Essential for all life and survival on this planet, water is one of our most precious resources and is vital for human needs, both in our natural and built environments. Across the globe, we are facing more frequent and severe droughts, increased fire risk, decreased snowpack, and escalating pressure on the natural systems that generate water supply for our communities. A recently released joint report by the United Nations and the World Bank estimates that 40 percent of the world’s population is affected by water scarcity, placing food security, energy sustainability, and public health at risk.
What can be done?
We can achieve water security, and ecological integrity, by investing in and growing sustainable approaches, rather than falling into crisis-driven decision making. In the United States, local decision makers hold the keys to our water future. At least 85% of water infrastructure spending occurs at the community level, and 87% of people nationwide are served by public water utilities. While Federal and State agencies have a vital role – the policies, strategies and priorities established by local leaders have the power to fundamentally shift how we think about and use water. By treating all water in communities – drinking water, stormwater, wastewater – as part of a unified and integrated system (“One Water”), we can design methods of providing water to urban areas with using up or destroying water resources, while also anticipating and preparing for the need to adapt and have a mechanism to respond to changing conditions.
How WaterNow Alliance is meeting the challenge:
WaterNow Alliance brings a clear path to action to fix our water infrastructure. WaterNow Alliance is a forum for local water leaders in the U.S. who want to champion sustainable, affordable and climate resilient water strategies. Working with businesses, community leaders, and water and finance experts, WaterNow Alliance advances innovation, breaks down barriers, and drives change. WaterNow Alliance strategies include:
- Engaging WaterNow’s network of decision-makers and connecting them to ideas, resources and one another.
- Championing a sustainable water future by eliminating barriers and advancing solutions through policy change.
- Demonstrating success by showcasing strategies that work and that communities can replicate and scale.