AWWA officially releases 2015 State of the Water Industry Report
The American Water Works Association has officially released its 2015 State of the Water Industry Report.
DENVER, CO, June 4, 2015 -- The American Water Works Association (AWWA), the largest nonprofit, scientific and educational association dedicated to managing and treating water, has officially released its 2015 State of the Water Industry Report. According to the research, the state of water and wastewater infrastructure and how to finance capital improvements continue to top the list of concerns facing water professionals throughout North America.
Long-term water supply availability and understanding the value of water systems and resources also are included as top-five issues in the report. It notes that the issues of water scarcity and infrastructure financing converge for many utilities. Forty-three percent of utility respondents reported that their total water sales are declining, while 29 percent reported that their total water sales were flat or that little has changed in the last decade.
With nearly three of four utilities using the same or less water -- largely because of more efficient fixtures and irrigation systems along with rate structures and education programs that encourage water conservation -- an interesting question emerges: How will utilities finance impending infrastructure needs as well as increasing day-to-day operating costs with the same or less amount of water flowing through the meters?
Utility employee respondents reported that they would attempt to cover costs through a variety of means, including increasing fixed fees within their consumption-based rate structures, changing growth-related fees, shifting rate designs to increasing block-rate structure, and increasing financial reserves.
Available free for download on AWWA's website (here), the report was published in preparation for the organization's 134th Annual Conference & Exposition (ACE15), taking place June 7-10 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif (see: "Anaheim Hosts Annual Water Expo"). Dr. Kenneth Mercer, PhD., author of the report and AWWA senior manager of technical and research programs, will provide insights into the research at the ACE15 session, "Leadership, Management, and Collaboration: Solutions to Water Industry Challenges," on Tuesday, June 9, at 9 a.m.
Established in 1881, the American Water Works Association is the largest nonprofit, scientific and educational association dedicated to managing and treating water, the world’s most important resource. With approximately 50,000 members, AWWA provides solutions to improve public health, protect the environment, strengthen the economy and enhance our quality of life. For more information, visit www.awwa.org.