Water supply

Yesterday I met senior managers from Thames Water to discuss the quality of service, bills and flooding matters.
Thames are keen for more people to convert voluntarily to water meters, Many users would benefit from lower bills, depending on their usage and house size.New smart meters also allow the water company to receive regular electronic updates on usage to assist them manage the total system better. It also helps them trace leaks, reducing waste. Most homes do not use water in the middle of the night, so if water is still being supplied it warrants investigation to see if there is a leak that needs fixing.
Thames have a plan for a large new reservoir near Abingdon. They think this will be needed, given the large rise in population London and the south east is experiencing. Regulators, government and the industry are still making up their minds about this project. In the meantime water companies are exploring other options, including mending leaks and installing meters.I will be following up this conversation with Ministers, to review the best way of meeting future water demand. As we saw in the first two years of this decade, if you have a prolonged period of dry weather the system finds it difficult to cope.

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3 Comments

  1. lojolondon
    Posted February 10, 2015 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    John, most of us believe that the flooding experienced over the last few years has nothing to do with “climate change”, something to do with building over green space, and a very lot indeed to do with the total failure of the Environment Agency to do anything about that.
    We know that the individual in charge of the EA has promoted his strategy of ‘preserving wildlife by not dredging’, which has been an abject failure. I hold the current government entirely responsible for not replacing that person and preferably pressing charges for dereliction of duty. The coalition has now had five years to sort this out, and have made absolutely no attempt (except for providing more money, to be wasted on ‘initiatives’, political marches, etc.).

  2. Dennis
    Posted February 10, 2015 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    Increase in population numbers needing more water! Who would have thought?

    Forget about dealing with population increases, just keep making more water and more houses and more imports and more power stations and more parking controls and more transport and more roads and more jobs etc., etc., etc.

    Lower bills with more use of meters? Not when the many have them as the water companies will raise prices to keep their income up.

  3. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted February 10, 2015 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    Because of the growing population, someone is bound to suggest in the near future the equivalent of housing being built on stilts over reservoirs and, roads built on pillars crossing them as a novel way of gaining more development space…and not as a mildly amusing comment.
    When water becomes in short supply in a country like England which especially this year has done nothing but rain then we should know the problem isn’t reservoirs, leaks and lack of meters.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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