Photo: Afghan National Police
Several UK water companies must return £114 million (€131 million) to their customers. Regulator Ofwat reported on Tuesday that companies from England and Wales fell short of certain targets. The refund will be applied to next year’s water bills.
The watchdog examined seventeen companies, including the number of leaks, reduction of pollution incidents and customer service. Only five water companies met their pollution reduction targets, with half of them meeting requirements to reduce leaks.
Water companies in the United Kingdom, which were privatized in the late 1980s, have come under a lot of criticism recently. There are regular sewage leaks that end up in rivers or waters off the coast. At the same time, water company bills are rising faster than inflation, and those companies have paid dividends while not making significant investments.
One company now being reprimanded is Thames Water. The UK’s largest water company was fined more than £3 million at the start of July for illegally discharging wastewater. In addition, the company was threatened earlier this year with collapse under the weight of debts amounting to 14 billion pounds sterling, but the company was saved after investing 750 million pounds sterling.
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