This editorial letter originally appeared in WWD October 2020 issue as "No Water, Big Problem."
I have previously referenced my experience in my first apartment — a small rental home — during my first job out of college in which a pipe burst and I spent a couple days without water. It was an eye-opening experience, and thankfully my boss at the time offered for me to shower and brush my teeth at his home.
October 21 is Imagine A Day Without Water, a day that asks everyone to imagine an experience like mine, and how it would impact their day. It is an exercise that highlights the value of water and its importance not only on a granular level — cooking, cleaning, recreation — but also on an economic and macro level. A recent report from the US Water Alliance, which manages the value of water campaign, and the American Society of Civil Engineers showcased just how intricately linked the economy is with clean water access and affordability. And this year water is even more important than ever. Without clean water access, there would be little or no limit to the spread of the coronavirus.
For the past two years, Water & Wastes Digest, Water Quality Products and Storm Water Solutions — multimedia brands comprising the Scranton Gillette Communications Water Group — have taken part in Imagine a Day Without Water by sharing personal stories and those of others. This year, we are using our podcast, Talking Under Water, to share interviews about water’s value and to highlight three critical issues we see as important for the future of water in the U.S.: water access, water affordability and water equity.
These episodes have been released each Friday this month, the first of which is an interview with Radhika Fox, U.S. Water Alliance CEO. She talked with myself, Lauren Del Ciello (WQP) and Katie Johns (SWS) about how the coronavirus pandemic impacted the US Water Alliance and the One Water movement, as well as what water access, affordability and equity mean and why they are important terms for utilities to keep in mind.
Listen to all the episodes on wwdmag.com/podcast as well as our backlog of episodes dating to April 2018. We’re very excited to bring this special series to you for October, and we hope you’ll find it as informative and inspiring as we have.