United Utilities is the largest listed water company in the United Kingdom. The company manages the regulated water and wastewater network in the North West England, which includes Cumbria, Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Mersey side. The combined area has about 7 million people, of whom Unitied Utilities serves around 3 million. The company is also involved in property management, offering a range of value-added services, such as leak detection and repair, waste digestion and wastewater system optimization, on-site engineering and water efficiency advisory services, as well as CCTV and drainage, emergency and contingency water supply, network rehabilitation, network modelling, environmental- and standpipe services.
Floods and drought have become more prevalent across United Utilities' operating regions. To adapt to such climate change, the company has adopted a Systems Thinking approach, enabling it to forecast weather conditions and prepare for different scenarios. Climate data is embedded in 1,000 scenarios in the company's Water Resource Management Plan (WRMP) to understand how the company can create the right supply and demand balance against significant uncertainty for the next 25 years.
As for its contribution to climate change mitigation, United Utilities aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 50% from the 2005/06 baseline by 2020 and to achieve a 60% reduction by 2035. In addition, the company has pledged to meet its science-based emissions target (scope 1&2) with a further 42% by 2030 and 100% reduction by 2050 (from its new 2019/20 baseline). It uses 100% renewable electricity since 2021 and will have a 100% green fleet by 2028. The company also aims to restore 1000 hectares of peat by 2030, plant 1 million trees to create 550ha woodland by 2030.