This summer, we’ve seen a trend of leaders at every level tackling the threats to local water supplies, such as recent epic droughts and devastating floods and storms, through funding of new wastewater infrastructure and water efficiency measures.
In fact, just this morning, Governor Pat Quinn (IL) signed legislation that enables Illinois communities to implement robust climate-smart green infrastructure and water efficiency projects. Just last week, President Obama announced a slate of federal actions, including green infrastructure, to help communities prepare for climate change impacts.
This proactive leadership comes with good reason: beyond facing serious water supply challenges in an era of chronic water scarcity, water infrastructure needs across the nation are estimated to total more than $630B over the next two decades – simply to maintain current levels of service.
But right now, cities and utilities can follow Quinn and Obama’s leads and confront these water supply threats through sensible investments in 21st century water solutions. Today, the Natural Resources Defense Council releases new reports that can help cities do exactly that. These two resourceful roadmaps for communities, state and federal environmental officials, municipal utility, wastewater and water managers, and funding agencies, outline ways to integrate comprehensive urban water efficiency strategies into SRFs and Clean Water Act compliance: