The new water service to be introduced by Veolia will cover a large part of MEL, which includes the northern French city of Lille and its surrounding area. In total, 62 municipalities, adding up to more than a million inhabitants, will benefit from the new water service. From January 1, 2016, elected officials and customers will discover “iléo,” a company set up by Veolia specifically for MEL to develop a water service for tomorrow.
Through iléo, Veolia is putting forward a new form of governance that brings together users, elected officials, and city-dwellers to decide on strategic guidelines. Decision-making will be made more efficient and the service will match the needs of users as closely as possible.
The MEL contract will also include the creation of an ultramodern control center that will integrate all distribution networks and water production plants in order to provide real coordination between production and supply. Veolia will set up a network of localized smart, connected sensors to ensure monitoring, traceability and continuous checking of the water. This will involve 1,000 fixed, latest-generation sensors to find leaks, 30 probes to analyze water quality 24/7, and 362 new meters to cover each sector of the 4,300 km network.
In terms of environmental protection, with iléo, Veolia is committing to a significant reduction in withdrawals from water resources. In the long term, almost 3 million cubic meters of water will be saved, notably through an important reduction in network leaks (-25%).
The targets of this challenge are, by 2023, to raise network efficiency from 79% to 85%, renew all 250,000 water meters and replace 2,400 connections to the distribution network.
Through its “MEL Innovation Accelerator” program, iléo wants to promote the emergence year by year of innovative projects and support them within the local ecosystem, in the fields and sectors that are MEL’s priority: health, digital services and open data, transportation, water and the environment.
As regards the “Iléo Local Développement” program, its aim is to support employment in the area by awarding 80% of its subcontracting to local companies.
Apart from highly efficient operation and strong social commitments, Veolia will be developing a personalized service that meets the needs of each different type of user. The new contract will promote “eco-solidarity” pricing and a reduced subscription rate for residential customers. In a particularly innovative move, 65% of the area’s 300,000 customers will benefit from a progressive pricing scheme and will see their water bill come down.
“Water checks” will also be introduced in the MEL with the help of the CCAS social action center. An annual total of 200,000 euros will be available to support low-income households; conditions for allocating the water checks will be decided on collectively.
Two Water Centers, two mobile centers, five interactive terminals and a partnership with 59 La Poste agencies will facilitate access to water for all and give the area’s citizens ample opportunity to participate close to home.
“Veolia will be working in a real partnership with the Métropole Européenne de Lille to make this new water service one of excellence that will take advantage of the latest advances in technology. It will create value for all and be recognized as doing so, whether in France or abroad,” said Antoine Frérot, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “This success demonstrates our company’s capacity to respond to the key issues for water service in the MEL while contributing to the area’s sustainable economic development.”
Veolia group is the global leader in optimized resource management. With over 179,000 employees* worldwide, the Group designs and provides water, waste and energy management solutions that contribute to the sustainable development of communities and industries. Through its three complementary business activities, Veolia helps to develop access to resources, preserve available resources, and to replenish them.
In 2014, the Veolia group supplied 96 million people with drinking water and 60 million people with wastewater service, produced 52 million megawatt hours of energy and converted 31 million metric tons of waste into new materials and energy. Veolia Environnement (listed on Paris Euronext: VIE) recorded consolidated revenue of €24.4 billion* in 2014. www.veolia.com
(*) 2014 pro-forma figures, including Dalkia International (100%) and excluding Dalkia France.
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