Wednesday, July 13, 2005

London Water Shortage

Here in London we are due for a major water shortage because of a very dry winter, though if one looks back at it, it didn’t seem dry at all. We all know the water table is very low and there is a threat of a ban on sprinklers and hosepipes, well fair enough if that is going to help. The thing is there is a lot about this that is frustrating and downright wrong.

You have the mayor suggesting people don’t flush their loos if they only go for a piss, ummm, in this heat, not a bloody chance.

You know what would be the best bet, I will tell you. Get Thames Water to fix the leaks, they leak about 915 million litres of a day, a DAY I tell you, that is roughly 30% of their overall output per day, if that water didn’t go missing then I can see we might not have a problem at all. What is worse is that OFWAT are doing squat diddly about this. Thames was privatised back in 1986, on the premise that as a private company they would get the funds to fix the leaks, well lets see in the past 20 years it has gotten progressively worse, and worse and worse, and in the same time, they have put prices up more and more and more. The German owned company awarded its directors even bigger and bigger payrises and bonuses. Can we see the direction the company is going. They claim they are doing all they can, rubbish, it don’t take 20 years to fix it, and it don’t take 20 years of under investment to get even worse. The company prefers to build more water storage, instead of fixing the problem. They if you look at its track record would prefer metering, and why, so it can make even more money off the customer.

The solution would be for OFWAT to fine the company which it can do, and fine it up to 10% of its turnover, it is allowed to do so, but as OFWAT is a waste of space, it won’t. Thames could also fix the leaks, which will never happen and the idea that they will fix 850 miles of pipes over the next five years is rubbish, we have heard it all before, and yet, nothing is done. Another solution would be to make sure householders use less, for example, instead of the stupid idea that Thames had of a Hippo in the cistern, why not make sure all the customers have low flush toilets, so instead of flushing 12 – 18 litres of clean water everytime, make them use half of it, and it would still be more than enough. At a stroke that would cut the amount of water used in a household. At the same time set up systems so that the water from washing the dishes, having a shower, washing clothes is used on the garden for example or even recycled. It works in other European countries, so why is it that here in wasteful Britain we don’t, it beggars belief.

Putting people on meters will not solve the problem, because there is a reason why we aren’t metered in the first place, to ensure that all have access to clean water. That is why the Victorians did this in the first place. If you meter the water, then those on low incomes and benefits are going to need assistance to have clean running water at all times, something which is easy enough to do without having to resort to meters.

There are so many ways which this could be done, making people more efficient in their water use, but the main one is to make Thames Water fix the leaks that let 30% of the water drip away and never reach its destination. Just think how much that would save, but that isn’t something that will ever happen, because Thames Water, is a wasteful, useless company, whom have no concept of anything, other than lining their pockets with more and more cash from their customers without giving something in return.

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