Rural Water - Quarter 4, 2008 - (Page 41)

SAFE DRINKING WATER: There is NO ALTERNATIVE BY GARY WEBBER, GROUNDWATER TECHNICIAN, MISSOURI RURAL WATER ASSOCIATION I AM HOME for the weekend, but I have a lot to do. I will go to the farm and take care of the cows, go to a machinery auction, perhaps run to the big city. I would like to drive to my favorite walk-about creek and look for arrowheads, which is about 80 miles round trip in itself. Unfortunately, my Jeep is about out of gas and it will take $60 to fill it up. Let’s see, if I burn $60 in gas each weekend, that is about $240 per month. And, if my wife does that too, we will be broke very soon. I guess I’ll have to cut back on my travel and conserve, or I can utilize an alternative method of transportation. I have wanted a motorcycle for some time now, which will help save on fuel costs, but if it’s raining or cold, I will still need my Jeep. I wish there was an alternative to using gas. I really like driving my Jeep whenever and wherever I wish. For most of us, today’s high fuel costs have made us choose or identify alternatives in our travel and lifestyle. The increased cost of fuel has reflected on nearly all consumer products becoming more expensive. This undoubtedly will reflect on our water service costs sooner or later. Consequently, with these mentioned increased costs it will be extremely important for local officials to manage the water system in an efficient manner to keep unnecessary costs out of the expense column. On the state and federal level, it is also exceedingly important to evaluate policies and regulations and their potential impact on affordability of our public drinking water commodity. Otherwise, we may “shoot ourselves in the foot” if the public starts looking to alternative sources of water service that may turn out to be unsafe to drink. The affordability of our public drinking water and EPA continually adopting more regulations are issues that should be discussed at a later time. But when it comes to safe drinking water for our families and our communities, there are no alternatives! The public drinking water system is the safest and most affordable service as a water source that any of us can choose. I think most of us can agree today that when it comes to our public drinking water commodity, it continues to be one heck of a deal! 1993 Fuel Milk Eggs House Car College Drinking Water $1.08 per gallon $2.27 per gallon $0.62 dozen $124,000 average $12,750 average $3,200 average 4 tenths of 1 cent per gallon 2008 $3.49 per gallon $3.69 per gallon $2.39 dozen $300,000 average $28,000 average $20,000 average 6 tenths of 1 cent per gallon When it comes to the cost of water supplied by public water systems surveyed in Missouri, the average cost per gallon of water was less than 1 cent per gallon at .004 dollars in 1993. Even today, it is only approximately .006 dollars per gallon delivered to your turnon faucet. Yes, when times get tough, we tend to tighten our belts, so to speak. We make choices to operate in a different manner and live a little closer to our real needs. Alternative practices, alternative entertainment or travel methods, etc., are reasonable, but when it comes to our drinking water, we should never cut corners or consider substitutes. Safe drinking water from the safest water supply system in the world is safe water you can afford. By the way, you can buy bottled water! It will likely cost you $1.80 to $8 per gallon depending on how you wish to purchase it. Reprinted with the permission of the Missouri Rural Water Association. Fourth Quarter 2008 • 41

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Water - Quarter 4, 2008

Rural Water - Quarter 4, 2008
From the President
Rural Water: Where are We Headed?
The Future of Water in America
Bank Collateral Controls in Nervous Times
Bottle of Water or Billion Dollar Bully?
Aqua Chocolate No Mas
Why Even Small Water Systems Should Have Personnel Policy Manuals
Safe Drinking Water
Regulatory Update
2008 NRWA Industry Event
Throwing My Loop
Index to Advertisers
From the CEO

Rural Water - Quarter 4, 2008