The chalk geology of the South Downs, and the thin ridge of lower greensand which outcrops to the north of the Downs provide two major aquifers in the Ouse and Adur catchment. These underground stores of water provide public water supplies to towns and cities like Lewes and Brighton & Hove and many rural communities.

Rain that falls across the catchment enters these aquifers by seeping through the soil and filtering through the chalk and porous rock, resurfacing via springs which feed our rivers with cool, clean fresh water. Clean and plentiful groundwater provides us with drinking water, it irrigates crops that feed us and provides the water we need in rivers to swim, fish and kayak. When groundwater is polluted or in short supply all of these benefits are threatened.

To find out more about the groundwater of the Adur & Ouse catchment and what we are doing to protect it visit our interactive map

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