Appreciating the Value of Water
By AMWUA Staff
We all have our morning routines, and although they may differ, we will brush our teeth, brew a fresh pot of coffee or steep a cup of tea, and utilize the bathroom facilities without a second thought. However, imagine if there was no running water at your disposal. No water to drink or wash your hands with. No water to shower, flush the toilet, or do simple chores like washing dishes or laundry. Imagine how different our lives would all be.
Sometimes, we may forget the complex process it takes to ensure that clean water flows out when we turn on the tap. How, when we flush the toilet, all the dirty water goes away. Yet, we usually don't stop to think about the impressive infrastructure and treatment required to make this happen every day. That appreciation and reflection are even more critical this year, as communities across America faced the coronavirus pandemic's public health threat. Water and wastewater systems continued to do their job, 24/7, by keeping the water flowing. Regularly washing our hands is one of the most critical steps in limiting the spread of coronavirus, so what would have happened without access to water to do so?
Imagine a Day Without Water, which takes place this week, is a national education campaign hosted by the Value of Water and highlights how water is essential, invaluable, and in need of investment. It's a day to pause and notice how water systems impact our lives and communities and ensure a sustainable water future for generations to come. What would your day be like if you couldn't turn on the tap and get clean drinking water, or have the ability to wash your hands as needed, or if you flushed the toilet and wastewater didn't go anywhere? In addition to the personal impact, what would happen to health facilities, schools, businesses, or industries that depend on water?
We are fortunate to have clean running water. In contrast, 780 million people worldwide do not have access to an improved water source or the estimated 2.5 billion people who lack access to improved sanitation, which is more than 35 percent of the world's population.
Let's all participate in imagining what it would be like to go one single day without water. It's also an opportunity for everyone to get educated about our local water systems and raise awareness with our elected leaders. Our current way of living relies heavily upon the availability and reliability of clean water. The reality is that without water, we cannot survive, much less thrive, and that is something we don't want to envision. Investing in water is investing in a future where no one will have to imagine a day without water.
For over 50 years, the Arizona Municipal Water Users Association has helped protect our member cities' ability to provide assured, safe, and sustainable water supplies to their communities. For more information, visit www.amwua.org.
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