Leakage

Ambitious regulatory and company targets mean leakage will be a key focus over the 2020-25 period and beyond. Find out what water firms are doing to tackle the problem.

Editor's picks

Water companies from across the UK as well as supply partners, NGOs and academic groups have been awarded funding for 11 projects from the Ofwat Innovation Fund to tackle shared problems faced by the sector. See the full list as well as the thoughts of Ofwat's John Russell.
News
An environmental group has threatened legal action against environment minister Rebecca Pow’s department for not dealing comprehensively with combined sewer overflows.
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Installing one million smart water meters each year could cut the UK's greenhouse gas emissions by 0.5 per cent over the next 15 years. The impact of smart water meters on reducing the UK’s carbon emissions has been calculated in a new report by Waterwise and Arqiva that suggests a nationwide rollout would save one billion litres of water daily.
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Featured

United Utilities has said it is on track for its lowest leakage rates ever in the first year of AMP7 and has more than halved its supply interruptions during the past year. In a trading update published ahead of its full year results to 31 March, the company also confirmed it has recorded no serious pollution incidents for a second year.
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Scottish Water’s decarbonisation strategy works back from the net-zero target of 2045 to establish what needs to be achieved and when – as well as who will pay. As part of our Countdown to COP series, chief executive Douglas Millican talks to Ruth Williams about taking a long-term view and how the company sought public backing for its plans.
Interviews
Anglian has set out how it will spend £630 million from 2021/22 across its region with a focus on leakage, strategic infrastructure projects and protecting waterways including chalk streams.
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Latest in Leakage

John Lillistone makes the case for using private communications networks to improve the efficiency and frequency of data collection from smart water meters, helping to realise their full potential.
Opinion
How can the sector promote trust, fairness and legitimacy at the same time as tackling the urgent transformations linked to the net-zero journey and technological advances? A panel including Ofwat’s Jonson Cox, Lord Deben, Northern Powergrid CEO Phil Jones and Michael Lewis of Eon, gave their view as part of the New Deal for Utilities debate
Market insight
Over the past few years inclusivity has been a rising challenge for the utilities sector, one which is increasingly becoming a focus with regulators, with Ofwat and Ofgem calling for better service for all customers.
Opinion
Anglian Water chief executive Peter Simpson tells Utility Week the company's customers have made it clear that cheaper bills are not the only priority when it comes to setting its business plan for the next five years.
News
Ofwat has asked water companies to cut leakage by 17 per cent by 2025 and UKWIR wants zero leaks by 2050. Can the Netherlands, with its 5 per cent rate of leakage, offer any pointers on how this can be achieved?
Interviews
If people can stop and think twice about smoking, why not stop and think about the amount of water they are using? With such high interest from the public about environment and climate, Colin Skellett says there has never been a better time to make people think more about water usage.
News
The latest addition to Anglian's innovation hub in Newmarket will have the ability to detect, locate and solve problems in the network. The company said the system takes AI a step forward from making observations to being able to make judgements and decisions based on its observations.
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The infrastructure across Northern Ireland is bursting at its seams according to the chairman of the publicly-owned company who pleaded for extra funding required for essential maintenance.
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Northumbrian Water chief executive, Heidi Mottram, talks to Utility Week about the success of the company’s tie-up with Anglian Water to create Innovate East - and how collaboration is key to breaking the mould.
Interviews
British Water’s chief executive Lila Thompson shares her experiences working in a male dominated sector that needs a PR makeover to get the public on board.
Interviews
If water companies aren’t currently meeting their leakage targets, it inevitably raises doubts over their ability to fulfill the ambitious goals of the next five years. This is the view expressed by the Consumer Council for Water in its annual report, in which it also chides firms for using the weather as a justification for supply interruptions.
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