Water providers came under increased pressure from the industry watchdog today to ensure drought-stricken areas are helped by regions with more plentiful supplies.
The impact of recent weather - flooding in a time of drought - is one of the major long-term issues water suppliers have to tackle, Ofwat warned, as it unveiled guidelines for how it intends to set tariff limits between 2015 and 2020.
The regulator warned that the water industry will need to find creative ways of working to meet challenges posed by a bigger population and climate change.
As well as giving customers a stronger voice on how water companies deliver services, Ofwat will “send clear signals” to companies on what is required of them, such as trading water during times of drought and heavy rainfall.
Ofwat chief executive Regina Finn said: “These principles will ensure that customers are at the heart of decisions. They need to know that bills are fair and legitimate.”
A more detailed consultation on the methodology to be used for the next price review will be published in the autumn.