Portsmouth Water | Case Study | Rezatec

Case Study

Protecting natural water sources for Portsmouth Water

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The Problem

Portsmouth Water approached Rezatec following a long-term observation of increased nitrate pollution and concern of potential contamination of raw water sources with FIOs, such as from manure heaps, in groundwater.

Understanding these to be most likely a direct result of agricultural activity, the company wanted to analyse the overland flow of these pollutants and try to predict where they might be entering the groundwater.

The Solution

Rezatec analysed agricultural land use and modelled the natural hydrology in the key water Source Protection Zones (SPZs), providing Portsmouth Water with landscape intelligence tailored to their objectives, predicting the likely overland flow of nitrates from agriculture and other sources.

From this analysis, they were able to see potential connections between nitrate spikes and a diverse mix of potential sources, which were found to include certain crop types, livestock, the use of fertilisers, and dung heaps.

The Outcome

Using the data to see where the highest levels of risk are, Portsmouth Water has the information necessary to inform catchment management decisions. This allows them to be strategic about where to put in place cost- effective mitigation practices for reducing nitrate pollution, such as enhanced soil testing and management, or encouraging farmers to plant trees and cover crops.

Crucially, Rezatec’s map-based platform provided visually striking analytics to enable catchment managers to work more effectively with farmers, equestrian businesses and other local land users. The risk map is easily understood by non-experts, putting Portsmouth Water in a stronger position to explain the problems and work together with landowners to find solutions.

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