The vital role water plays in our lives

Published Oct 17, 2023

Water is essential to all aspects of our communities. Water sustains our families’ daily activities and supports economic productivity in the Valley. It ultimately affects everything and everyone. Water truly is the single most crucial resource in our lives. But imagine if your city could no longer deliver water to you and your family. Life would look drastically different.

That is precisely how people are being challenged this week as the Value of Water Campaign hosts Imagine A Day Without Water . In its ninth year, the day of action is held to heighten awareness about the value of water in our daily lives. It is also a time to highlight the importance of funding and support for water providers across the United States so they can continue to deliver water to ensure health, safety, and overall survival.

The fact is that without cities and the utilities that provide us with access to water, we would not be left with much. Hospitals and medical facilities would be unsanitary and unsafe without clean and safe running water. Keeping our homes clean would be challenging without running water to easily wash anything, such as dirty dishes or clothes, elevating the risk of sickness and disease. Restaurants could not prepare any meals without access to running water to cook, clean, or keep food sanitary. Firefighters could not do their jobs without operating fire hydrants, and fires would be left to burn. Parks, recreational, and athletic fields would be barren, dry, and, for the most part, unusable. Office buildings, warehouses, schools, and academic institutions would not function correctly or be safe without the availability of water.

Additionally, cooling towers, which are critical for making our workplaces and other frequented venues livable during our long summers, would be unable to operate. In industry, machinery relies on water to keep temperatures cool and to keep the manufacturing process going. Many people don’t realize that almost every manufactured product uses water during some part of the production process for fabricating, washing, diluting, cooling, or transporting a product.

On a grand scale, generating electrical power also makes use of water to cool equipment and to push the turbines that are the heart of the process that produces electricity, including the power created by the Palo Verde Nuclear Power Plant that utilizes water provided by the Valley cities. Without power and water distributed throughout our communities, our modern world would be unrecognizable, and life here in the arid desert with extreme heat would be nearly impossible or survivable.

Imagining a Day Without Water is an important reminder of water's critical role in our lives, communities, health and safety, and human survival. It is also a reality check as we discuss our changing climate, prolonged droughts, and water shortages impacting millions of people. Our current way of living relies heavily upon the availability and reliability of clean water. That is why the ten AMWUA cities, which provide water to 3.7 million people, take the responsibility to deliver safe and reliable water to all areas of our communities very seriously.

Ultimately, we need to appreciate the value of water and its significant role in our lives. Water is the lifeline of our communities, and continued investment in our water and wastewater infrastructure is critical so water providers can keep the water flowing, and we don’t ever have to learn firsthand what it's like to live even one day without water.

To print or save this week's blog, a PDF version is available HERE .

For over 50 years, the Arizona Municipal Water Users Association has helped protect our member cities' ability to provide their communities with assured, safe, and sustainable water supplies. For more information, visit .