WATER could be pumped 80 miles to Gainsborough from Birmingham to ease the shortage facing the region.
Severn Trent Water and Anglian Water are in talks about a plan to flow 30 million litres a day into the River Tame, which joins the Trent, and then on to Gainsborough, through water pipes.
The emergency trade-off would benefit 100,000 homes in the Anglian Water region which is currently under a hosepipe ban.
Severn Trent said it would not make a profit out of the trade and only charge Anglian Water the cost of transporting the supplies.
Strategy manager David Essex said technical discussions were under way. “We will soon be able to confirm if we are in a position to be able to help our neighbours while having enough to keep our own customers in supply,” he said.
Simon Love, head of drought response at Anglian Water, said: “We are exploring a number of options to help support the drought-hit region, including the movement of water across water company boundaries.”
“In the short term, though, it’s vital that everyone takes steps to save water in the home.”
“Large-scale support like this scheme could help, but even if we are able to make it work, it won’t mean we can cancel this summer’s hosepipe ban.”
The hosepipe ban started on Thursday 5th April for Anglian Water customers, including Gainsborough.
It was prompted by the driest 18 months in more than a century in the region.
David Essex added: “This project could be a sign of things to come, as water becomes scarcer and needs to be moved around the country.”