Briefing Paper Highlights Water Infrastructure Projects

May 14, 2015
The paper and nationwide events during Infrastructure Week highlight challenges and opportunities facing water systems

The Value of Water Coalition is highlighting innovative water practices and infrastructure projects across the country during Infrastructure Week 2015, May 11 to 15, through the release of a new briefing paper and nationwide events.

After working around the clock for more than 100 years, the nation’s water infrastructure is aging and failing. In America today, a water main breaks every two minutes. The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates that $4.8 trillion needs to be invested in water infrastructure over the next 20 years to maintain a state of good repair.         

“Building reliable water and wastewater systems for communities across the United States was a crowning achievement of the 20th century. Since then, public and private utilities have been putting people to work to construct, operate and maintain essential infrastructure that Americans rely on daily,” said Radhika Fox, director of the Value of Water Coalition. “Now we are facing water infrastructure challenges as those old systems are over-burdened and worn out, but it is not all bleak. Water leaders are forging innovative solutions to our most pressing water problems. That is the hopeful news from Infrastructure Week—our problems are big, but our capacity for innovation is greater.”

Across the country, water providers as well as water-reliant businesses are rising to the challenge and creating solutions to solve local and national water-centric problems.

In Minneapolis, Dow Water & Process Solutions, a Value of Water Coalition member, will host an event on Friday May 15 with national and local stakeholders to spotlight innovations in addressing water resource and supply challenges and also discuss the growing Twin Cities water technology cluster.

The Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District will host a weeklong series of behind-the-scenes tours of the region's wastewater system for Cleveland-area civic leaders and media. Follow the Flow will trace wastewater's path from the sewer system to Lake Erie, highlighting the tremendous value of investments in clean water infrastructure for the region.

Philadelphia Water and American Water will co-host, with the Economy League of Philadelphia and media partner WHYY, a forum on the state of water infrastructure and the innovative investments in Philadelphia's water system and across the Keystone State.

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission will spotlight how investments in water infrastructure are investments in jobs and the community at the 9th Annual Construction Contractors Breakfast. During the event, partner firms and the SFPUC will announce a $140,000 commitment for funding STEM curriculum at the Willie L. Brown Middle School.

In Chicago, Value of Water Coalition will co-host an event with the Metropolitan Planning Council, the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings, and the Union League of Chicago to discuss how to finance, build, develop and deliver world class infrastructure and services.

In Washington, D.C., representatives from the Value of Water Coalition will meet with members of Congress to discuss the essential service that water infrastructure provides and the need for infrastructure investment.

Source: Value of Water Coalition