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  • by Karma Loveday

Five firms share £850m new investment as part of £2.8bn green recovery package

Five water companies have been allowed £850m of new investment to deliver green recovery schemes, and 12 will be allowed to accelerate £1.9bn of planned environmental investment under draft decisions published by Ofwat this morning.

Severn Trent Water secured the lion’s share of new investment at £565m, with Thames Water allowed £146m, South West Water £81m, United Utilities £63m and South Staffs Water £8m. Of the total, £157m will be spent on addressing harm from storm overflows and trialing the creation of two new bathing rivers; £89m will go on catchment management and nature-based solutions; and £172m on helping customers save water.

The £1.9bn reflects the value of former ‘amber’ or unconfirmed schemes under the Water Industry National Environment Programme, which will now be delivered by 2025.

Ofwat is consulting until 9 June on its decisions, which have been taken in collaboration with Defra, the Environment Agency, the Drinking Water Inspectorate and CCW. It expects to make final rulings in mid July.

The action follows a joint government/regulators’ letter in July 2020 inviting water companies to bring schemes forward to help with jobs and environmental recovery in the wake of Covid-19.


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