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2007 State of the Industry Report -- Setting the Course for a Brighter Future (PDF)

  • Author(s): Mann, John; Runge, Jon
  • Publications: Journal - American Water Works Association
  • Issue Date: October 2007
  • Volume / Number: 99, Number 10
  • Page(s): 58-68
  • DOI:
  • Product Number: JAW_0065233
Full Text: pdf

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Abstract

The State of the Industry (SOTI) survey, now in its fourth year, has compiled a wealth of trending data on the water industry. These data, reflecting input from utility representatives, service providers, and other professionals across the United States and Canada, help illuminate the water industry's current and future concerns. The 2007 survey results indicated that the industry workforce and the sustainability of its human resources was a prime concern for many respondents. Although the workforce had already established a profile as a long-term concern, this year the category rose to the fifth spot on the list of near-term critical issues. By highlighting current and emerging concerns as well as inadequately addressed issues, the SOTI survey helps ensure that water professionals have the tools and strategies they need in order to meet the challenges ahead. The top five critical issues identified by the survey include: regulatory factors including concerns about the scientific basis for new regulations and the value of new regulations relative to their cost; source water supply and protection centering on ensuring adequate quantities of treatable water supplies for growing needs and protecting water sources; business factors such as the expense and financing of infrastructure replacement and the imbalance between the cost of delivering quality water service and the rates that can be charged; aging water supply infrastructure, the prospect of its failure, cross-connection concerns, water leakage and accounting, and water storage; and, workforce issues such as replacement of aging workers, difficulty in recruiting qualified new or replacement workers, and overall training of the workforce to meet increasing sophistication in water operations.

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