As we come together to celebrate World Water Day, let us reflect on the vital importance of water in sustaining life and fostering prosperity for all.

This year’s theme, Water for Peaceunderscores the intrinsic value of water and reminds us all of the imperative to promote water cooperation, equitable access, and sustainable management practices.

In our sector, we champion that water is not merely a commodity; it is the essence of life itself. It is not only a fundamental human right but also a critical resource that transcends borders and cultures. Yet, despite its undeniable significance, billions of people around the world still lack access to safe and clean water. 

As a membership body operating within the UK water sector, we know that our members play a pivotal role in advancing sustainable water management practices, promoting innovation, and advocating for equitable access to water resources. Through their expertise, collaboration, and advocacy efforts, we can as a collective drive positive change and contribute to building a more water-secure world.

As we commemorate World Water Day 2024, let us reaffirm our commitment to being stewards of water, today and every day. 

Together, let us work towards a future where every person has access to clean and safe water, and where water is valued, respected, and protected.

Happy World Water Day!

Happy International Women’s Day from the Institute of Water!

As a membership body committed to fostering inclusivity, we align with the #IWD2024 theme of ‘Inspire Inclusion.’ Today, and every day, we proudly champion diversity as our greatest strength.

In the spirit of inclusivity and empowerment, we extend a warm invitation for network to join us in acknowledging and celebrating the remarkable contributions of women in the water sector and beyond. Share stories of women who inspire you. Whether it’s a colleague, mentor, or industry leader, tag them, tell their stories, and let’s amplify their voices. By shining a light on their accomplishments, we contribute to building a more equitable and inclusive environment within the water sector.

May this International Women’s Day serve as a reminder of the collective strength we possess when we champion inclusivity and diversity.

Let’s celebrate the achievements of women in the water sector, today and every day, as we work together to create a more equitable and inclusive future.

Have you ever wondered how to share your CPD story within the water sector?

When someone asks about your CPD aspirations – whether it’s your mentor, manager, or even a curious relative – let your passion shine through! Picture this: You’re on a quest for professional growth, and your commitment is unwavering.

Imagine responding with enthusiasm, sharing your dedication and the exciting steps you’re taking to shape your career. It’s not just about ticking boxes; it’s about building a foundation for your success.

And hey, don’t forget to weave in the magic of the water sector! Let them see the profound impact it has on your journey. It’s a unique story often missed in everyday conversations but definitely worthy of a spotlight.

By opening up about your experiences, you’re not just crafting your professional narrative – you’re adding your voice to a conversation that deserves more attention. So, go ahead, share those insights! You never know who might find inspiration in your compelling journey through the water sector.

Cheers to your growth, and here’s to making your narrative not just impactful for you but for everyone around you!

By Rob Bradley, Professional Standards Manager, Institute of Water

By Mia Tarrant, Process Scientist, Severn Trent

It’s been another busy quarter for the Rising Stars, starting with a workshop with Water Aid hearing about their strategy for the next year and how we can all be involved in raising awareness and support.

In September, the rising stars played a big role in the Institute of Water’s Annual Conference. The busy 4-day trip to Cardiff started off with the rising stars facilitating discussions in a ‘Meet the Leaders’ event, where we were able to have great conversations with some industry-familiar faces. Day 2 was a jam-packed day at the conference, networking and hearing some thought-provoking discussions around trust in the industry. Day 3 carried on the theme of trust, whereby the rising stars were invited to both facilitate and be panellists on their own session, discussing the topic of trust with someone new to the industry. Some really interesting points were made, including, “have you been told your manager trusts you?” Despite being the last-but-one session to conclude the conference, it was a brilliant session with an engaging question and answer session. This was a great way to conclude the conference as it was many of the rising star’s first time on a panel.

The final day in Cardiff was spent at Arup, hosted by Welsh Area Rising Star, Kathryn Evans. The day began with a leadership and career insights workshop, followed by a discussion around modelling and catchments. This ended with a trip to see Cardiff’s innovative rain gardens.

The Institute of Water’s Northern Area has appointed a new President, Monisha Gower, Assets Director at Northumbrian Water. Outgoing Northern Area President Noela Fitton, Head of Strategic Bids at United Living handed over the role at Northumbrian Water’s offices on Wednesday, 27th September 2023.

Monisha, who has in-depth experience in delivering end-to-end, high-value projects/programmes and providing consistent and dynamic management, will begin the role immediately.

The Institute of Water is the only professional body dedicated entirely to supporting the careers of people in the UK water sector, and its purpose is to enable members to reach their full potential to drive the sector forward. The Northern Area is one of eight geographical areas covering the UK and the committee runs a varied programme of in-person events, webinars and development opportunities across the calendar year.

Upon being appointed, Monisha said: “It’s a real honour to take on the role of President for the Northern Area of the Institute of Water and I look forward to working with and supporting members during my time in post.

The Institute offers such great opportunities for its members to learn, develop and widen their network, whether they are already working within the water industry or are aspiring to do so in the future. Through such support and development, it can help our sector here in the North to become the go-to place to build a career.”

The Institute of Water thanks Noela for her brilliant commitment to heading the Northern Area for the past year, and welcomes Monisha to the IWater family.

If you would like more information about the Institute of Water, including becoming a member and how to get involved, then please email

From left to right: Noella Fitton, Head of Strategic Bids, United Living and Monisha Gower, Assets Director, Northumbrian Water.

By Mia Tarrant, Process Scientist, Severn Trent

The busiest quarter for the rising stars, an excellent summer, with some interesting visits.

Late May, our Scottish Area Rising Star, Isla Jones hosted the 2023 Rising Stars cohort in Edinburgh for a jam-packed 2 days at Scottish Water’s Juniper House. It was an incredible visit focused on scientific services and innovation. There were some fascinating tours of the microbiology, organic
and inorganic chemistry labs; great presentations about scientific services, DWQR and Scottish Water’s research and innovation; and engaging discussions with about their careers and CPD.

The trip culminated at The National Robotarium, where all our Rising Stars were left thinking about how the world of robotics could be incorporated into the future of the water industry.

In June, the Rising Stars went to Belfast for a trip of NI Water and WSP hosted by NI Area Rising Star, Sian Walker. The trip started off with a visit to the iconic Silent Valley Reservoir for a presentation about NI Reservoir act and a tour of the reservoir and tunnels underneath, followed by an innovation workshop back at WSP. Day 2, they visited NI Water for presentations on NI regulatory model and asset performance, followed by a CEO masterclass with Sara Venning. The trip finished back at WSP to learn more about water resource planning and CFD modelling.

The next trip for the Rising Stars will be to Exeter hosted by SW Area Rising Star, Gulshen Unveren and then the IWA UK YPN conference in Birmingham.

Last Thursday evening (29th June 2023), the Welsh Area hosted the 17th Annual Innovation Awards at Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff. It was a great opportunity to celebrate innovation within the water sector and network with industry colleagues. There was a wide array of quality submissions and Kit Wilson, Welsh Area President and Steve Youell, former National Chair were on hand to present the awards.

A huge thank you to all of the applicants, judges and Welsh Area sponsor Pump Supplies, for their efforts in making the event possible.

And the 2023 winners are…

Clever Data Category:

  • Winner: EDM anomaly detection (EDMAD) model by Daniel Okereke & Willow Smallbone (Dŵr Cymru Data Team), Claire Thrift, Jacek Pijanka & Ifan Jones (Dŵr Cymru Wastewater Assets Team).
  • Highly Commended: Automation of Finance Reporting by Matthew Davies, Dŵr Cymru

Clever Data Winner: EDM Anomaly Detection (EDMAD) Model

Market Adaptation Category:

  • Winner: Optical, Chalk Dosing Trial By Alexandra Wilson, Gareth Jones, Scott Butler, Craig Davey of Dŵr Cymru, Arthur Doucin of Omya & Louise Durham of SNF. 
  • Highly Commended: Be PestSmart: choosing pesticides wisely By Dŵr Cymru, Water Services Science Catchment Team.

Market Adaptation Winner: Optical, Chalk Dosing Trial

Collaborative Working Category:

  • Winner: Hereford Collaborative Wetlands: Advancing Industry Knowledge, Confidence and Working Practices of Co Delivered and Co-Funded Water Quality Improvements by Vyvyan Evans & Elliot Burge of Dŵr Cymru, Herefordshire Council Planning Department, Herefordshire Council Built and Natural Environment team, Wye and Usk Foundation Design and Delivery team and Environment Agency Innovative Permitting Team
  • Highly Commended: Anaerobic Digester Foaming Research and Taskforce by Faye Ward, Ian Parry, Jonathan Dean, Chris Jones, Dave Holthofer (Dŵr Cymru) and Russell Mulliner (AD Ingenuity), Joe Merry (Stantec) and Andrew Bowen (Skanska)

Collaborative Working Winner: Hereford Collaborative Wetlands

Ideas Category:

  • Winner: A river-health-led approach to combined sewer overflows By Owain Morgan from ARUP
  • Highly Commended: ‘Smart’ maintenance By Technolog & Dŵr Cymru Wastewater Networks

Ideas Winner: A river-health-led approach to combined sewer overflows

Committee AwardBeacons Water Group, Dŵr Cymru Water Services Science Catchment Team!

Committee Award: Beacons Water Group

The overall Welsh Area Innovation Award Winner, who will represent the Welsh Area at the National Presidents Dinner is The Hereford Collaborative Wetlands project team for their collaborative wetlands projects which is advancing industry knowledge, confidence and working practices of co-delivered and co-funded water quality improvements.

Congratulations to everyone and thank you from the Committee!

Welsh Area Innovation Awards Committee with Kit Wilson, Welsh Area President

In April, we opened applications for the volunteer role of Young Persons’ Network National Co-Rep to help support our YPN.

We were elated to find two candidates of such strength, that we offered roles to both.

Welcome to Dr Natalie Lamb, National Water Industry Account Manager at QCL, our new National YPN Co Rep, and Astrid de Jaham, Project Manager at South West Water, our new National Vice Rep.

Natalie and Astrid will work alongside our current National YPN Co Rep, Abu Rashid, in helping our young professional membership navigate the various opportunities available to them and support them through their professional development.  

Both Natalie and Astrid are passionate about creating learning opportunities and are dedicated to diversifying IWater’s membership population through their work for the YPN.

Upon accepting her new role, Astrid said “I am elated to be part of an organisation that offers open access to professional development for everyone within the water industry. As the new Young Professional Network Vice Rep, I’m honoured and thrilled to represent young professionals within the water community. I look very much forward to making every voice heard and implementing actions to help boost YPN’s careers.”

Thank you to Emma Webster for her dedication and work as our previous National YPN Co-Rep.

If you would like to find more information about our YPN, please click here

Action to protect the environment and fix leaks must be a priority for water companies to build trust with their customers, according to a new study from the Consumer Council for Water (CCW).

New [1]research published today (Friday) by CCW shows that general levels of trust in water companies is high when it comes to providing reliable and sustainable services and keeping customers informed.

However, fewer than half of people (43%) trust water companies to protect and enhance the environment.

CCW wanted to gain a better understanding of people’s perceptions of water companies, and the wider industry, to ensure that they are addressing the priorities that matter to the communities they serve.

When asked to describe what water companies could do to build trust with water consumers, reducing pollution and fixing leaks were named as top measures.

Emma Clancy, CCW Chief Executive, said: “Understanding what action needs to be taken to build trust in water companies is imperative if we’re to create a sector that works for people and the environment – which is one of our key ambitions.”

“The two issues most commonly mentioned by people were leaks and polluting of rivers and seas, and these risk further eroding trust in the sector. Companies not only need to address these areas but they should also be clear and consistent in how they communicate their actions to people, with far greater transparency over their performance.”

When asked to describe their water company in their own words, people’s descriptions were more positive than negative – 46% and 34%, respectively. However, nearly half of those surveyed used negative terms to describe the water industry, as a whole. 

Younger people, the less wealthy and consumers living in the North East, Wales and the West Midlands tended to have a more positive perception of their water company and the industry as a whole.

Those of an older demographic, the wealthier and people living in the South East tended to have a more negative perception. 

Two-thirds (62%) of water consumers said their perception of their water company had not changed in the last year. However where it had changed, it tended to be for the worse (23%) with only 11% saying their perceptions had got better.

The report concludes that better communication is key to improving trust in the water sector. As the cost of living crisis continues to hit people in the pocket, it’s even more imperative water companies tell their customers how they are spending their money to improve services and address the concerns they have on issues like enhancing and protecting the environment.

CCW has already begun working with the sector to help water companies improve the way they communicate with the communities they serve, on a range of issues, including the value of water and protecting the environment.

Read the full Perceptions and Trust in Water Companies report. 

In the first quarter of 2023, IWater’s environmental licensing body, Society for the Environment confirmed a greater number of new Registered Environmental Practitioner (REnvP) registrations compared to any previous three-month period – an REnvP record quarter.

The record number of environmental practitioners joining the official register during this period is on par with new Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv) registrants for the first time.

Reacting to the news, Chief Executive of the Society for the Environment, Dr Emma Wilcox CEnv, said:

“As organisations continue to make steps towards a more sustainable way of working, more professionals with proven environmental competence are needed. Our aim is to have such professionals in every discipline. Our Technician, Practitioner and Chartered professionals are all playing a huge role in creating a more sustainable world.”

Emma adds; “With the introduction of the REnvP less than two years ago, it is heart-warming to now know that this has proven to be both an entry route and a progression pathway for environmental professionals that resonates as we hoped. If you joined the REnvP register in our record-breaking quarter on your journey to CEnv, or if REnvP is the perfect fit for your career, welcome to the community and thank you for leading the way.”

Rob Plews CEng REnvP, Associate Director at The Shadbolt Group, achieved REnvP during Q1 of 2023 via membership of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) and noted:

“Bring a Registered Environmental Practitioner compliments my CEng Chartership from IOM3 by confirming that I work in a more varied field beyond core geotechnical work. As a modern geoenvironmental company, recognising that I, and others across the business, have a strong understanding of contaminated land – and how to deal with it – is vital.”

A popular route to REnvP registration is via membership of the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA). Martin Baxter CEnv, Deputy CEO at IEMA, commented on the rising number of REnvP professionals:

“There is a growing demand for people with the skills to implement change for a cleaner, greener future. As businesses translate top-line sustainability targets into on-the-ground action, Registered Environmental Practitioner (REnvP) status will become increasingly important as a mark of practical competence in environmental management and protection.”

By becoming a REnvP, you are highlighting that you have been judged by your peers who have found you to be consistently advancing and advocating good environmental practices. To find out more about IWater’s REnvP offering, click HERE