For more than 40 years, water professionals and the communities they serve have celebrated Drinking Water Week. It is an opportunity to recognize the vital role water plays in our daily lives. We rely on it for drinking, cleaning, cooking, bathing and now more than ever, we are keenly aware of the value of this most precious resource and its support of public health. Preventing the spread of COVID-19 depends on handwashing and social distancing; two things made possible in part by tap water and the infrastructure systems maintained by our region's water and wastewater utilities.
Our water infrastructure and its operators ensure the safe supply of water to our homes and businesses, to our hospitals and grocery stores. Without this critical service, even the most essential operations would cease to function. “Our water systems and the people behind them are working for us 24 hours a day, every day of the year. We routinely drive over an intricate maze of underground pipes delivering water right to our homes and businesses without realizing it,” said Katie Cullipher, who heads up the askHRgreen.org public awareness and education campaign. “It is a system made up of miles of unseen pipes, but the essential service it provides our communities should never be overlooked.”
As we recognize Drinking Water Week 2020, we raise a glass to all the water professionals behind the scenes who bring us this life-sustaining service. They are wearing protective equipment, practicing social distancing, dialed in remotely, implementing extra health and safety precautions, and working tirelessly to ensure the continuity of service we have always relied on for our well-being. Water is the lifeblood of our communities and in this time of great uncertainty for our nation and our world, we can rest assured knowing that tap water is always there for us when we need it.