Blackpool Council leads public sector towards water self-supply
Blackpool Council is set to become the first local authority to take the step towards managing its own water supply following its application to Ofwat for a water and sewerage licence.
If granted, this licence will enable Blackpool Council to buy water supply and wastewater services directly from United Utilities for its buildings and associated premises, but it will manage its own retail services for over 120 sites across the borough.
It is estimated that the move will achieve cost savings of up to £194,000 over three years. In the first year alone, anticipated savings are in the region of £50,000, with the potential for further savings through additional cost and consumption efficiency projects.
Cllr Fred Jackson, Cabinet Member Responsible for the Environment, said: “This is an exciting initiative and we are looking forward to the opportunities that a self-supply licence offers us in managing our water usage responsibly, efficiently and cost-effectively.
“We are the first public sector organisation to apply for this licence. There are many benefits such as reducing administration costs and cutting out the margin that goes to others in the supply chain. We will pay the price that retailers pay to the water company which will deliver significant savings.
“The licence also gives us a voice as it offers certain rights such as voting rights which can help influence the future development of the water market and the water strategy of the wholesaler.”
To facilitate the application, Blackpool Council has entered into a partnership agreement with self-supply specialist Waterscan.
Waterscan will take on retail functions, help deliver cost savings and efficiencies direct with the wholesaler, provide effective water-consumption management and ensure compliance with relevant regulatory codes.
The company’s Managing Director, Neil Pendle, said: “We congratulate Blackpool Council on being the first public sector organisation to take a proactive approach to optimising efficiency in the open water market through its application to self-supply. We look forward to working closely with the council team to achieve its goals and to signal to other public sector bodies how they too could reduce their water footprint and costs.”
- Ofwat consults on new retail licences Ofwat has launched a new consultation on changes to water company retail licences which are proposed to pave the way for... Read More >
- Water sector needs to 'hit refresh', Ofwat Chairman warns Ofwat Chairman Jonson Cox has warned that he does not believe the sector "has gone far enough" in addressing customer... Read More >
- Ofwat uses reserve to reduce licence fees Ofwat plans to draw cash from its reserve claim during its current financial year to fund planned expenditure and enable... Read More >
- Changing the way water utilities think George Hesmondhalgh, managing consultant at Capgemini, says companies need to stop viewing legislation as an obligation... Read More >
- The price of water As part of our Utility of the Future campaign, Robin Hackett looks at whether low water bills can be maintained long term Read More >
- Scottish Water starts planning for the long term For SR21, Scottish Water is moving away from the traditional approach to business plans and developing a blueprint for the... Read More >
- Football teams and water companies: Closer than you think New season, new league, new challenges... Egremont Group's Owen Quinn and Alex Graham on the parallels between football... Read More >
- Abstract concept: How can water companies reduce abstraction? Despite concerns over supplies, water companies face pressure to reduce abstraction. As part of our Utility of the Future... Read More >