Water and Housing Enquiry – Evidence Invited by 29 November

The Westminster Sustainable Business Forum (WSBF) is conducting an inquiry which will evaluate how water and housing policy is currently being implemented in England, and set out a strategic plan for delivering water-efficient homes at volume, that are resilient to flooding.

WSBF is currently taking evidence as part of this inquiry and invites written submissions to be sent to jim.clark@policyconnect.org.uk. The deadline for comment is 29 November.


This inquiry is being co-chaired by: Angela Smith MP, Labour Member of Parliament for Penistone and Stocksbridge and former Shadow Water Minister; and Baroness McIntosh of Pickering, Conservative Peer and former Chair of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee.


The enquiry is looking at both water efficiency and flood risk, giving consideration to the following questions:

  • If housebuilding, population growth, land use change and climate change proceed as projected, are we going to run out of water by 2050?
  • Are homes in England going to become increasingly at risk from flooding in the future? Can we quantify this as a call to action?
  • How do we build more water-efficient homes and communities (garden towns, housing estates) that will be resilient to climate change? What do you know has worked and failed previously? What has prevented the building of water-efficient flood-resilient homes in the past?
  • What are the practical solutions that can both improve water efficiency and mitigate flood risk? What are the new innovative solutions in the sector, and what micro-trials can be successfully operated at scale? What are the ‘game changers’ that will have a significant impact? What transferable practical lessons can we learn from international as well as national experience?
  • What are the three key risks for your organisation/sector from water management failures (drought/flooding)?
  • What are the three key mitigation measures required to reduce these risks to homes and communities? What action would make a difference in the next 12 months? Are there actions we need to take now to deliver medium/long term benefits?
  • How do we build the garden cities of the future? How do we retrofit existing housing estates to become more resilient?


 Proposed timeline for the study

  • September – December 2017 – Evidence gathering process and compilation of interim findings
  • November 2017 – Steering Group Meeting 2: review of initial evidence and interim findings
  • January – February 2018 – Report production
  • March 2018 – Steering Group Meeting 3: review of 1st draft
  • April 2018 – Report editing
  • April/May 2018 – Report publication in Parliament


Click here for more detail.