The National Association of Water Companies (NAWC) and U.S. Chamber of Commerce has announced the launch of Water Is Your Business, an activation campaign designed to increase local dialogue—informed by facts—on the critical need to address the nation’s decaying water infrastructure and mobilize communities to become actively involved in finding solutions to this challenge.
Communities across the nation are relying on a water infrastructure that is outdated, overused, and underserviced. Water mains are particularly at risk, now breaking at an astounding rate of 650 per day, or 240,000 every single year: a number that is expected to increase with the majority now approaching the end of their useful lives. These breaks have serious health and economic implications, often halting or impeding clean water delivery for days on end.
“By providing a fact-based, interactive look at the reality of water infrastructure issues facing our nation, we can help end the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ mentality that has kept investment at insufficient levels. We must work together to find solutions now, rather than waiting until the costs are too high,” said Michael Deane, executive director of the NAWC.
“No business can be started or maintained without a safe and reliable water supply, but our infrastructure—once a marvel of the modern world—has been stretched beyond its capacity and has fallen into disrepair,” said Janet Kavinoky, executive director of Transportation and Infrastructure, U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “By modernizing our national water infrastructure, we can improve commercial efficiency, increase U.S. competitiveness in the global economy, and create much-needed jobs in the near term.”
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) places the cost of repairing, replacing, and upgrading aging water and wastewater infrastructure at more than $600 billion over the next 20 years. Most of that funding will be spent at the local level, and the Water Is Your Business website is a tool that public leaders, businesses, and the general public can use to make the case for immediate investment in U.S. water infrastructure. The site includes current facts and figures, information, and content about the realities of U.S. water infrastructure, and asks visitors to join the campaign and share it with their networks.