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Most of the water infrastructure of the US were constructed in late 1940s and therefore they are old. Aging water utilities are weak and vulnerable to leaks and failures, which may be caused by natural and mad-made stimuli.
Considering that majority of the water pipes in the US were embedded at the close of World War II, then a considerable percentage of these are nearing the end of their useful life.
The benchmark report of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2002 published that some water systems lose 60% of water due to pipe leaks. According to the report many cities are experiencing water delivery loses.
This problem has not been addressed totally for some technical and financial reasons. The aging water utilities of the US presents threat to the community’s health and lifestyle.
Leakages through the pipe walls and joints are sources of contamination. Also, the force of leaking water may cause soil erosion or block water delivery.
Just imagine the impact of contaminated water to health. Also, the loss of water affects industries and business operations. When water supply is diminished due to old and defective water conduits, households are gravely affected in terms of domestic use such as cooking, gardening and preparing for going to school or offices.
What adds to the problem is the lack of infrastructure management plan. As the days, months and years go by, without intervention soon, the aging water utilities will deteriorate from “very poor” to “failure” condition. If failure happens, city councils and local governments will be in pandemonium trying to solve the causes and effects of water infrastructure failure.
The cost of restoring old water infrastructure into good condition is high. Implementing a substantial and aggressive intervention to resuscitate an old and dying water system is very expensive. Thus, coming up with a plan is one good strategy that utility administrators and infrastructure management engineers may consider doing.
Leaders who are not convinced of the importance of making an infrastructure asset management plan have the tendency to only look at the cost of making one. We cannot blame them for perceiving making an asset management strategy as merely an expensive exercise because times are hard and the negative economic situation is far from over.
Yes, it may involve expense but they should also consider that instituting a system that would make water asset management sustainable in decades to come is a wise venture.
EPA in their “The Clean Water and Drinking Water Infrastructure Gap Analysis in 2002” and GAO (General Accounting Office) in their “Water Infrastructure” study mention the absence of better water asset management in water utilities operation and maintenance.
The state or the local governments could opt to invest on decision-making software and engage consultants to guide them in planning and executing a working asset management plan. Because there are many available outstanding asset management software programs, evaluating what would work best for the current situation is necessary.
This may entail searching for qualified and experienced professionals who could expertly guide through the local asset managers in creating and implementing the water infrastructure management plan of action.
It might cost a considerable amount of money but the primary benefit of implementing solutions to aging water utilities based on an infrastructure asset management plan< is the judicious use of financial resources of the US.
Inframanage has an expert infrastructure management team, which experiences and expertise in New Zealand asset management setting are quite applicable to the US situation.
Photo Source: RT.COM
Recently, I read the article “Optimised Decision Making, IDS and the Deighton Water Model – An Introduction” which sparked my attention.
Published on the Inframanage.com site, the article includes a video that demonstrates the Deighton Water Model and the resource persons talked about the implication to finance and infrastructure management.
As a civil engineering graduate, this is very important learning resource for future infrastructure asset managers.
Watching the video made me wished I had learned about this in college. The learning Deighton Water Model presents could be applied not only in the context of asset management.
I was smiling thinking about using it for evangelism.
Thinking about CPU’s many assets, I’m sure nuggets of wisdom on optimized decision making would be very helpful.
I appeal for professors to recommend this learning resource to your students.
Are you a leader, engineer, manager, realtor, development planning specialist, investor?
Are you engaged in public works, infrastructure management and development planning?
Please take time to watch the short “Deighton Water Model” demonstration video.
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I’m sure dairy products, meat and wine would be on top of the list when you think about New Zealand, not to mention sheep, deer and cows.
For its scenic sites from the North Island to South Island, New Zealand has become the world’s popular tourist destination.
The location shooting of popular movies like “Lord of the Rings” and the “Hobbit” boosted the country’s popularity.
New Zealand is readily identified with rugby, sailing, shot put, and rowing. The country won medals in international competitions on these sports events.
These are just some of the popular things people around the world might say or think about New Zealand.
Do you know there is more to New Zealand than the popular perceptions mentioned above?
Being located far from the rest of the nations of the world except Australia, New Zealand is an innovative nation in many learning areas. Creativity and inventiveness is not limited to agriculture, manufacturing and education only.
Infrastructure management is one area where the Kiwis excel in terms of ideas and best practices. The country has institutionalised infrastructure management planning in her laws since 1990.
This paved way for generating and pioneering best practices and development of infrastructure management techniques.
As we all know, infrastructure has important role in the economic development of a country; service supports the constituents and society.
Thus, its management needs to be strategically planned, maintenance and risks management programs faithfully implemented, alongside wise allocation of fiscal and logistical resources of local and national government units.
As a nation established much later than other nations in America and Europe, New Zealand found herself developing best practices in infrastructure construction and management based on lessons learned from older developed countries.
NZ Asset Management Support, in partnership with asset management organisations and experts of Australia and NZ, created the International Infrastructure Management Manual. This is to ensure that best practices and standards are institutionalized and implemented among partner countries.