This website uses cookies. Cookies are text files that websites place on your computer to collect information about your visit. Find out how we use cookies and how to switch them off here: Cookie Policy

Doing the right thing for the environment

Waste water

Through investment of over £1 billion in environmental quality measures since 2002, we have delivered substantial improvements to Scotland’s environment. In 2014/15, we reduced environmental pollution incidents by 5.66%.
The effective operation of our sewers and waste water treatment works contributed to 71 bathing waters achieving full compliance. In our new, 6 year investment programme, we are planning around £500 million of investment to further protect and enhance the environment.


The overall number of overloaded sewer flooding incidents in 2014/15 due to heavy rain decreased by 17%. The overall number of internal sewer flooding incidents due to other causes, such as blockages decreased by 18%. In our investment plans for 2015-21, we are proposing around £45 million to start delivering solutions to external sewer flooding problems, and around £100 million for further solutions to internal flooding issues.

Renewable energy

We have installed more than 4,000 smart meters at our sites to target energy efficiency opportunities. We can now generate 45GWh of the 450GWh of electricity we need every year. Last year we increased our renewable installed capacity by 60%. Our portfolio now includes hydro, wind, solar and combined heat and power (CHP). More than 40 treatment works are now either partially or fully self-sufficient. We expect to be facilitating more energy generation than we consume by 2018/19.


We are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and ensuring all parts of Scottish Water consider carbon and wider sustainability issues. We have reduced our carbon footprint for 7 consecutive years, by a total of 18%. Our carbon footprint for 2013/14, the most recently reported year, showed a decrease of 3.3%. Our water service continues to have the lowest carbon intensity in the UK, largely due to the opportunity to use gravity to supply many customers.