THE Environment Agency is encouraging East Lancashire businesses and residents to reduce their demand for water to help prevent future shortages.

Publishing its water resources strategy for England and Wales, the Environment Agency has set out measures to help protect water resources to 2050 and beyond.

This includes greater use of water meters for households, a review of the structure of the water industry and ways to reduce both domestic and business water consumption.

Tony Dean, the Environment Agency’s regional director, said: “Water is essential for life and vital to our economy.

“In the future climate change and population growth may mean that we won’t always have enough water to meet the needs of all the people, businesses and the environment.

“We must take this opportunity to plan for the future and think about how we can all use water more efficiently.”