Failure to Act: The Economic Impact of Current Investment Trends in Water and Wastewater Treatment Infrastructure

Source: American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), 2011

The latest report shows that our nation’s drinking water and wastewater infrastructure is aging and failing, and that investment is not keeping up the need. The focus of this report is on the pipes, treatment plants, pumping stations, and other infrastructure that make up the nation’s public drinking-water and wastewater systems. Most public water and wastewater systems are owned and operated by local or regional government agencies. Drinking-water systems may also be privately owned and operated under contract with public agencies. In accordance with the definitions used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in the pages that
follow we consider both types of systems to be “public.” Moreover, this report analyzes two types of infrastructure needs:
1. building new infrastructure to service increasing populations and expanded economic activity; and
2. maintaining or rebuilding existing infrastructure that needs repair or
replacement.

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