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Water Crisis Requires All Hands On Deck – The Hill

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Today an opinion piece written by Reps. Bob Gibbs (R-Ohio) and Grace Napolitano (D-Calif.) supporting  Water Week 2015 ran in The Hill . During this week-long event, hundreds of water and wastewater professionals gathered in Washington, D.C. to celebrate the national advancements in clean and safe water and meet with federal regulators and members of congress to discuss the value of water.

excerpt:
“Our current water policy in America needs all hands on deck. Federal policymakers should encourage and incentivize private sector capital interested in infrastructure projects, creating a public-private partnership that can offer a long-term, steady return on investment. We need to engage the scientific and academic community to provide research and insight on the most creative and cost-effective solutions to our water challenges.”

The entire piece can be read online.

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Statement by National Association of Water Companies Executive Director Michael Deane in Support of Water Week 2015

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

The National Association of Water Companies is a proud supporter of Water Week 2015 as thought leaders and water professionals from across the country gather in the nation’s capital this week to promote the stewardship and vitality of our most precious natural resource.

Water Week presents a unique opportunity for water industry representatives to connect with local, state and national decision makers. This is a chance for all parties to mutually address topics ranging from legislation and regulations, to conservation and new technologies.

The kind of collaboration made possible through Water Week is essential to solving America’s complex and multifaceted water challenges – from drought, to aging – and sometimes – failing water infrastructure. Long-term solutions can advance from these important conversations between policy makers and the water sector, and it will take all stakeholders working together to close the water infrastructure gap.

We applaud the efforts and commitment of all Water Week attendees. Their presence in Washington, DC will bring much needed attention to the critical work being done – and that which still needs to be done – to ensure clean, safe and reliable water for American communities for generations to come.  – Michael Deane, Executive Director of the National Association of Water Companies

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Connecticut Water launches new feature to protect its customers

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

This afternoon the Connecticut Water Company announced a new feature that will help thwart thieves posing as water utility workers. The feature will give customers peace of mind as they can now receive an e-mail with a photo of the Connecticut Water representative that will be arriving at their door for a scheduled appointment, before the employee arrives.

Eric W. Thornburg, Connecticut Water’s president and CEO, recalled an incident in December 2013 when a customer, a couple, both senior citizens, in Naugatuck was robbed by two men posing as utility workers. He commended the Naugatuck Police Department for their service and counsel throughout this event.

Mr. Thornburg stated, “That incident really troubled us and we decided we needed to do more to give our customers more information to protect themselves from imposters posing as water company employees. Today, I am pleased to announce our new service, as part of our commitment to the safety and security of our customers– Be Sure Before You Open the Door.” Mr. Thornburg explained, “Connecticut Water customers who provide us with an e-mail address will receive a photo of our employee scheduled to perform work at their home before that employee knocks on the door. This is an added safeguard that will help customers protect themselves, their families and their possessions. This initiative will enhance our customers’ safety and security. It will benefit not just our senior customers, but young people, working parents, and busy families alike.” Connecticut Water is leading the industry with this initiative, being the first water utility in Connecticut to offer this and seen as a leader among water utilities across the country with this program.

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Aqua America Promotes Michael Pickel, P.E. to Vice President and Chief Environmental Officer

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Aqua America has announced the promotion of Michael J. Pickel, P.E. to vice president and chief environmental officer for the company.

In this role, Pickel oversees water quality and environmental compliance for all of Aqua’s drinking water and wastewater systems in eight states. Pickel also manages Aqua’s in-house water and wastewater laboratory and the company’s water quality services and water resources engineering departments.

Aqua America’s Chairman and CEO Nicholas DeBenedictis said, “Mike’s strong technical skills and broad experience in environmental policy make him an effective steward of our drinking water and wastewater systems – both for our customers and the environment. His insights and expertise will continue to be invaluable to Aqua and the communities we serve.”

Read the full press release online.

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2015 Southeast Water Infrastructure Summit

Posted on by Carlos

The 2015 Southeast Water Infrastructure Summit will be held in historic Charleston, South Carolina this year, beginning with a memorable welcome reception on Wednesday, April 29, and continuing with discussions all day Thursday, April 30. This is the only event of its type to address critical challenges for the water sector across the region.

When: Wednesday, April 29, 2015 5:00 PM – Thursday, April 30, 2015 8:00 AM

Where: Francis Marion Hotel, 387 King Street, Charleston, South Carolina USA

Please visit www.nawc.org to register.

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EPA’s WaterSense Celebrates Fix a Leak Week

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

watersense_labels_logosEvery year, more than one trillion gallons of water go down the drain because of household leaks. Leaks may increase a water bill by as much as 10 percent.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense program encourages consumers to celebrate the seventh annual Fix a Leak Week, March 16-22, 2015, by finding and fixing water leaks in their homes.

Annually, the average American family could be wasting more than 10,000 gallons of water — enough for 270 loads of laundry — due to easy-to-fix leaks. Since 2006 WaterSense has helped consumers save a cumulative 757 billion gallons of water and over $14.2 billion in water and energy bills.

The full press release is available on the EPA Website

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Value of Water Coalition Announces New Partners, Director and Website

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

Yesterday, the Value of Water Coalition announced it has added 12 new leading public and private sector organizations to its coalition, has brought on a new director and has launched a new website.

The Value of Water Coalition draws attention to our nation’s aging and underfunded water infrastructure, and educates on the fundamental importance of water to the economic, environmental and community well-being of America.

“In a few days, we will celebrate the United Nation’s World Water Day, which is a great reminder of how exceptional American water and wastewater service is. The public and private utilities that ensure clean, safe, reliable water to and from homes and businesses across the country are nothing short of remarkable. But utilities, as well as the systems and infrastructure they manage, are taken for granted. While water is priceless, we undervalue it in the United States,” said Radhika Fox, the new director of the Value of Water Coalition.

The founding members of the Value of Water Coalition are: American Water, American Water Works Association, Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies, CH2M HILL, MWH Global, National Association of Clean Water Agencies, National Association of Water Companies, United Water, U.S. Water Alliance, Veolia, Water Environment Federation and Xylem.

Today, the founding members are joined by two leading private sector companies: Dow Chemical Company and Black & Veatch. Additionally, major public utilities, which are on the front lines of delivering essential water and wastewater service to millions of people, have joined the coalition. New public utility partners include: Alexandria Renew Enterprises, Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority, DC Water, Hampton Roads Sanitation District, Kansas City Water Services, Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati, Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, Philadelphia Water Department and San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.

Read the full release online.

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Webinar: Understanding and Addressing Business Exposure to Water-Related Risks

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

On March 31 3pm ET the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Corporate Citizenship Center is hosting a webinar on how companies can leverage tools to better understand and address their exposure to water risk. During this one hour webinar, you will hear from Lindsay Bass, Manager, Water Stewardship, WWF-US; Libby Bernick, Senior Vice President, Trucost-North America; and Emilio Tenuta, Vice President, Corporate Sustainability, Ecolab, to discuss two methodologies in particular: the WWF Water Risk Filter, and the Water Risk Monetizer. You’ll learn how these tools can be used to understand business exposure to environmental related risk, and how to leverage the results to build the business case and drive collective action. Click here to learn more and register.

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Not a Drop to Drink – America’s Very Real Water Crisis

Posted on by Marybeth Leongini

It’s no secret that there are major upgrades needed to our water infrastructure. Check out this infographic made by Column Five to see how serious America’s water crisis really is.

water-conservation-infographic

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Activist critics of private water once again prove they are out of touch

Posted on by Michael

Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter’s statement in response to the Administration’s new water infrastructure proposals is a sad reminder that the only thing groups like Food & Water Watch contribute to the national effort to provide safe, reliable and affordable drinking water and wastewater services is one simple word: “no.”

Local officials across the country are seeking innovative solutions to the water infrastructure and management challenges they face. With their announcement on Friday, the White House and the EPA have affirmed the vital role that private sector capital and expertise have in improving our nation’s water and wastewater systems. Importantly, the Administration’s proposals encourage strong collaboration between the public and private sector in meeting our country’s substantial water infrastructure challenges.

The Administration is to be commended, not criticized, for moving to ensure community leaders have the tools they need to deliver the service and value their residents expect from their local water system. Although Hauter calls the Administration’s proposals “misguided,” in reality it is activist organizations like Food & Water Watch that are out of touch.

Despite a strong affirmation by the president and EPA, radical critics of all things private refuse to acknowledge any role for the private sector in meeting our water challenges. For example, the Food & Water Watch statement repeats vague, tired aspersions about price tags and environmental threats when, in fact, thousands of successful public-private partnerships deliver safe water and true value to tens of millions of Americans every day.

Food & Water Watch and its allies say they are looking out for the American people, but in reality, they are just seeking to deny local communities an important option for meeting water and wastewater needs.

While Food & Water Watch continues to say “no” to the local officials considering public-private partnerships, the National Association of Water Companies will work with public officials – from the Administration to municipal utility managers – to ensure every community in America has the information and tools they need to deliver safe and affordable water. And the thousands of water professionals of NAWC member companies will, as always, be on the streets and in the treatment plants protecting their neighbors’ public health, serving as stewards of the environment and strengthening their local economy.

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