Thanks bags - interesting but incredibly one sided don't you think? The trouble with pointing the finger re pollution is that they have lumped together all the companies and added it up. Did he add together all the farmers in the country and add that up... as my guess is there were far more instances of pollution by them. The harsh truth is that no government had allocated the money to bring the GB network up to EU standards and they weren't going to - but by privatising and regulating the companies did clean up bathing waters, improve rivers beyond all recognition (return of the otter...) and, most importantly, improve the quality of water coming out of our taps, which was very mediocre. Oh and the security of supply has improved too - far fewer interruptions to supply than back in the 70s. Grieves my socialistic little heart to admit it, but it was a successful privatisation against these measures. The water companies can only put up charges if they justify it adequately and get approval from OFWAT.