Environment

Our business is intrinsically linked to the environment as we rely on it for our raw product, water. For this reason we do all we can to ensure there is a clean, resilient and sustainable supply available for current and future water customers whilst ensuring there is enough water available to support the needs of the environment too. Click 'Discover More' to hear from our Head of Environment, Emma Goddard.

People

Our people are dedicated to providing you with the best service possible, whether they’re out in the field searching for leaks, managing our operational sites, testing the quality of your water or answering your queries. Each and every person within the business is dedicated to delivering you the safe reliable tap water supply you expect. Click 'Discover more' to hear from our Head of HR, Sian Jenkins.

Last updated 06-07-21

Leakage

We know from our research and conversations with you that the amount of treated water leaking from our network is a key area you want us to tackle, and we are as keen as you are to see that amount reduce.

We are committed to reducing the amount of water lost to leaks both on our network, and in customers’ homes, by 15 per cent between 2020 and 2025 (based on our annual performance).

Leakage is measured in megalitres (1,000,000/million litres) a day (Ml/d) and we could receive an outperformance payment if we exceed our target, or be required to pay an underperformance penalty if we miss it.

We have two levels of underperformance penalties. The first level of payment is incurred if our performance falls between our target and our 2019/20, three year average performance, of 95.1Ml/d. The second level of payment is incurred if our performance is worse than our 2019/20, three year average performance.

During 2020/21 our target was to reduce our annual leakage rate to 95.2 million litres a day.

We have a three year average target of 94.9 million litres a day.

Ofwat also require us to deliver a 0.2 per cent reduction on our 2019/20 three year average baseline of 95.1 Ml/d baseline – highlighted in the graph above.

How have we performed?

During 2020/21 with exceeded our target reducing our leakage rate to 92.67 million litres a day – a 1.9 per cent improvement on our 2019/20 leakage levels.

This means that our three year rolling average performance is 94.1 Ml/d, which equates to a 1.1 per cent leak reduction on our baseline.

Due to our outperformance of the target we have earned £0.303 million outperformance payment.

We’re also continually evolving our leakage strategy to reduce our leakage rate and during 2020/21 we:

  • Increased the size of the leakage operations team by including new dedicated roles which focus on asset optimisation
  • Focused significantly on enhancing our network pressures and increased maintenance of our pressure reducing valves
  • Monitored the changing pressures within the pipeline network to prevent bursts and leaks
  • Implemented a new operational system which has improved how our field teams target leaks
  • Used satellite technology to support our leak detection activity which scans 15 per cent of our total network each year
  • Built on learnings from our innovative Smart Networks Trial to develop a new data system which provides further information to field teams.
  • Installed additional meters on key pipelines to enable us to identify leaks quicker and monitor a pipes’ condition
  • Installed more flow and pressure loggers on our network
  • Upgraded much of our leak detection field equipment

The impact of Covid-19

 

There has been no impact of Covid-19 on this measure.

Case Studies

Nine Mile Ride engineering scheme

Keeping customers satisfied during major engineering works

A £1.4 million investment into revamping the water network for thousands of residents in Berkshire saw more than 60 per cent of customers claim they were satisfied with our communication strategy.

My account

Putting customers in full control

We place our customers’ priorities at the heart of what we do and this is why we’re constantly looking at ways to make accessing and managing bills and payment plans easier for them.

Sinkholes

Engineering excellence and agility brings sunken site back to life

In September 2020, the sudden appearance of sinkholes at one of our drinking water storage tanks in Kent triggered a chain of events and challenges which many across the business and beyond have not experienced before, and may never again.