Ofwat, the economic regulator for the water sector in England and Wales, is calling on water companies with bold and innovative projects to solve some of the water sector’s biggest challenges to apply to win the fourth Water Breakthrough Challenge.

To date, Ofwat’s £200 million Innovation Fund has awarded more than £105 million to projects across England and Wales that are pioneering solutions to improve the water sector’s environmental impact – from the transition to net zero to tackling leaks and spills – and to transform services for consumers.

Since 2020, the Water Breakthrough Challenges have seen water companies form new cross-sector collaborations with gas and electric utility providers, universities, charities, SMEs, tech giants, local governments and community organisations.

Previous winners have included robots that patrol water and wastewater pipes to pinpoint cracks, carbon capture technology to convert CO2 into household products, seagrass meadow restoration off the Welsh coast, and projects to power city buses with gas extracted from sewage.

Ofwat will reward up to £40m to even more daring and forward-thinking partnerships led by water companies in Water Breakthrough Challenge 4. It is encouraging entrants to think bigger than ever before and will favour entrants with the greatest focus on generating and sharing knowledge across and beyond the water sector, and those rolling out successful innovations.

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