Thames introduces cash incentive for retailers whose customers cut usage

Retailers in the Thames Water area stand to earn cash incentives when their business customers cut consumption, under a new scheme from the wholesaler.

Thames Water will reward in-region retailers with a one-off payment of 5p per litre per day of water saved for each of their non-household customers. Savings will be measured by comparing three months of meter data before and after any water efficiency interventions are made.

The pilot scheme running until March 2020 (and potentially beyond if it proves successful) stands to benefit the wholesaler by reducing demand, the retailer financially and the customer in terms of both bills and sustainability credentials. While many national retailers have customers in the London area, Castle Water stands to be a major beneficiary, having bought Thames’ non household customer base in 2017.

Gerard Lyden, market development manager at Thames Water, said: “We’ve developed our innovative, financial incentive scheme to help stimulate retailers to look for more ways to help their customers to save water, and get rewarded with a payment when they do.”

The company illustrated that an average school can save 6,000 litres per day from simple improvements such as fixing leaks on toilets, taps and urinals. This would result in a big saving on the school’s water bill and a one-off £300 payment to its retailer from Thames Water.

An extra 2.1m people are due to move into the Thames Water region over the next 25 years. This, combined with climate change, means the company has predicted there will be a shortfall of 350 million litres of water a day between the amount available and the amount needed by 2045. By 2100, this is predicted to increase to 650 million litres a day.

Andrew Tucker, water efficiency manager at Thames Water, added: “While we work very hard to support our domestic customers to cut down on their water use, we don’t have our own non-household customer base so need the retailers to actively promote and deliver water efficiency with us.”