The mission at Anglian Water – the largest water and wastewater company in the UK by geography – is to provide clean drinking water and bring social and environmental prosperity to the region it serves. Currently, there's a mix of chalk streams in Norfolk that are in poor condition, which is endangering species.

We’ve partnered with Anglian Water and Microsoft to test the world’s first ecological digital twin of a chalk stream for the River Stiffkey using the Microsoft Azure platform. The aim is to protect biodiversity, particularly since this is one of only about 300 chalk streams in the world. The solution brings data together from across several sources in a connected stack so the company can digitally model a spatial river catchment map to show cause and effect. AI can then be used to run simulations based on the data that flows through the model.

“We can now drive new solutions to improve river health that can benefit our operational colleagues who are managing assets day-to-day. We can do it more cheaply, more effectively, and with a smaller carbon footprint as well.”

Chris Gerrard Catchment and Biodiversity Manager, Anglian Water

The Anglian Water team now knows more about the River Stiffkey system and its history. With data all in one place, they can mitigate risks, protect river health and provide clean water to people in the region.

Note: This project was supported by the OFWAT Innovation Fund – Water Breakthrough Challenge.

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