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Compulsory meters introduced

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02/03/2006

The Government is to allow a water company to introduce compulsory water meters in the first deal of its kind.

Folkstone and Dover Water Services had applied to the Government for the right to force people to allow it to place meters in their homes to preserve its dwindling water supplies. And the Government has now allowed it to go ahead with its plans as it said it recognised the company’s supplies were falling.

Yet the Government claimed the move would not necessarily lead to the introduction of compulsory meters across the country, as it said this decision had only been a “considered response to the specific long term challenges facing Folkestone and Dover”. It would not apply to all water companies in the UK.

Yet Folkstone and Dover Water Services now expects to increase the number of metered households from 40% to 90% over the next 10 years and the company said that by metering these households it would cut the homes’ water usage by 10% to 15%.

However critics of the scheme say that the introduction of the meters will lead to higher prices, as the £200 cost of installing the meters would have to be recouped somehow – most likely by price increases.

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