Tapping Into The Value Of Water
By Kevin Westerling, editor, Water Online
By educating key stakeholders on the true value of water, utilities can better position themselves to secure much-needed and long-overdue funding.
The value of water is a study in contrasts: It is both blatantly obvious (try living without it for a day) and easily overlooked. In the United States, potable water has been so cheap and readily available that few consumers consider the process that brings it to their spigot. The nation’s crumbling distribution system, in particular, is out of sight/out of mind — until it’s out of service.
Clearly, with respect to water, public perception is not reality. Those in the industry realize that high-quality water that adheres to today’s strict regulatory standards is not easily produced and certainly not cheap. On the contrary, the cost is rising to the point of unsustainability. Cost drivers include the aforementioned failing infrastructure and regulations but also population growth and water scarcity.