15 November 2023
If you care about the crisis of sewage in our rivers and seas, you might know that the new Environment Secretary Steve Barclay is now in charge of sorting this out.
But did you know that he's married to Karen Barclay, who is the Head of Regional Engagement at Anglian Water (and was previously Head of Public Affairs)?
Anglian Water is one of the privatised English water companies, providing nearly seven million people with water and owned by a Canadian pension fund, an Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund and asset managers in Australia.
Anglian Water is currently under investigation by both Ofwat and the Environment Agency for illegal sewage dumping. It's the worst company for self-reporting pollution. It has killed 5000 fish while using sewage pumps that were nearly 40 years old. It’s tipped untreated sewage into the North Sea. And last year the company's TV advert was banned for being misleading about its pollution record.
Since privatisation, Anglian Water has racked up £6.6 billion in debt, paid for by its customers. Last year it gave out £92 million to shareholders despite hiking bills AND its CEO got a pay rise from £1.3 million to £1.4 million because of his ‘good performance’.
We need an Environment Secretary who will take this company into public ownership as a matter of priority, so it can work for people and planet, not profit.
Steve Barclay is going home to an Anglian Water boss every day, so he cannot do a good job of standing up for the people, the rivers and the seas of the East of England. Please share this blog and our video if you agree.
Photo used under creative commons licensing, thanks to UK Government.