Utility Week

Utility Week 23rd March 2018

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Community Dead reckoning Everyone gets frustrated with bureaucracy sometimes. Officialdom operates by its own rules, and at its own pace, and can seem to needlessly try the patience of the best of us. Feel lucky, then, you don't live in Romania, where they take the concept of jobsworthi- ness to the next level. Disconnector ponders thus on hearing of the trials and tribulations of Constantin Reliu, a 63-year-old Romanian man who has been declared dead by the courts in his home country – and has failed to convince judges otherwise, despite turning up to court to dispute it. Constantin's problems began when he did a runner to Turkey 20 years ago and his wife, who never heard from him again, went to court to have him declared dead. Problems arose for the unfor- tunate Mr Reliu when he was arrested in Turkey for a minor offence, found not to have a valid visa, and was deported back to Romania, where offi- cially he no longer exists. Without papers he is unable to work. And although he has a business back in Turkey, to which he'd like to return, he cannot apply for a passport because he's dead. He went to court to try to join the ranks of the living once more, only for the court to rule that he'd waited too long to appeal the decision and would therefore have to remain dead. The great man doesn't know whether Mr Reliu has read any Kaa, but if not, he might want to start. Spoiler alert: it doesn't end well for Joseph K. The toilet taste test The good news for the water industry is that in a blind taste test conducted by researchers in California, participants said they actually preferred the taste of recycled wastewater to bottled water. The bad news is that tap water came in third. Scientists at the University of California, Riverside, asked 143 volunteers to taste the three types of water from unlabelled cups, and were surprised that recycled water came top. There was also a statistical difference between men and women, with women more likely to like the taste of recy- cled water and men more likely to say all three tasted the same. The researchers put this down to the fact that the women were more anxious about taking the test and – pos- sibly alive to the fact they may be drinking toilet water – chose the cup that tasted most similar to bottled water. The irony is that bottled water is treated in much the same way as "indirect potable reuse" water. The odd one out in the Cali- fornian test would have been the ground water, which would have had minimal treatment. The researchers' conclu- sion – somewhat oddly – was that marketing campaigns could make sewage water "less scary" and that campaigns should be aimed at women. Oh yeah? Good luck selling that one. Artificial additives Convincing people to drink toi- let water – no matter how it's been treated – is always going to be a hard sell in Disconnec- tor's opinion, and science be damned. It's the emotion. That said, people may be persuaded to favour tap water over bottled water, if a report out last week by the World Health Organisation gets any traction. If carried out a scientific analysis of 259 bottles of water from 19 locations in nine coun- tries, and found that a stag- gering 242 of them contained beads of microplastics. The average was 325 plastic particles for every litre of water being sold – roughly twice the levels found in tap water in a previous study. Disconnector Editor, Utility Week, and content director, Utilities: Ellen Bennett, t: 01342 332084, e: ellenbennett@fav-house.com; Deputy editor: Jane Gray, t: 01342 332087, e: janegray@ fav-house.com; Associate editor: Suzanne Heneghan, t: 01342 332106, e: suzanneheneghan@ fav-house.com Features editor: Lois Vallely, t: 01342 332080, e: loisvallely@fav-house.com; Deputy news editor: Katey Pigden, t: 01342 332082, e: kateypigden@fav-house.com; Content editor: Alice Cooke, t: 01342 332102, e: alicecooke@fav-house.com; Energy correspondent: Tom Grimwood, t: 01342 332061, e: tomgrimwood@fav-house.com; Reporter: Clare Ruel, t: 01342 332069, e: clareruel@fav-house.com Policy correspondent: David Blackman, e: davidblackman@fav-house.com; Sales executive: Ben Hammond, e: benhammond@fav-house.com. t: 01342 332116; Conference sponsorship manager: Sophie Abbott, t: 01342 332062, e; sophieabbott@fav-house.com; Publisher: Amanda Barnes, e: amandabarnes@fav-house.com. General enquiries: 01342 332000; Membership enquiries: Peter Bissell, t: 01342 332057, e: peterbissell@fav-house.com. ISSN: 1356-5532. Registered as a newspaper at the Post Office. Printed by: Buxton Press, Buxton, Derbyshire SK17 6AE. 2,500 Average circulation Jan–Dec 2017 Membership subscriptions: UK £669 per year. Overseas £781 per year. Contact Peter Bissell on: 01342 332057 Utility Week is a member of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (which regulates the UK's magazine and newspaper industry). We abide by the Editors' Code of Practice and are committed to upholding the highest standards of journalism. If you think that we have not met those standards and want to make a complaint please contact the editor, Ellen Bennett, at ellenbennett@fav-house.com. If we are unable to resolve your complaint, or if you would like more information about IPSO or the Editors' Code, contact IPSO on 0300 123 2220 or visit www.ipso.co.uk UTILITY WEEK | 23RD - 29TH MARCH 2018 | 31 Sarah Merrick @SpeakSarahSpeak Think this might be a new wind record. 13.9GW of generation, supplying a whopping 36.9% of the UK's electricity! Can @NGControlRoom confirm? National Grid Control Room @NGControlRoom Yes, it is the highest metered wind output ever recorded at 10664MW, so including embedded/ non-metered wind 13.9 GW. John Taylor @CoppiceJT It's up to 14.2GW now! WessexWater @wessexwater Happy #WaterSavingWeek! Did you know that most of your household water usage is in the bathroom? Save water by checking and fixing any leaks – leaky toilets, taps and showers can waste more than 200 litres a day. SESWater @SESWater A little rhyme about saving water at home: Days are bleak, when you find a leak, you might even let out a little shriek! Leaky loos & dripping taps waste water & money, contact a @WatersafeUK approved plumber so your day remains sunny! Kevin Bygate @KevinBygate Russian cyber-attack that could put the lights out. Buildings that generate and store their own energy locally are resilient. We call them #BuildingsAsPowerStations by @info_specific EY UK Energy @EY_UK_Energy Steve Robertson, CEO, Thames Water 'In this new world we need to think about the diversity of need. We can't use new technology to close the door to some of customers as we open the doors to others.' #FoUSummit @FutureofUtils #EYEnergy Northern Powergrid @Northpowergrid The increasing use of domestic #solarpanels puts pressure on the distribution network. We're running a project that will monitor the relationship between clustered domestic solar panels, #batterystorage and household demand. Top Tweets

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