The BNL online tool offers water and wastewater utilities the opportunity to forecast the cost of their water and wastewater pipe repair and replacement needs. It provides cost estimates and financial deferrals based on inputted data by a utility and is broken down by pipe size or material. Twenty-nine graphical outputs are generated to create a profile that is reflective of a community’s unique infrastructure needs.
The tool comes on the heels of last week’s announcement that Congress will appropriate an additional $10 million for the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA). The additional amount brings WIFIA funding this year to $30 million, which can leverage an estimated $1.5 billion in federal loans.
Both the BNL tool and WIFIA come at a critical time for the water sector. According to AWWA’s Buried No Longer report, repairing and replacing crumbling drinking water infrastructure will cost at least $1 trillion over the next 25 years because of aging water pipes.
Additionally, AWWA’s 2017 State of the Water Industry lists replacing and repairing deteriorating water infrastructure as the leading concern among surveyed water utilities in North America.
“Our Buried No Longer tool and continued work on WIFIA demonstrates AWWA is committed to helping water utilities overcome water infrastructure challenges in their communities,” said Tracy Mehan, AWWA Executive Director of Government Affairs.
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Established in 1881, the American Water Works Association is the largest nonprofit, scientific and educational association dedicated to managing and treating water, the world’s most important resource. With approximately 50,000 members, AWWA provides solutions to improve public health, protect the environment, strengthen the economy and enhance our quality of life.