Welsh Water Must be Held Accountable Say Lib Dems

Responding to the annual report by water regulator Ofwat, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have stated that Welsh Water must be held accountable for their failures to prevent water pollution incidents.

The report by Ofwat names Welsh Water as one of the worst six water companies in the UK. The company performed particularly poorly in drinking water standards, water supply interruptions and water quality.

The company also failed to meet its pollution incidents target.

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have been running a campaign to stop sewage dumping in Welsh rivers, lakes and seas and have previously called for executive bonuses for Welsh Water to be banned and for the money to be redirected into infrastructure improvements.

In Wales, over the last two years, there have been 203,071 dumps lasting 1,687,475 hours in Welsh rivers. Two weeks ago, an analysis of Environment Agency data by the Welsh Liberal Democrats revealed that Welsh Water has dumped sewage onto our Blue Flag beaches 579 times, lasting an astonishing 6,757 hours.

Over the last 2 years, executives at Welsh Water have received £2.4 million – including £808,000 in bonuses despite the poor performance of the company and the fact that it is officially a ‘non-profit’.

Besides a ban on water company bonuses, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have also called for the Welsh Labour Government to better support Natural Resources Wales and to strengthen legalisation to raise standards for water companies. They also accused the Conservatives of failing to legislate to prevent sewage dumping or to give Ofwat any real regulatory teeth at a Westminster level.

Commenting Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader and Mid & West Wales Senedd Member Jane Dodds said:

“These are yet more disappointing results for Welsh Water yet the company has continued to give out large bonuses to its executives despite these poor results, supposedly being a non-profit and the ongoing sewage dumping scandal.

“These bonuses that are rewarding failure should be banned immediately and the finances redirected directly into improving infrastructure across the network.

“The Conservatives have failed to legislate against sewage dumping at a Westminster level at the same time as failing to give Ofwat any real regulatory teeth.

“We also need to see the Welsh Labour Government act to ensure that Natural Resources Wales has the funding and staffing it needs to do its job properly and that legislation is strengthened so that Water Companies can be more strictly regulated.”

Pic: Elkanah Evans, Llyn Brianne Reservoir

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