The board of South East Water, in conjunction with its shareholders, has protected its commitment to building a long-term responsible business by becoming one of the first water companies to embed its purpose into its Articles of Association.
South East Water’s purpose is “to provide today’s public water service and create tomorrow’s water supply solutions, fairly and responsibly, working with others to help society and the environment to thrive.”
The Articles of Association is a legal document that determines how a company is run. Embedding the purpose into this document means the board must take account of the wider impact South East Water has on customers, communities and the environment now and in the long-term, as well as delivering a fair return for shareholders.
This move is part of South East Water’s lasting commitment to building a responsible business reflecting the inbuilt culture of the business which included developing 10 additional responsible business commitments as part of its business plan in 2018, creating a dedicated Responsible Business Board Committee in 2019 and working with others in the water industry to develop the WaterUK Public Interest Commitments.
This year GRESB, the global benchmarking for infrastructure assets in sustainability, awarded South East Water sector leader status for its work to continue to improve the management and performance of environment, social and governance activities at the company.
David Hinton, CEO at South East Water, said: “We all come to work for a reason, and at South East Water the attitude of people across the organisation is that we want to do the right thing for society, customers and the environment. Our purpose is fundamental to this ethos and it is right that we have enshrined this as a legal commitment to protect that into the future.”
“During the pandemic everyone across the organisation has stepped up to protect the public water supply today, but we have our eyes firmly on the future too so we can ensure the next generation and the environment can thrive.”