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Integrated Water Cycle

Since its inception, Hera has also operated in the field of integrated water service management, from the distribution of drinking water to the collection and purification of waste water, and has the exclusive right to these services in seven provinces in Emilia-Romagna and the north of Le Marche, based on long-term concessions (on average until 2022).

Following the mergers that took place, the physiological development of activities and investments made, the Group has essentially doubled its number of customers, upgraded the purification plants, expanded the distribution and sewerage networks by around 10 thousand linear km and increased the volume of activities by an average annual rate of 4%.

Customers ('000)6176408009149821,0151,1541,1661,1731,184
Water network (Km)17,90017,90018,46523,91924,50824,62326,11826,29626,53526,772
Volums sold

The water network, like all Group networks, is currently controlled by a single remote control system, created in 2007 and deemed to be one of the most advanced in Europe. Remote monitoring of networks has made it possible to optimise maintenance and supervision processes, guaranteeing greater efficiency and lower running costs. Thanks to these systems and the modernisation of the networks, recorded performance (in terms of average leaks per kilometre) has been amongst the best domestically.

The entire environmental control system, from the analysis of the water before distribution to the waste water collection and purification systems, has recorded important progress and guaranteed a high quality of service and maximum safety for customers.

The Group is the second most important operator in Italy by sales volumes, with a continuous and extensive presence in the reference market.


For the entire decade, Hera’s results have shown constant growth of EBITDA; running costs and operating investment costs have also been covered with a trend towards a cash balance.

The referendum of June 2011 repealed the regulation governing the charge on return on investment, although the Ministerial Decree of 1 August 1996, which defines the standardised tariff method for the integrated water service (“Di Pietro” Ministerial Decree), remains in force. The resulting uncertainty should however be overcome following Law 214/2011, which gives the Electricity and Gas Authority the task of defining the tariff structure in future. In this context, however, the Hera Group is applying the agreements defined with the individual local authorities, some of which expire on 31 December 2012 and others in subsequent years.

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