Linder Joins Colleagues On Congressional Water Caucus For An Event To Tackle Nation's Water Infrastructure Crisis
Representative John Linder joined his colleagues on the bi-partisan Water Caucus, with 55 Members including two Senators, to discuss and debate our nation's looming water crisis. This well-attended event featured a number of our country's notable mayors, business executives and financial analysts, including former Mayor of Augusta Bob Young.
Linder stated, "In my mind, and I believe that many of my colleagues will agree with me on this point, we can hardly have a discussion about repairing and restoring our country's infrastructure without discussing and understanding the root causes of our nation's dwindling water resources. We lose trillions of gallons of waterfall each year due to poor water management strategies. America is facing serious problems in maintaining its aging and outdated water systems, and as a result we are fast losing the ability to sustain our limited water resources."
The event pointed out many of our nation's shortcomings when it comes to water storage. For instance, nearly 50% of California's rainfall goes out to the sea unused even once, and approximately 85% of our nation's water is used in agriculture while 40% of that never reaches a plant. Older cities are losing approximately 20%, on average, of the water carried through their pipes each day. New York City loses 36 million gallons per day to leaks in the Delaware Aqueduct, while Philadelphia loses 85 million gallons per day to leaks in city pipes. These were just a few of problems pointed out at the event and according to experts at the Environmental Protection Agency, by 2016, over half of our nation's pipes will be in very poor condition, if not completely unusable.
Carl Wagner, President of Intersections, the organization hosting the event, said, "It is a rare occasion when the top leadership and staff of the Congress join the nation's mayors, business executives and financial analysts in debate and discussion of a critical issue: The Crisis of America's Water Infrastructure. We see examples of failing infrastructure every day and it is time for debate, discussion and the incubation of ideas about solutions to these challenges. Intersections is pleased to be working with the Congressional Water Caucus to bring these issues to light in Congress, to the Administration and to the public. This briefing is the first of four forums that Intersections, a non-profit organization, will undertake with the Congressional Water Caucus."
Wagner followed the theme of infrastructure failures throughout the United States, citing facts such as over 240,000 water mains breaks each year, the city of Buffalo loses 40% of its drinking water to leaks, and that in 1993, over 400,000 people in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, became ill over the span of two weeks and over 100 people died from contaminated drinking water.
Linder concluded, "I paint a grim but accurate picture of the state of our nation's current water resources, but with the right strategy and leadership we can paint a new picture for the future. I agree with my colleagues and the members on the panel today that fixing our nation's water infrastructure presents a unique set of challenges, but I believe that with the proper due diligence now, we can prepare the toolkit necessary to take a good first step toward meeting those challenges head-on."
Linder expressed his enthusiasm for the new four-part series of Congressional Water Caucus events that are being hosted by Intersections. He stated that this new forum will cement the foundation for serious discussion about water supply and management. If you would like to learn more about upcoming Water Caucus events or the Congressional Water Caucus, you may visit http://linder.house.gov or contact 202-225-4272.