Water infrastructure has become a worldwide problem, as many countries are still transporting the essential component of life through aging piping systems. Replacing this infrastructure in the near future is a necessity to ensure the human right to clean water.
Water Infrastructure in the United States
When the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) conducted their Report Card for American Infrastructure in 2013, they gave the drinking water system a D+ rating, basing their harsh grade off the estimated annual 240,000 water breaks in the United States. These plentiful breaks are the byproduct of the century old pipe infrastructure in many urban areas of the country.
Unfortunately, according to ANSI-accredited standards developing organization American Water Works Association (AWWA), it could cost up to $1 trillion to replace all of the major water infrastructure systems in the United States, a staggering amount that is partially responsible for little action being taken to solve this issue. However, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) has published a document NEMA EWS 1-2016 - Increasing Energy Efficiency in Urban Water Systems: Summary Report (which can be downloaded free from the ANSI Webstore) that collected data from a wide range of literature to find areas in which urban water suppliers could save energy.
Ultimately, they discovered that there are many opportunities for water suppliers to save energy, and thus, money. With the savings that the suppliers would maintain while following the best energy management practices, they could ease the process of replacing the withering infrastructure.
NEMA EWS 1-2016 has several companion documents that help it address the issue of energy use for urban water suppliers. The first of these is NEMA EWS 1.3-2016 - Glossary of Terms Used in the Water Sector, which exists to help any compliant users understand the content of these documents.
The other two companion documents serve as what would be the last two sections of the NEMA EWS 1 standard. NEMA EWS 1.1-2016 - Market Potential for Electricity Efficiency in Urban Water Systems NEMA EWS 1.2-2016 - Use of Performance Contracts for Advancing Efficiency in Water Infrastructure
Germany has invested €100 billionbest water infrastructure in western Europeits stagnating population
International challenges for overcoming the current water infrastructure problems are myriad, but there is a clear solution for almost all of them: investment. Places with aging infrastructure need the finances to replace the century-old water delivery systems, and those that need to build upon their infrastructure need the money to provide water security for their rising populations. Of course, the other major problem with this is determining where exactly this money is going to come from. Finding ways to save energy and costs during water delivery and management is a great way to help fund this.
Download NEMA EWS 1-2016 - Increasing Energy Efficiency in Urban Water Systems: Summary Report and NEMA EWS 1.3-2016 - Glossary of Terms Used in the Water Sector from the ANSI Webstore.