WEET - Next steps for England’s water market and implementation of PR19

Date: 23rd October 2020

Location: Online

Morning, Friday, 23rd October 2020

Online Conference

***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***

This conference will assess the next steps for developing England’s water market, and the priorities for operating within the new 2019 Price Review (PR19) framework.


The discussion at a glance:

  • the PR19 regulatory framework - environmental commitments, costs and financial sustainability
  • a green COVID-19 recovery - preparation, collaboration and delivery
  • infrastructure and resilience - innovation, preparing for future demand, and tackling barriers
  • policy priorities - supporting modernisation and protecting consumers


The policy context - a scan of developments:

  • PR19 - as the water sector enters the new regulatory regime period
  • The Agriculture Bill and the Environment Bill - including plans for moving towards a system of payment for public goods and the introduction of an Office for Environmental Protection (OEP)
  • Covid-19 and the business retail market - Ofwat’s consultation and its Final decisions to address liquidity challenges and increases in bad debt
  • Budget 2020 - with £39m earmarked for water supply and water navigation assets, including the provision of upfront funds for repairs
  • Meeting our future water needs: a national framework for water resources - from the EA outlining future water needs in England and how these can be met while restoring the environment:
    • the scale of action needed
    • the designation of regional groups to address location-specific issues
    • addressing risks to coastal wetlands and ecosystems
  • Report of a review of the arrangements for determining responsibility for surface water and drainage assets ­- commissioned by the Government, which is immediately accepting recommendation
  • Flood and coastal erosion risk management  - the Government’s policy statement on its long-term plan to tackle the risks of flooding and coastal erosion - which included a commitment to consider if additional outcome measures for water companies are required ahead of the 2024 Price Review, and through future Price Reviews, to address flood and coastal resilience


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