AWWA celebrates World Water Day with focus on water-related disasters

The American Water Works Association (AWWA) joined the World Health Organization in the global celebration of World Water Day, observed March 22, 2004.

DENVER, Colo., March 24, 2004 -- The American Water Works Association (AWWA) joined the World Health Organization in the global celebration of World Water Day, observed March 22, 2004.

The theme of World Water Day 2004 was "Water and Disasters," providing a necessary emphasis on the need for drinking water systems that are designed and built to withstand natural disasters as well as conflict.

Established in 1881, AWWA is the oldest and largest nonprofit scientific and educational organization dedicated to safe drinking water in North America. AWWA has over 57,000 members worldwide and its 4,700 utility members serve 80 percent of America's population.

"Safe drinking water is critical to public health and welfare," said Jack Hoffbuhr, AWWA executive director. "When a water system becomes impaired, public health is placed at risk as drinking water supplies are threatened in addition to sanitation and hygiene."

Planning ahead for disaster management can help avoid devastating consequences in the event of a natural disaster. World Water Day 2004 seeks to create awareness of the impact a water-related disaster can have upon a region, and encourage the implementation of plans and programs to help minimize the negative effects.

"AWWA is committed to providing the knowledge and resources necessary for water utilities to provide safe and secure drinking water, and to have the capability to respond to natural disasters," concluded Hoffbuhr.

More information on World Water Day 2004 can be found online at www.waterday2004.org

AWWA is the authoritative resource for knowledge, information and advocacy to improve the quality and supply of drinking water in North America and beyond. AWWA is the largest organization of water professionals in the world. AWWA advances public health, safety and welfare by uniting the efforts of the full spectrum of the drinking water community.

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