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Old infrastructure and need for capital are the main challenges that the U.S. water industry faces, according to a new report by consultancy WeiserMazars LLP. In its 2014 U.S. Water Industry Outlook, the company revealed that as many as 95 percent of water industry representatives named aging facilities and infrastructure as one of the most significant challenges facing the water industry.
Interestingly, the most challenging aspects of the industry have remained unchanged since 2012, when the previous report was released. Aging plant workers and management were also a cause for significant concern, the report found.
Along with issues that the Outlook traditionally examines, such as operations, financial results and trends, this year's report also featured new topics. Respondents were polled on service quality, pricing and non-revenue water, and were asked to assess the opportunities created for growth and development. The sample of respondents included 67 percent representing private companies and 18 percent from public companies. More than eight in 10 of the interviewees were in company management, including 75 percent executives and 11 percent middle management.
Jerome Devillers, head of water infrastructure/project financing at WeiserMazars, explained that the aim of this year's Outlook was to examine how the U.S. water industry has progressed over the past two years. The fact that concerns remained unchanged over the period should serve as a wake-up call for the industry, he added.