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southern.water.logo (1)The Island’s water supplier, Southern Water, has announced an average increase of 5.3% on household water bills for 2013, 1.8% more than the national average.

The average bill has gone up £23 a year for customers receiving both both and wastewater services compared to 2012.

The raise is being connected with a major capital improvement programme which is taking place from 2010 to 2015.

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The company says the £1.8 billion scheme is the equivalent of spending nearly £1,000 for every property in the Southern Water region over the five-year period.

The programme includes the replacement of hundreds of kilometres of water mains and sewers, along with schemes to help prevent flooding, safeguard water supplies, reduce leakage, improve water quality and enhance wastewater treatment.

In 2013/14, Southern Water will be spending more than £400 million on:

• The replacement of 23km of water mains to reduce the risk of bursts, leaks and supply interruptions.
• The replacement of 30km of sewers to reduce the risk of sewer flooding and pollution.
• Schemes to reduce the risk of sewer flooding to individual properties.
• Further reducing leakage. The company is on track to beat its 2012/13 target, following one of its best performing years in 2011/12.

Southern Water’s Chief Customer Officer Darren Bentham said: “By ensuring investment in our communities we are able to support thousands of jobs, while delivering improved services and a wide range of environmental improvements such as cleaner rivers and seas.

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“Our five-year spending programme includes more than 330 environmental projects – that’s more than any other water company and makes up a large part of our investment. These projects are in response to new European legislation and will have many environmental benefits.

“However, it’s a fine balance – while our charges must rise to meet the enormous cost of our investment, we have a duty to our customers to keep our increases to a minimum.”

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