Would you drink a glass of water, take a big swig for your future?
The majority of Americans draw their drinking water from publicly-owned water facilities. On the other hand, about 11 percent of the USA population are served by privately-owned water sources and 15 percent have their own water wells.
The United States, as part of their irrigation and drinking water utility infrastructure management plans, has constructed a vast water supply infrastructure system consisting of dams and reservoirs, pumping stations, wells, aqueducts for long distance water distribution, treatment plans, water towers and distribution system reservoirs and miles and miles of water pipelines.
The interesting part is, some of these water utilities USA infrastructure have probably existed before you were born.
If you are thinking that the age of these public utilities is the only major issue concerning the US drinking water, think again.
Here are the different issues surrounding water utilities USA, supply, and sanitation.
You open a tap; water will come out. The majority of Americans have been used to this that they often take water problems for granted.
With the vastness of the Colorado River or Lake Mead, who would expect water shortage? But yes, it is happening.
Impossible as it may seem, Colorado River is drying up in some places. And some researchers claim that Lake Mead, which supplies water to 22 million people, can dry up come 2021.
Now addressing water scarcity through proper infrastructure asset management would involve taking into account this risk, which means citizens also needs to curb the wasteful use of water.
Water scarcity can be attributed to natural causes, but water pollution, in all its devastating effects, is mostly man-made.
According to studies, two-thirds of U.S. estuaries and bays are tainted with nitrogen and phosphorous and reports show that 45 percent of streams, 32 percent of bays, and 47 percent of lakes are severely polluted.
US groundwater has also been found to contain 73 different kinds of pesticides. This means that unless your groundwater is appropriately filtered, you will be drinking chemicals instead of water. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
A backlog of investment in water utilities USA
This has been a quintessential issue – the US seems adamant in frugality when it comes to investment in public water infrastructure.
Although this political decision gave way to government savings before, the long term effects in not capitalizing on infrastructure water utility assets are haunting the USA today.
Americans must be aware of these major issues in our drinking water system first and foremost.
Water utilities USA authorities should consider funding utility infrastructure management that would, among others, consider the steps and factors in the rehabilitation or renewal of public water utilities.
As being practiced in small water utilities in New Mexico, working with a good infrastructure asset management plan will certainly be a situation-changer.
With infrastructure asset management in placed fully on all water utilities USA, you can drink confidently a big gulp for your future. Let’s have a toast for that!