A survey released in June by MWH Global, a global consulting firm focused on water and natural resources, finds that American consumers are concerned about water supply and water infrastructure issues in their communities. Significantly, two-thirds of Americans who responded said that their community should be spending more money to ensure that water infrastructure is well-maintained and properly functioning, and 70 percent said they think their communities will experience water shortages more often in the next 10 years.
“It’s clear that residents across the U.S. are seeing a growing demand for water and heightened concern over the state of their community’s water infrastructure,” said Alan Krause, chairman and chief executive officer of MWH Global. “Development of cost-effective, advanced approaches to water infrastructure represents a key opportunity in many parts of the country. Now is the time for municipalities and utilities to evaluate the state of their infrastructure and consider taking steps to meet the needs of future generations.”
According to the survey:
- More than two-thirds of respondents expect water shortages to occur more often in their communities in the next 10 years
- 66 percent of respondents say that their community should be spending more money to ensure water infrastructure is well-maintained and properly functioning
- 91 percent support the development of additional infrastructure to increase and maintain clean water access
- One in three surveyed think their community’s current water infrastructure will only last less than five more years, and 23 percent think it will last less than a year
- Nearly half of respondents, or 47 percent, are concerned about U.S. communities not having easy, low-cost clean water access
- 97 percent of participants say they believe that their day-to-day life will be negatively impacted if they are forced to cut back on water usage
We have written frequently on the need for improved water supply and water infrastructure funding, and this survey shows that most Americans agree with us. The survey shows clearly that Americans have grave concerns about the condition and longevity of water infrastructure throughout the country and want to see investments in its maintenance increased. So our question is, if Americans consumers so clearly see the need for investments in water infrastructure upgrades and are even willing to help pay to see those upgrades happen, why do our lawmakers seem so shortsighted on this issue? We at CWC will keep fighting to persuade Congress to see water infrastructure funding the way most Americans do: as a critical, near-term and long-term imperative for our communities. Click here to read the results of the MWH survey.