Water

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New chief executives have been unveiled at United Utilities and Electricity North West, following the retirement of Steve Mogford and Peter Emery respectively.
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Ofwat has named David Black as its permanent chief executive after a year in the position in an interim capacity. Black oversaw the PR19 price review, dubbed the toughest the sector has seen, and has been instrumental in tightening financial resilience of water companies.
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Industry experts have called for the prioritisation of work to better understand and remove surface water without it entering overburdened sewers as a key challenge of climate change resilience. The chief executive of Thames and Northumbrian Water agree that the sector needs to work harder, and collaborate further on managing surface water.
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Consumer research shows water companies are increasingly being seen as the primary culprits when it comes to river pollution, yet public awareness of the work they are doing to mitigate these impacts is actually dropping. Ruth Williams asks why the water sector has struggled to make its voice heard.
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Latest in Water

Thames Water has posted a 19.2 per cent increase in pre-tax profit to £134.2m for the six-month period ended 30 September 2013 compared with £112.6 million in the previous 6 months.
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Most utility companies have a social media strategy but few are making the most of video as a marketing and customer service tool, says Steve Hemsley.
Analysis
For AMP6, Ofwat is adopting a regulatory model based on outcomes rather than outputs, but have water companies aligned their contractor model to this new world? By Terry Povall.
News
“Over the next 18 months, the periodic review will dominate the water sector, and especially the share prices of the quoted water companies.”
Comment
There must have been sighs of relief at Millbank this week when the papers landed. “Ofgem orders local electricity companies to cut costs to consumer”; “Ofgem orders electricity providers to cut costs” – a welcome break from the usual “toothless watchdog” rhetoric, played out once again this week when Ofgem’s interim chief executive, Andrew Wright, was hauled up in front of the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee.
Comment
South West Water (SWW) has announced it will freeze all standard tariffs and standing charges until April 2015, as it posted a 7.6 per cent increase in profit before tax to £87.3 million.
News
United Utilities, the UK’s largest publicly traded water company, has pledged to discount customer bills in 2014-15 as it reported underlying operating profit up £29m to £343.2m for the six months ended 30 September 2013 (2012: £314.7m).
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Speaking ahead of the second reading of the Water Bill, due to take place this afternoon, Labour has called on the government to “strengthen the powers” of Ofwat, the industry regulator.
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