U.S. Water Infrastructure Funding and Business Risks Survey

2023

Download the surveyDownload the EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Connecting businesses and water infrastructure

Introducing the American Business Water Coalition

Every business in every community in America is at risk.

Without a dramatic increase in federal investment, the future looks increasingly bleak. Service disruptions will cost businesses an estimated $116 billion per year and more than $625 billion per year in business sales will be lost by 2029.

$51 billion economic loss for just 11 water-reliant industries in 2019.

Every business is dependent on our nation’s water infrastructure, and underinvestment is costing American businesses every day.

In many industries, even temporary disruptions in water service can have major impacts, often causing production to grind to a complete halt. In fact, this is already occurring – water service disruptions resulted in a $51 billion economic loss for just 11 water-reliant industries (healthcare, construction, manufacturing, retail, education and more) in 2019.

High profile crises in Jackson, Mississippi and Flint, Michigan have shown the serious consequences of underinvestment in water infrastructure, and these cities aren’t alone. In the summer of 2022, more than 130,000 people and businesses in metro-Detroit were placed under a boil water advisory for three weeks because of a water main break. About a week later, the same thing happened in Jacksonville, Florida, affecting 19,000 people and businesses. Also in 2022, a 140-year-old water main snapped in Newark, New Jersey, causing not only a boil water advisory for businesses in the city but also a sinkhole that swallowed a car. In 2021, more than half of Texas went without water after a winter storm passed through the state, and almost 1.5 million people and businesses were still without water a week later.

The water infrastructure investment challenge.

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) invested $55 billion in our nation’s water infrastructure, the largest single investment in history. However, this investment is not enough to bring our nation’s water systems into a state of good repair – the American Water Works Association estimates that restoring existing water systems and expanding them to serve a growing population will cost at least $1 trillion over the next 25 years, and this does not take into account emerging challenges like increasing drought in the west; floods in the East, Midwest and South; and new contaminants like PFAS.

Further, Congress is not even close to funding water infrastructure programs at their fully authorized levels. Roughly $20 billion in investments in water infrastructure were authorized but not appropriated in IIJA alone.

This funding shortfall is putting water utilities, as well as the companies and communities they serve, in a bind. In fact, only about 17% of utilities are confident that they can adequately maintain their systems, let alone upgrade them to prepare for emerging risks, without increased outside investment.

$55 billion

in our nation’s water infrastructure, the largest single investment in history

$1 trillion

cost over the next 25 years

83%

of utilities are not confident that they can adequately maintain their systems

Massive opportunity

On the other hand, adequate investment in water infrastructure would cause U.S. GDP to grow by $4.5 trillion over 20 years and create 800,000 new jobs.

The business community must engage in the fight for increased federal investment in water infrastructure. Engagement is a win-win proposition: the water sector will benefit from a strong business voice highlighting the economic opportunities, and businesses will be supported with the certainty that they can rely on their local water infrastructure.

$4.5 trillion over 20 years creates 800,000 new jobs

Members

Advisory Council

From the newsroom

The American Business Water Coalition urges the House not to adopt the topline funding levels and subcommittee allocations

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The American Business Water Coalition Applauds Congress’ Final Interior-Environment Appropriations Bill with Maintained Federal Investment in Water Infrastructure

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Connecticut water infrastructure and business risks report

Federal spending bill threatens 44 water infrastructure projects supporting jobs and economic development.

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ABWC Report: 10 Extreme Water Disasters in 10 Days

ABWC Report: 10 Extreme Water Disasters in 10 Days Strain Economies Across the Nation and Expose Critical Federal Funding Gap for Water Infrastructure

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American Business Water Coalition Applauds Congressional Agreement on Increased Spending Levels and Urges Deal to Safeguard Water Infrastructure Funding

On Sunday, January 7, congressional leadership announced a deal to increase topline fiscal year 2024 spending levels which would be a dramatic improvement over the House-passed water appropriations bill.

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Washington water infrastructure and business risks report

Federal spending bill threatens eight clean water infrastructure projects supporting jobs and economic development this year and dozens more in years to come

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Kentucky water infrastructure and business risks report

Federal spending bill threatens 281 water infrastructure projects supporting jobs and economic development

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Alaska water infrastructure and business risks report

Federal spending bill threatens 15 water infrastructure projects supporting jobs and economic development.

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Texas water infrastructure and business risks report

Federal spending bill threatens 11 water infrastructure projects in Texas’ 12th congressional district supporting jobs and economic development.

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Idaho Business Review: Water Infrastructure Funding in Idaho Faces Uncertain Future if House Bill Passes

As Congress considers the House appropriations bill for the 2024 fiscal year, concerns over potential cuts to the Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (SRFs) have emerged, with implications for vital water infrastructure projects in Idaho.

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The American Business Water Coalition is a group of water-reliant businesses—from manufacturing to energy to tech and beyond. The coalition provides a platform for businesses across the country to urge Congress and the Administration to increase investment in water infrastructure, and foster relationships between businesses and their local utilities.
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