The National coverage of Flint Michigan’s water crisis has brought the fundamental infrastructure challenges of overburdened water facilities to the forefront of city council agendas nationwide, a change from its usual absence of attention that has kept systems underfinanced and in the background. While Capital Improvement budgets and plans are commonplace among local government finance departments, adequate investment in water and sewer infrastructure has consistently lagged behind funding for other municipal projects and the useful life of existing pipes and plants continues to be pushed past its limits. Recent estimates by the American Society of Civil Engineers reports that drinking water infrastructure is typically more than 100 years old and in need of replacement across the nation. System expansions and upgrades are expensive, and according to the Congressional Budget Office, states and localities cover more than three-quarters of all public spending on water infrastructure. Flint has offered the lesson that waiting until it’s too late is even more costly.
A silver lining from the Flint crisis is that many local governments are taking a hard look at their aged infrastructure in advance of any major issues or system failures. To aid in the identification of leaky pipes, local governments are realizing they need to have better measures to test, troubleshoot and ensure their water system meets all regulations and standards. One option being utilized is Smart Metering. Smart meters offer the tools to collect the insight needed into utility operations and customer consumption that will help drive decision-making and improve asset management. The hardest step for any smart metering project is the first step, and MeterSYS can help by providing a custom implementation strategy tailored to your public water system that details the costs and benefits of smart metering. For more information, please contact our team of professionals by email or visit our website at www.metersys.com.