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Water poverty in England and Wales

Bradshaw, J.; Huby, M.

Water poverty in England and Wales Thumbnail


J. Bradshaw

M. Huby


Water poverty is conventionally defined as households spending more than 3% and 5% of their net income after housing costs on water. Water bills have risen faster than general prices and faster than earnings since privatisation. In 2009/10, 23.6% of households paying for water in England and Wales were spending more than 3% of their income on water and sewerage and 11.5% were spending more than 5% of their income. The article explores variation in water poverty and prospects for the future. If water bills rise 1% per year faster than household income, water poverty will increase to 35% by 2033 based on a 3% definition. Policy options are discussed.


Bradshaw, J., & Huby, M. (2013). Water poverty in England and Wales. Journal of Poverty and Social Justice, 21(2), 137-148.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jun 1, 2013
Deposit Date Jul 31, 2013
Publicly Available Date Jul 24, 2014
Journal Journal of Poverty and Social Justice
Print ISSN 1759-8273
Electronic ISSN 1759-8281
Publisher Bristol University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 21
Issue 2
Pages 137-148
Keywords Water charges, Water poverty.


Accepted Journal Article (250 Kb)

Copyright Statement
This is a post-peer-review pre-copy edited version of an article published in Journal of Poverty and Social Justice. The definitive publisher-authenticated version Bradshaw, Jonathan and Huby, Meg (2013) 'Water poverty in England and Wales.' Journal of Poverty and Social Justice, 21(2): 137-148 is available online at:

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