Anglian Water has unveiled a huge £680 million investment programme to be spent across the entire East of England.
The funds will be ploughed into areas of work specifically aimed at preparing the region, which is the driest and one of the fastest-growing parts of the country, to meet the urgent challenges of climate change and population growth, as well as protecting the environment.
Anglian Water’s Director of Customer and Wholesale, Pete Holland said:
“We know this year is going to be tough for our customers, as the cost of living increases for us all. That’s why we’re committed to keeping water bills as low as possible while still preparing our region to meet the significant challenges of a rapidly changing climate, and growing population.
“The average bill of £1.24 per day pays for all the water you need to wash your hands, to drink and to cook, and for every flush of the loo and cycle of the washing machine. But more than that, it helps us build and look after a water network that protects both the environment and our customers while looking ahead to future challenges too.”
A £680 million investment programme: fit for a changing region
Operating in the driest region of the UK, Anglian Water has often highlighted the future challenges of water scarcity facing the East of England. The company’s largest ever five-year business plan, which began in 2020, outlined ground breaking schemes specifically designed to tackle this challenge, while protecting the region’s environment for the long term.
This is the third year of that cycle and will see boots-on-the-ground as this work continues, including:
· Environmental investment: £157million to protect and enhance the natural environment by removing chemicals such as phosphates and ammonia from used water, and working with organisations like The Rivers Trusts on river restoration projects to protect some of the region’s unique chalk stream habitats. This work forms part of Anglian’s £800million Water Industry National Environment Programme (WINEP), which is larger than that of any other water company.
· Tackling CSOs: Within that programme of work, £52million will be spent on work tackling Combined Storm Overflows by increasing the network’s capacity to store excess rainwater, investigating and remedying the highest spilling CSOs and installing more monitors across the sewer network, so future investment can be targeted in the places where it can have the most benefit for the environment.
· Securing future supplies: £124million continuing work on the region’s biggest water infrastructure project for a generation, creating hundreds of kilometres of new interconnecting pipelines and associated infrastructure to move water around the region wherever and whenever needed. This is part of an ambitious new investment in resilience to keep taps running and minimise the impacts of future droughts, and reducing the amount of water taken directly from the environment.
· Helping customers save water: £31million will be spent on the continuation of the company’s programme to roll out over 1 million upgraded water meters across the region, helping customers to understand their water usage and identifying leaks in customer’s homes to better meet demand for water in the future.
· Reducing leakage: £11million on continuing to drive down leaks, retaining Anglian Water’s position as having the lowest level of leakage of any water company in the UK, by almost half.
The company will also invest heavily in maintaining and improving customer service, providing top quality drinking water and protecting the region against severe weather such as drought and flooding.