The UK is committed to greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction targets and has introduced a number of initiatives to achieve these. Until recently, these targeted energy-intensive industries and, thus, the water sector was not significantly affected. However, from 2010, UK water companies will need to report their emissions under the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC). Both Ofwat (the economic regulator for water companies in England and Wales) and the Northern Ireland Authority for Utility Regulation (NIAUR) now require annual reporting of GHG emissions in accordance with both Defra Guidelines and the CRC. Also, carbon impacts must now be factored into all water industry investment planning in England and Wales. Building on existing approaches, the industry has developed standardised carbon accounting methodologies to meet both of these requirements. This process has highlighted gaps in knowledge where further research is needed.

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