Can Nationalisation Protect England’s Dwindling Water Supplies?
We’re increasingly hearing in the news that the world is rapidly running out of water… and here in England, the Environment Agency recently warned that we’re set to run out of water within 25 years. So as you can see, it’s a very real problem and one that the entire world needs to work together on to find viable solutions and protect this particular resource for future generations.
Writing for the Guardian, Sondhya Gupta – campaign manager at SumOfUs – explained that where England is concerned at least, big corporations and our economic structures are to blame for our dwindling water supplies.
Climate change threats and population growth are having a huge impact on our supply, but these have been exacerbated by the fact that the water industry has been prioritising profit over everything else.
She suggests in her article that nationalisation could be the solution to the problem, as privatisation has failed. As this most essential of all resources grows evermore scarce, the water industry continues to see windfall profits and receive tax breaks… as household bills continue to increase.
As these suppliers continue to profit, water is wasted carelessly through the refusal to repair three billion litres of leaks around the UK.
“We simply turn on our tap and use water from whatever company operates in our area. That means companies have little incentive to make the service better. They’ve grown greedy and unsustainable as a result – choosing to line their shareholders’ pockets, instead of reducing bills for ordinary people,” Ms Gupta went on to note.
She went on to suggest that nationalising the water industry in the UK is what will work best for customers, as well as ensuring conservation of the country’s water supply for the next 25 years… and well beyond that.
“Having our water industry run by public servants who are elected and are accountable to voters means that we can reinvest money in technologies, maintenance and systems that will ensure our water supply’s viability – instead of giving huge payouts to shareholders,” Ms Gupta concluded.
However, recent research from Water UK revealed a big drop in public support for nationalisation of the water industry. Some 42 per cent of adults say they support this idea, while 37 per cent are against it… and just 33 per cent say they have confidence in trade unions and local councils running water companies.
Michael Roberts, chief executive of Water UK, explained that the water industry is indeed delivering on its promises to customers, the environment and the communities they serve, succeeding in increasing investment, cutting leaks and improving miles upon miles of rivers.
He went on to add that water service nationalisation isn’t currently a top priority for government spending and services miss out on funds that are diverted towards education, pensions, health and more.
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