Arizona Water Professionals: Dedicated to Protecting, Managing and Delivering an Essential Service
By AMWUA Staff
Arizona residents certainly know the value of water. Yet it is easy to forget the complex process and the extensive team of people it takes to get safe and secure water to our tap. And the important role all water professionals play has never been more evident than it is now.
Professionals in the water industry understand that protecting and managing Arizona’s water supplies are essential to our State’s future, which requires an educated and well-trained workforce. These professionals include the operators of water and wastewater treatment systems and the technicians who maintain and repair the thousands of miles of water lines daily. Running a water utility also requires the expertise of engineers, hydrologists, biologists, along with experts on water policy, economics, business administration, law, environmental sciences, and communications. This diverse group works together daily utilizing policy and economics, science and engineering, muscle and skill, to create an essential team that enables water to be delivered into your home 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
In total, the ten AMWUA cities work diligently to provide water to 3.5 million people in the Valley. They have a diverse supply of water sources including the Salt and Verde Rivers, Colorado River, reclaimed water, unused water stored underground, and groundwater. However, having these water supplies is only the start. The cities then have the responsibility to take that water, treat it to Federal drinking standards, move it through miles of pipe, and deliver it safely to homes, schools, local businesses, and vital medical facilities.
There is no doubt that it takes a very talented, dedicated team of people to ensure operations run smoothly. The ten AMWUA cities employ more than 2,500 water professionals, all of which are critical to the delivery of water to your tap. Those professionals in your city are always there when you need them. Whether it’s to answer your questions about water, quality testing, water rates, and billing, the efficient use of water, free water conservation classes, water conservation rebates, or to fix water leaks in the street.
During this time, local water providers are also taking extra precautions to protect the health and safety of their employees to ensure regular operation of treatment plants and all other necessary functions continue without interruption. Each city has a contingency plan in place to protect staff. They have closed their facilities to the public. And many employees are working remotely to reduce contact among operational staff.
Now more than ever we are reminded of how essential these dedicated water professionals are to providing safe and reliable water and operating and maintaining water distribution and wastewater collection systems. Having safe and reliable water is critical during normal times. It is even more vital during an emergency, disaster, or the current situation we face. The AMWUA cities’ water professionals are ready to meet whatever test they face.
Arizona Water Professionals Appreciation Week is a perfect time to recognize all those men and women of water, their commitment, passion, and dedication. Their dedication is appreciated every day of the year, and especially during challenging times when we understand how essential water is to our overall health.
The second annual Arizona Water Professionals Appreciation Week is being held as a virtual event this week (April 12-19). This recognition was initiated to recognize water professionals’ role in clean and sustainable water supplies, draw attention to career opportunities in the water industry, and increase awareness of Arizona’s unique water resources. This is an important effort to show appreciation to the men and women who are dedicated to delivering water.
For over 50 years, Arizona Municipal Water Users Association has worked to protect our member cities’ ability to provide assured, safe and sustainable water supplies to their communities. For more water information visit www.amwua.org.
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