Facing a diverse array of headwinds to their operations, U.S. water industry leaders are looking to accelerate innovation in strategy, operations and capital planning by harnessing digital assets and data analytics, Black & Veatch’s newly released Strategic Directions: Water Report finds
As energy costs continue to rise and more states adopt regulatory incentives and disincentives that drive large-scale sustainability and efficiency efforts, it is expected that utilities will become more aggressive in their approach to managing energy.
In an era when climate change, organizational capacity constraints, funding challenges and limited public support continue to test the resilience of a community's stormwater system, images of flooded neighborhoods and arterial streets turned into rivers highlight the urgency for a strategic vision and alternative approaches to stormwater management service delivery.
Water and energy systems long have been intrinsically intertwined, given electricity's entrenchment as one of a water or wastewater utility's biggest expenditures. But as water suppliers and wastewater service providers grapple with ways to reduce power costs, advance toward "green" energy and participate in the electric industry evolution, there's talk of "ner energy."
In the water industry, data is driving the discussion. To understand what this means requires a story about motor oil.
For decades, car manufacturers recommended that vehicles have their engine oil changed at least every 3,000 miles without fail. This was never proven practical, given that such decisions should be based on individual driving style, the conditions and climate – even the type of oil used. But these real-world conditions don't tend to factor into the carmaker's original guidelines.
In 2018, Cape Town residents stared down "Day Zero," the moment when the water system – jeopardized by the combination of population growth, drought cycles, aging infrastructure and deferred system improvements – was predicted to literally run dry. Fortunately, citizens rallied by heeding the conservation calls, and the skies opened. A historic crisis was averted for its more than 3 million residents. But the lessons lingers on: Government and water industry leaders the world over are reconsidering how climate impacts and deferred maintenance threaten the resilience of our supply.