Water Ambition: Cam & Ely Ouse (CamEO) and Broadlands catchments (East Anglia)

The agri-food & drinks sector in the Anglian region contributes £3.4 billion per year to the UK’s GVA – the biggest contributors being poultry meat, wheat, fresh vegetables and pigs. It supports more than 150,000 jobs and provides 18% of the national farm-gate output. It’s one of the driest, water-stressed areas of the country.

Cam & Ely Ouse is home to more than 30 chalk streams, which are a unique and threatened habitat. Over 80% of the water bodies in this catchment fail to reach good ecological health, with agricultural pollution and ‘over-abstraction’ being significant contributors. 

The Broadlands includes the Broads National Park and is England’s largest wetland habitat, home to 25% of our rare and endangered species; and the Wensum. Over 90% of rivers in the area are failing to reach good ecological health, with diffuse agriculture pollution and over-abstraction a significant factor.

Water Ambition project

Coca-Cola has worked with WWF-UK and the Norfolk Rivers Trust since 2012 to support water sensitive farming practices in both catchments, which are key sourcing locations for its supply chains in terms of sugar beet. This has led to more than 280 million litres of water being replenished (equivalent to 112 Olympic size swimming pools). It has helped reduce agricultural pollution and improve water quality, and benefited farmers through adopting sustainable cost-saving practices.

The work will continue and upscale the existing exemplary water-friendly farming work, which is supported by Coca Cola and Tesco.

Contact Alex Adam at the Rivers Trust to find out more and get involved.

Find out about the other Water Ambition Collective Action Projects here.