Published25th March 2020
Knowledge TypeCase study Lessons learned report
Organisation, National Audit Office
Major ProjectWater Supply and Demand Management
Water Supply and Demand Management
Water companies’ long-term progress on tackling leakage and reducing water consumption has stalled over the past five years, and companies are only now starting to develop bulk water transfer solutions at the scale required. The government has been grappling with these issues for more than a decade but rapid progress is now vital for Defra to deliver on its objective of a resilient water supply. Defra has taken positive steps to give a more strategic focus to water resource planning. But it must make sure that its new national framework and Ofwat’s new funding for companies to develop strategic solutions produce the collaboration and prompt action from water companies that is now needed. Defra will not be able to achieve value for money unless it provides stronger leadership across government, and a much clearer sense of direction to water companies, the water regulators and water consumers.