Water companies have been telling Ofwat (the industry regulator) by how much they want to increase water prices over the 5 years from 2010.
Nearly all of the water companies propose price increases over and above inflation. In some areas prices are set to increase by more than 25% over and above the rate of inflation.
The effect of this is that the average domestic water bill in 2015 is expected to be £350, with bills increasing £30 over the five-year period, it said.
The water companies argue that prices rises are required to cover the high cost of maintaining and improving infrastructure.The spectre of climate change resulting in increased risk of flooding has also resulted in a renewed urgency for investment to reduce the likelihood and impact of flooding.
Critics of the water companies accuse them of profiteering and putting their shareholders before their customers.
Personally, I believe that water is too cheap. Like energy it is a valuable resource that is all to easy to be taken for granted. Clean potable water from your tap presently costs about £1 for 1 cubic meter. That's £1 for 1,000L.That's about a thousand times better value than the bottles that you buy at the garage!
I don't think that water companies should get away with making large profits whilst the infrastructure of the country's water supply is inadequately maintained. Re-investment and new investment is crucial and should be carried out as a matter of course. However, as the world's population continues to grow and our demand for a finite resource increases, I think the intrinsic value of water (in many ways like oil) can only go one way. And that is up.
Whether you think water is too cheap or not, I think it is pure common sense not to waste it!
Simple, innovative products like Hippo the Water Saver and the Water Two greywater harvesting device can help.
More water saving tips and advice can be found on our information page : How to Reduce Your Water Bills.
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