Government response

Myth bust: Daily Mail claims about the need for standpipes

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

If there's a third dry winter, the likelihood of needing standpipes will increase slightly for 2013, but the chance of needing them is still very low.

The myth: The Daily Mail makes the inaccurate claim that the Secretary of State ‘added to the confusion over water restrictions’ following an interview with the BBC Inside Out Programme, and suggested that standpipes would be likely.

The truth: There is no confusion. We’ve had a record amount of rainfall in April, but we need to balance that against a backdrop of two very dry winters and pressure on the public water supply in some parts of the country. The fact is that if there’s a third dry winter, the likelihood of needing standpipes will increase slightly for 2013, but the chance of needing them is still very low.

The Environment Agency keeps the situation under constant review, and yesterday Caroline Spelman discussed the situation with them to ensure that no area is in a declared drought unless it needs to be.