Water affordability is a growing problem in the United States. Researchers have estimated that within the coming few years, approximately 33% of the U.S. population will have water bills that are not affordable. When determining whether water is affordable, water rates are compared to household income. The United Nations for example, has determined that bills that exceed 3% of household income are unaffordable, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has determined that bills exceeding 2.5% of household income for water service plus 2% for waste and storm water are unaffordable.
Yet we all know that water is necessary for life and must therefore be considered a human right. As water contamination, aging infrastructure, replacing dangerous lead pipes and other factors continue to increase the cost of water for families, Freshwater Future and our partners are pushing to ensure that affordable water is available to everyone and that innovative ways are pursued to reduce overall costs of providing and treating water for a sustainable future.