Anglian Water have announced a £497 million investment in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire.
The investment is part of a wider programme across the East of England, costing £6.5 billion between 2020 and 2025.
The plans include £237million to fit smart meters in March and Peterborough and significantly reduce leakage across the county, achieving new, super low levels, £93million to create new interconnecting pipes that can move water around the region wherever and whenever it is needed.
There will also be £7million to install a new strategic sewer for new homes in Huntingdon, and round £7million to reduce flooding in county hotspots. Around half will be spent on sustainable drainage schemes that use nature to slow the flow of rain entering the drains.
CEO of Anglian Water Peter Simpson said: “This is the most ambitious plan we’ve put forward yet with stretching goals that will see us push the frontier in many areas, like leakage, resilience and catchment management, and it’s the biggest investment we’ve ever proposed. We provide an essential public service, so it’s imperative our business responds to customer challenge. Thousands of customers have helped shape the plan – they told us what matters to them most, we’ve taken that on board and created a plan which reflects those priorities.
“The ‘Beast from the East’ and this summer’s heat wave are the kind of extreme weather challenges we’ll see more of in the future as a result of global climate change. The plan we’ve proposed, and the millions of pounds of investment within will tackle these challenges head on to ensure that, despite the likelihood of lower levels of rainfall in the future, there are plentiful supplies of safe, quality water for our growing population.
“Importantly, our plans will deliver this with only a very slight increase in bills- less than 1 per cent over the whole five years with average bills at the end of the period the same as at the start. However, we recognise that for some customers even this miniscule increase is a challenge which is why we’re planning to help on average 475,000 customers every year with one of the most comprehensive support packages in the industry.
“Our plan proposes to accommodate all of this, and crucially, it will deliver this while protecting the environment, something that we agree with our customers is of paramount importance. We’re confident it’s the right plan for our customers and our region.”