Water companies to present plans on cutting leakage

Water company efforts to reduce leakage will be scrutinised when the Consumer Council for Water (CCWater) meets in Liverpool on Tuesday (16 July).

Across the North of England, leaky pipes cost water companies an average of one and half bathtubs of water per property, per day according to Discover Water. It’s an issue that frustrates local residents and can reduce their own motivation for using water wisely. This meeting – which anyone can attend – will challenge representatives from United Utilities, Northumbrian Water and Yorkshire Water to show customers their plans for reducing leakage and protecting future water supplies.

United Utilities – which came under fire for its performance on leakage during last summer’s heatwave – has recently been challenged by industry regulator Ofwat to show more ambition in tackling water leakage, asking the company to commit to a 20 per cent reduction over the next five years, compared to the industry average of 15 per cent.

The company has promised to implement a number of measures in order to reduce waste, including employing more than 60 leak ‘detectives’, in addition to the use of smart technologies, satellite technology and specially-trained sniffer dogs.

Robert Light, CCWater Chair and Regional Chair for the Northern region, comments: “Leakage is a big concern for consumers, who are conscious of the need to use water wisely and want to see water companies doing their own bit to tackle water waste.”

“We welcome water companies’ commitment to reducing leakage and improving resilience across their networks. This meeting will provide an important opportunity for consumers to hear first-hand how companies plan to do this.”

Yorkshire Water also has ambitious plans to reduce the amount of water it loses across its network by 40% by 2025. The company is investing in trialing cutting-edge technology to help to identify and repair leaks more effectively, including a recent pilot scheme which utilises smart analytics, to provide real-time data. Northumbrian Water has recently teamed up with BT for a pilot scheme which will see smart sensors installed on pipes to detect leaks faster.

The watchdog will also look at the issue of transparency in the water sector during the meeting, which will start at 11.00am at the Brain Charity, Liverpool, L3 8LR. If you would like to attend or if you have any questions, please email Alison Townsend: alison.townsend@ccwater.org.uk

Categories: News, Northern