (see below).


This seminar will examine the water security of the UK and the UK food chain and bring out the next steps for improving water use efficiency, including consideration of the balance of new technology and greater conservation measures.

Discussion will focus on the potential challenges posed by water scarcity and the steps that the food, farming and manufacturing sectors can take to become more sustainable, in the context of global environmental change and increasing competition for scarce resources.

Following recent reports on food and sustainability which have highlighted the need for the food and drink sector to use water resources more efficiently, the agenda will look at the responses required to meet the challenge of water security alongside the drive to sustainably increase food production.

Planned sessions will also examine the impact of ‘virtual’, or embedded, water on the UK's water footprint, and look forward to the possible effects of global water scarcity on future trade and food availability, as well as:

Latest thinking on the political, economic and human implications of water scarcity;
The impact of importing water-intensive products on the UK’s water footprint;
Discussion of the balance between technological infrastructure, conservation and water resources governance as methods of improving water security;
Steps forward on reducing water usage across the food and drink industry through the Federation House Commitment (FHC); and
Progress towards meeting the target set in the Food Industry Sustainability Strategy (FISS) to reduce water use across the industry by 20% by 2020 compared to 2007.

The agenda for this seminar is copied below my signature, and a regularly updated version is available to view online. The seminar is organised on the basis of strict impartiality by the Westminster Food & Nutrition Forum and the Westminster Energy, Environment & Transport Forum.


We are delighted to be able to include in this seminar keynote addresses from:

Professor Tony Allan, Professor of Geography, King’s College London;
Professor Richard Carter, Head of Technical Support, WaterAid;
Professor Peter Guthrie, Head, Centre for Sustainable Development, Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge;
Michael Norton, Managing Director, Water and Power, Halcrow Group; and
Dr Mark Zeitoun, Senior Lecturer and co-lead, Water Security Research Centre, University of East Anglia.

At this early stage, other confirmed speakers include:

Jenny Bashford, Water Policy Adviser, National Farmers’ Union;
David Bellamy, Environment Policy Manager, Food and Drink Federation;
Dr Ashok K. Chapagain, Water Footprint Officer, WWF-UK;
Dr Mike Keil, Head of Climate Change Policy, Ofwat;
Jacob Tompkins, Managing Director, Waterwise; and
Andy Wales, Head of Sustainable Development, SABMiller.

Further senior participants are being approached.


This seminar will present an opportunity to engage with key policymakers and other interested parties. Places have been reserved for officials from the

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Drinking Water Inspectorate and Government Office for Science. Places have also been reserved for representatives from Atkins Ltd; BASF; British Sugar Group; Cargill; Enterprise; Environment Agency; Ginsters; King's College London; Local Energy; Oddono’s Gelati Italiani; Sodexo; STC research Foundation; University of Cambridge; University of East Anglia; University of Essex; Waitrose; WaterAid and Waterwise. Press passes have been issued to Agra Europe and New Civil Engineer.

Typically attendees at our seminars are a senior and informed group numbering around 100, including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government officials involved in this area of public policy, representatives of the food and farming industry, environment and engineering professionals, manufacturers, retailers, suppliers, local government, academia, interested and affected charities and consumer groups, together with representatives of the trade and national press.

Output and About Us

A key output of the seminar will be a transcript of the proceedings, sent out within a week of the event to all attendees and a wider group of Ministers and officials at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Department for International Development, Department of Energy and Climate Change and other government departments; other agencies affected by the issues; and Parliamentarians with a special interest in these areas. It will also be made available more widely. It will include transcripts of all speeches and questions and answers sessions from the day, along with access to PowerPoint presentations, speakers’ biographies, an attendee list, an agenda and sponsor information. It is made available subject to strict restrictions on public use, similar to those for Select Committee Uncorrected Evidence, and is intended to provide timely information for interested parties who are unable to attend on the day.

All delegates will receive free PDF copies and are invited to contribute to the content.

The Westminster Food & Nutrition Forum and the Westminster Energy, Environment & Transport Forum are strictly impartial and cross-party, and draw on the considerable support they receive from within Parliament and government, and amongst the wider stakeholder community. The Forums have no policy agenda of their own. Forum events are frequently the platform for major policy statements from senior Ministers, regulators and other officials, opposition speakers and senior opinion formers in industry and interest groups. Events regularly receive prominent coverage in the national and trade press.

Booking arrangements

To book places, please use our online booking form.

Once submitted, this will be taken as a confirmed booking and will be subject to our terms and conditions below.

Please pay in advance by credit card on 01344 864796. If advance credit card payment is not possible, please let me know and we may be able make other arrangements.

Options and charges are as follows:

Places at Water security (including refreshments and PDF copy of the transcripts) are £190 plus VAT (£223.25);
Concessionary rate places for small charities, unfunded individuals and those in similar circumstances are £80 plus VAT (£94). Please be sure to apply for this at the time of booking.

For those who cannot attend:

Copies of the briefing document, including full transcripts of all speeches and the questions and comments sessions and further articles from interested parties, will be available approximately 7 days after the event for £95 plus VAT (£111.63);
Concessionary rate: £50 plus VAT (£58.75).

If you find the charge for tickets a barrier to attending, please let me know and we will do our best to see you are not excluded. Please note terms and conditions below (including cancellation charges).

If you would prefer not to receive any more occasional communications from us, please contact, and we will remove you from our mailing list.

I do hope that you will be able to join us for what promises to be a most useful morning, and look forward to hearing from you soon.

Yours sincerely

Michael Ryan

Michael Ryan

Senior Producer, Westminster Food & Nutrition Forum

We’ve moved – please note our new details

4 Bracknell Beeches

Old Bracknell Lane West

Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 7BW

T: 01344 864796

F: 01344 420121