Water Supply Infrastructure Needs: The Evolving Picture

by Jerome B. Gilbert, East Bay Municipal Utilities, District, Oakland, CA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Water Forum '86: World Water Issues in Evolution


Based on the findings from AWWA surveys conducted in 1983 and 1985, it appears that the earlier conclusion that the needs of the nation's water systems can be met by the local water system is still valid. Only in the special cases where local conditions prevent communities from raising rates to pay for replacement due to high unemployment, population reductions, or deteriorating tax bases should there be the need for state or federal assistance. The maintenance of the infrastructure is an on-going process. Capital needs must be determined on a long term basis and implemented annually. A program of preventive maintenance, adequate capital replacement and improvement, and a reasonable rate structure that is sufficient to pay for the costs of the water systems will always be necessary. Among the efforts being made at East Bay Municipal Utilities District to achieve these goals are: the establishment of a Water Conservation and Development Fund to encourage user conservation and to provide for future water supply needs; an agressive preventive maintenance and replacement program funded through rates; and a computerized leak detection program that accomplishes a complete scanning of the distribution system within four years.

Subject Headings: Water conservation | Water supply systems | Municipal water | Water treatment plants | Maintenance | Federal government | Employment | Deterioration

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