Guide for forthcoming water market

A new guide has been released to help companies prepare for the benefits of the forthcoming opening of the water market to competition in April 2017.

From 1 April 2017 all businesses, charities and public sector organisations of all sizes in England and Wales will be able to switch their water and wastewater supplier for the first time.

Businesses will be able to shop around for a better price and service package or negotiate a better deal with their existing retailer. Most water companies have already published their prices and packages ahead of the move.


Companies that have multiple sites or operate in high water usage sectors such as manufacturing, healthcare, leisure, education, retail and commercial property are most likely to benefit.

The process took place in Scotland in 2008, and since then many Scottish businesses report that they receive a better service and face lower water costs. 

However, the majority are still unaware of the change despite it being less than three months away.

Behavioural science

Water companies are starting to use behavioural science to help customers reduce their water consumption, with many areas of the UK facing a future of water shortages if demand cannot be curtailed.

In Scotland, the market has already delivered an estimated £40 million worth of improved water efficiency measures for customers. 

Suppliers may offer smart meters, similar to those being rolled out by the energy sector, that can help to produce personalised insights into water use. 


A new guide published by environmental news websites edie and Utility Week provides an in-depth summary of the change and how it can be used to generate financial and environmental savings. 

News editor at Utility Week said: “No one knows exactly what will happen after England’s water retail market opens, but if all goes well and the market is a success, this will be a development that the UK will look back on and be proud of.”

To download the guide, click here.

Posted under Water Efficiency and Effluent Management, Aerospace, Automotive, Chemicals, Food and Drink, Public / Government / Charity, Textiles and Other Manufacturing on 10 January 2017