Southern Water has submitted their proposed Business Plan (Price Review 24) for the 2025-30 regulatory period to Ofwat, setting an ambition beyond anything attempted by the company before.
The company promises to deliver major improvements in water resilience, wastewater treatment, and customer service, as well as enhancement and protection of the precious environment, but to deliver this major and ambitious plan, the company has stated customer bills will have to increase to pay for this future investment.
A record £7.8 billion has been outlined to deliver these benefits and address the challenges, creating an estimated 5,000 jobs across the region and representing around £3500 per household.
This includes the single largest investment made to date of £3.3 billion in improving the environment, which will see a reduction in impact on rivers by cutting the amount of water taken from them, building new longer-term water sources, upgrading their largest water and wastewater treatment sites, boosting water quality, reducing storm overflows, and supporting new housing developments.
Lawrence Gosden, Southern Water’s CEO, said:
“Our proposed record £7.8bn investment over 2025-2030 aims to build on the foundations of our turnaround plan where we promised to deliver a short, sharp, ambitious performance improvement by 2025.
“The investment will ensure significant improvements to the environment in our region including improving water quality in 1,000km of river by upgrading our wastewater treatment works. It will also deliver major improvements in water resilience, in the way we treat wastewater, enhance customer service and increase the number of jobs in our region by an estimated 5,000.
“We know that our past performance has not lived up to our customers’ and our regulators’ expectations. We acknowledge those failings and are doing everything we can to address them. Customer bills will increase but we will mitigate the effects by spreading increases over the regulatory period and significantly increasing our support for vulnerable customers.
“This is right for our environment, communities, investors, and above all for our customers. We look forward to working with Ofwat on their draft determination of our plan next year.”