Repairing Our Nation’s Water Infrastructure: Dramatic Efforts Needed

The dramatic need for repairing and replacing the nation’s water infrastructure was spotlighted last week across the U.S. by numerous organizations. But, this is not the first time, nor will it be the last!

With the goal of increasing the awareness and recognition of customers and policy officials to the critical need to financially invest in repairing and replacing these systems constantly in the forefront – we have to ask: Why aren’t these leaders acting in some way that provides adequate funding to repair and replace the water infrastructure?

And as the news stories this past week in the media point out – it is not only the the water and wastewater infrastructure that is in critical need of repair, it is also roads, bridges, airport runways.

Which is Most Critical?

I argue that there is no other system is as subjected to the vulnerabilities of various weather events as is the water infrastructure.  We read daily of the tornadoes and damaging rain storms in the southwest; the serious and life-threatening drought in California and western Rockies; and excessive rain amounts causing sewer overflows in the Southeast.

The bottom line is that while many cities and municipalities have aging systems where this investment is vitally needed; there are those who need the investment to provide for daily needs in homes and businesses – and to support the economy. Without water, not only would we suffer from a human aspect – but also economically!

Why Design-Build?

The use of design-build delivery for the water infrastructure, which began in earnest over two decades, is now the preferred method for addressing the multitude of conditions facing the water industry. In addition, the use of design-build delivery methods achieves a far greater success to integrate innovative financing options needed to repair and replace our valuable water infrastructure.  We have to continue to make this message heard to get results.


About Linda Hanifin Bonner, Ph.D, Executive Operations Manager of Water Design-Build Council

With nearly 30 years of experience in the water/wastewater industry, Linda Hanifin Bonner provides a unique blend of organization, governance, and financial management experience to the Water Design-Build Council. Dr. Hanifin Bonner’s professional career has been dedicated to developing pragmatic and strategic oriented approaches through education to the factors influencing water and wastewater industry projects. Originally an environmental planner for Montgomery County, MD, her work over the years has been supporting federal, state, and local government agencies, the engineering community, and private industry.
Topics: Water Infrastructure/Treatment, WDBC Admin.

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