An Aging Utility Infrastructure is Causing Water Issues In The United States
The United States of America’s aging utility infrastructure is one of the biggest concerns of the country. A considerable number of people lack access to essential sewage treatment. In addition to that, aging pipes also contribute gallons of untreated water to the water supply infrastructure. This adds very high concentrations of calcium and magnesium to the water, adding to the hardness of the water. However, to combat this process, the government needs to invest vast sums of money to develop the facilities, which will take over two decades to furnish clean water. It will be challenging to meet the requirements of people in a few years, but that does not mean you cannot get access to clean drinking water today; keep on reading to find out more.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, there are three types of public water systems, including:
- Community Water Systems: There are approximately 52,000 CWSs serving the majority of U.S. residents who live in apartment buildings, homes, and more.
- Transient Non-Community Water System: TNCWS provide water for places where it's not needed for long periods of time, e.g., campgrounds and gas stations.
- Non-Transient Non-Community Water Systems: NTNCWSs provide water for at least six months a year. There about 85,000 systems serving office buildings, churches, factories, and schools.
It is a known fact that about 4 million Americans lack access to basic sewage treatment. In addition, estimates by the American Society of Civil Engineers indicated that the waterways contain about 950 billion gallons of untreated wastewater. The insufficient capacity and the aging pipes are the major contributors.
Other than the miles-long sewer pipes, the United States of America has main water supplies, which are 1.2-mile-long and equivalent to 26 miles of water mains for the interstate highway.
The American Water Works Association (AWWA) affirms that to change the stormwater plants, sewer lines, and drinking water pipes, the U.S. needs to invest $1 trillion over the next 25 years.
The public is also unaware of the country’s current water infrastructure. For example, reports indicate that the breaks in water mains are caused because they significantly impact the traffic, not because of water loss or the cost needed to regain the water. The public is mainly responsible for such water. Nowadays, they don’t view a need to save it for the future because it is no longer seen as a necessity that requires valuation, conservation, and monitoring.
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