Sometimes, it is easy to take clean water from homes and businesses for granted. However, could you imagine a day without water? Without safe, reliable water and wastewater services?
What does a day without water actually mean? A day without water means no water comes out of your tap to brush your teeth. There is no water to do laundry or make coffee. When you flush the toilet, nothing happens. Firefighters have no water to put out fires, hospitals would close, and farmers couldn’t water their crops. A single nationwide day without water would put $43.5 billion of economic activity at risk and nearly 2 million jobs in jeopardy. A day without water would be nothing short of a national crisis.
The US Water Alliance is holding its fourth annual Imagine A Day Without Water day to raise awareness and educate America about the value of water. This day is a national education campaign with the goal to engage stakeholders, organization, businesses, public officials, and the general public about how water is essential, invaluable, and needs investment. It will take place October 10, 2018, and includes events, resolutions, social media engagement and more across the country. Last year, over 750 organizations came together to take part in this very important day. This year, we encourage everyone who cares about water to join this national day of action to secure a sustainable future. Participating groups can host events, promote social media campaigns, pass a resolution with your mayor or city council, or do whatever you think best educates and engages the public and stakeholders about how water is essential, invaluable, and worthy of investment. This important day also provides teachers and educators the opportunity to reinforce the importance of water with their students through various activities, conversations, field trips, and events.
This crisis may seem unthinkable to most of us, however, some communities in America know how impossible it is to go a day without water. From man-made tragedies in Flint, Michigan, to water scarcity issues in Central California, to water pollution contamination from hurricane Florence right here in North Carolina. There are millions of Americans living in communities that do not have the infrastructure to provide safe water service, relying on bottled water and septic systems every day. The problems that face our drinking water and wastewater systems are due to many variables. The infrastructure is aging and in need of investment, having gone underfunded for decades. Drought, flooding, and climate change stress water and wastewater systems. Although these regional challenges will require locally-driven solutions, reinvestment in our water must be a national priority.
While we aren’t celebrating a day without water, we are definitely observing this day as an appreciation for the natural water resources available to us in our country! Water scarcity is a public health issue as well as an economic issue. A day without water is undoubtedly a crisis. No community can thrive without water, and every American deserves a safe, reliable, accessible water supply. Let’s demand better, and make sure no American has to “Imagine a Day Without Water” again. As a partner in the Imagine a Day Without Water movement, please check out this video to learn more about how Americans can come together to save our most precious resource.