Debates between Lord Watts and Lord Douglas-Miller during the 2019-2024 Parliament

Water Companies: Licence Conditions

Debate between Lord Watts and Lord Douglas-Miller
Wednesday 1st May 2024

(2 months, 3 weeks ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Douglas-Miller Portrait Lord Douglas-Miller (Con)
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I absolutely assure the noble Baroness and the House that that is the case. I was not aware of the issue that she outlined around the outbreak of eczema. I am not sure if that is related to the water, but I can certainly look into that matter for her. The Environment Agency spends a great deal of time on this, and it is one of the issues that we can be really proud of. We get an unbelievably good service provided in terms of clean water that goes into every household across this country for a very modest price.

Lord Watts Portrait Lord Watts (Lab)
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Why do the Government allow these water companies to retain profits when there is so much need for investment and given their poor performance and the way that they are polluting our rivers and seas?

Lord Douglas-Miller Portrait Lord Douglas-Miller (Con)
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The noble Lord perhaps needs to refresh his memory on exactly what a private company is and how that works. When you make an investment into a public company, like a water company, you expect to get some return on that investment, and it is only right and proper that everybody does. We are talking about pension funds as well as individuals.

Sewage Pollution: Lakes and Rivers

Debate between Lord Watts and Lord Douglas-Miller
Tuesday 30th April 2024

(2 months, 3 weeks ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Douglas-Miller Portrait Lord Douglas-Miller (Con)
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I will certainly commit to taking the noble Baroness’s suggestion back to the department.

Lord Watts Portrait Lord Watts (Lab)
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My Lords, have not the regulator and Ministers allowed the water companies to rip off the general public for the last 13 years? Can the Minister guarantee that no water company will be nationalised, and that they will wait for them to be bankrupt and then take them into public ownership?

Lord Douglas-Miller Portrait Lord Douglas-Miller (Con)
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My Lords, the Government are committed to a system of independent economic regulation and have no plans to bring the water companies into public ownership. Since privatisation, the private water sector model has unlocked around £215 billion of investment and delivered a wide range of benefits, including a fivefold decrease in supply interruptions to customers and a reduction in leakages by one third.

Fur: Import and Sale

Debate between Lord Watts and Lord Douglas-Miller
Monday 22nd April 2024

(3 months ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Douglas-Miller Portrait Lord Douglas-Miller (Con)
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The noble Baroness is absolutely right about the numbers there. As I said earlier, I do not have an exact date for that response, but I am pressing for it to come out as soon as possible.

Lord Watts Portrait Lord Watts (Lab)
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My Lords, what are the arguments for not banning fur products coming into the country? It does not seem to me that there is any important reason why we should not ban them. I think the vast majority of the public would support that move. What arguments are the Government putting forward for not banning them?

Lord Douglas-Miller Portrait Lord Douglas-Miller (Con)
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I thank the noble Lord for his question. I am not in a position to go into that level of detail right now, so I will write to him.