Can you imagine a day without water? No showers, no morning coffee, no working toilets — not even water for putting out fires.
For some people, living without water is a daily reality. Yet most of us take for granted that when we turn on the tap, clean, drinkable water will flow out. That’s why Wednesday, Oct. 23 is set aside for the national awareness event, “Imagine a Day Without Water.”
The truth is, our nation’s water infrastructure is aging and failing, and its replacement has gone underfunded for decades. There are many communities that have lived, and are living, without water because they don’t have access to safe and reliable water service. Drought, flooding, and climate change are further stressing already strained water and wastewater systems.
In Allentown, where LCA operates the water and sewer systems under the terms of a lease agreement designed by the city, we need to repair and replace the city’s aging treatment systems, equipment and infrastructure — work that is costly and long overdue. And we’re just one example of a problem that water authorities are grappling with all over the country. Larger municipalities face an even costlier future.
Unfortunately, there’s a disconnect between what Americans value and the actions of the federal, state and local governments. Investment in water infrastructure has not been a priority for decades. The federal government’s investment has declined precipitously, leaving states, localities, water utilities, and people who pay water bills to make up the difference.
It’s time to take water seriously, and it’s time to teach our children about the value of water, too. Get the facts by downloading the Economic Benefits of Investing in Water Infrastructure.
Parents and teachers can download the Pipe Up! PDF for a number of games that will help show kids how water gets to their house; how they can protect water sources; what’s safe to flush, and more.
Let’s all try to Imagine a Day Without Water — so that we don’t have to face the reality.