Delivering reliable, high-quality water requires a delicate balance between water supplies and customer demands.
While water managers continually strive to maintain this supply-and-demand balance through long-term water resource planning and demand management, new challenges exist due to the impacts of climate change, putting the world's water resources at risk.
The Water Utility Climate Alliance (WUCA) is dedicated to enhancing climate change research and improving water management decision-making to ensure that water utilities will be positioned to respond to climate change and protect our water supplies.
WUCA releases Leading Practices in Climate Adaptation
The collection of leading practices in climate adaptation covers a suite of climate adaptation actions and is intended to broadly promote collaborative learning. Each practice in the collection is explained and supported by concrete examples, and is drawn from WUCA work products and WUCA members' experiences.
"It's Hot, and Getting Hotter" report released
Last week WUCA released a new report jointly sponsored by the alliance and the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies. "It’s Hot, and Getting Hotter: Implications of Extreme Heat on Water Utility Staff and Infrastructure, and Ideas for Adapting," describes the implications of expected increasing temperatures in the U.S. on utility personnel and facilities and provides adaptation and mitigation strategies to address these heat impacts.
Phase II of Business Function Mapping project completed
Between 2019–2021, Denver Water and the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission collaborated to test, update, and refine the Mapping Climate-Related Risks and Opportunities to Water Utility Business Functions framework through a series of internal, interactive tabletop exercises.
Key messages from WUCA
Warming is here and now. Climate adaptation planning is not just about the future. Water utilities are experiencing the effects of a changing climate on their water resources today.
Know your system and explore its vulnerabilities. Assess your water system to identify vulnerabilities. Risks can only be reduced if they are identified.
Plan for multiple futures. Predicting the future is not feasible but anticipating plausible warmer future climates is. Prepare to face a variety of scenarios.
Capacity building and assessment are part of the adaptation equation. Developing the technical and managerial expertise to identify and assess climate risks to a system is as much a part of adaptation as the steps taken to implement risk reduction measures.