Water Metering in England and Wales

25 Pages Posted: 11 Nov 2013 Last revised: 6 Feb 2016

See all articles by David Zetland

David Zetland

Leiden University - Leiden University College

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: August 7, 2015


Water meters are necessary for tracking leaks, using prices to encourage conservation, and allocating costs in proportion to use. They are not necessary when water is abundant or costs are covered by taxes or transfers. This paper discusses the move to residential water metering in England and Wales. The basic impacts of the move --- lower metered demand and higher charges for heavy water users --- are predictable, but other impacts are controversial. An increase in "water poverty" among poorer families has attracted criticism and half-hearted solutions. Incomplete information on abstractions and leakage has cast doubt on environmental benefits. The paper ends with recommendations for improvement.

Keywords: Water meters, water conservation, equity, carbon

JEL Classification: D1, D6, H2, H42, I38, L95, Q25, Q56

Suggested Citation

Zetland, David, Water Metering in England and Wales (August 7, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2352674 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2352674

David Zetland (Contact Author)

Leiden University - Leiden University College ( email )

P.O. Box 13228
Den Haag, 2501EE

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/staffmembers/david-zetland#tab-1

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