The abstraction of water from surface waters or groundwater is currently controlled through the abstraction licensing system, under the Water Resources Act 1991 , as amended by the Water Act 2003.
The Government has proposed transferring the controls on abstraction into the environmental permitting regime, principally as a means of ‘better regulation’.
Planned changes to abstraction licensing legislation has the potential to improve the current system, but also has potential pitfalls.
The following bulletin provides a brief summary of a dissertation completed as part of an LLM degree, which was supported by Envireau Water. The dissertation examined the experience of similar changes in the past.