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  • by Trevor Loveday

Severn Trent pledges £1.2bn to "long-term sustainability commitments"

Severn Trent has unveiled plans to invest £1.2 billion in delivering “long-term sustainability commitments” over the next five years.

Included among the company's list of more than 50 pledges were the following.

Delivery of a “Triple Carbon Pledge” of net zero emissions, 100% energy from renewable sources and 100% electric fleet, all by 2030. Included under this commitment were 100% renewable energy by 1 April 2020 and purchasing only electric cars from now, and only electric vans from 2023.

It will work with around 9,000 farmers to reduce pollutants in 44 catchments. The company said it will halve the number of pollutions in its region over the next five years and improve the quality of a third of the region’s rivers. It will, it pledged, invest £350 million by 2025 to improve final effluent discharge and “explore nature-based solutions” to remove harmful nutrients, from rivers.

Severn Trent said it will reduce leakage by 15% by 2025 and halve it by 2045;

It said 1% of its profits above £10 million will, over the next five years, go to the Severn Trent Community Fund, for projects in its local communities. And it will work with the rest of the water sector to eradicate water poverty by ensuring that no combined water and waste bills to be greater than 5% of disposable income by 2030.

The company said its £1.2bn commitment will be split across the following four segments:

Triple Carbon Pledge £0.20 bn

Restoring the natural habitat £0.70 bn

Managing water scarcity £0.25 bn

Our role in Society £0.05 bn

Severn Trent chief executive, Liv Garfield (pictured), said: “By committing to invest £1.2 billion in the next five years we believe we can make a real difference to the environment and people we serve while delivering strong business outcomes at the same time.”

Chair of Natural England, Tony Juniper, said of Severn Trent’s commitment to biodiversity: “This very significant contribution from Severn Trent toward the creation of a national Nature Recovery Network could not be more welcome. If we are to achieve our goal to be the first generation to leave nature in a better state than we found it then this is exactly the kind of leadership, vision and partnership working that we will need."

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