Why “Imagine a Day Without Water?”
In 2019, the US Water Alliance and DigDeep identified that there are two million individuals in our country who lack access to clean and safe drinking water and sanitation services. In addition, millions more are on the verge of losing water access. Black, Indigenous, and Communities of Color, as well as low-income communities, are the most likely to lack adequate plumbing and face other water access issues.
In the last year, dozens of US communities—from West Virginia to Mississippi to New Mexico—experienced devastating impacts to their water systems due to ice storms, heavy rains, flooding, drought, and failing infrastructure. These impacts require expensive repairs to ensure consistent provision of water services to communities. Due to the burden on customers to be the primary source of funding for infrastructure improvements, many people experience multi-day service interruptions because of the inability to pay increasingly higher water bills.
When a person doesn’t have water, they cannot stay hydrated, prepare meals, bathe their children, wash their hands, flush the toilet, or do laundry. Further, communities can’t put out the wildfires that increase each year as a result of the warming climate, farmers cannot water their crops, and our nation’s public health and safety are compromised.
Imagine a Day Without Water serves as a National Day of Action to unite communities and policymakers to advance greater and more equitable investment in water systems. With the passage of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law in 2021, which includes over $50 billion dedicated to improving water infrastructure, the time is ripe to advocate for continued, sustainable water infrastructure investment in communities that have lacked adequate resources for far too long.
This is our chance to collectively call for investment in water systems and the communities they serve, rooting our messaging in water’s critical role to our survival.