What happens to water after it goes down your sink drain may not be the topic of dinner-table conversation, but it is a real issue in water resource engineering. Engineers tasked with maintaining and updating wastewater systems across the country work to ensure access to clean water and the proper treatment of water after it is used.
A CS Engineering Media article reports on the status of the United States water infrastructure system and the great need for updates and repairs.
Systems Require Attention Now
Future municipal infrastructure needs need to be planned for now. This includes roads, bridges, and especially water and wastewater pipes.
According to the CS Engineering article the “2017 ASCE Infrastructure Report Card gave wastewater infrastructure a D+ and drinking water a D.”
The average age of millions of miles of water and sewer pipes in the U.S. is now 45 years old. As these systems continue to age more issues will surface. If proper funding is not put toward updating these systems, public health concerns will continue to increase.
New Trends and Methodologies
As the need for updated infrastructure arises especially concerning clean and wastewater management, new trends for materials and methods to implement improvements also emerge.
There are several ways government entities choose to handle the need for upgrades and repairs. These usually include in-house replacement projects or design-bid-build processes using contractors and consultants.
New techniques to make repairs to existing water management systems include micro-tunneling or horizontal directional drilling. The use of PVC or CPVC pipe as an alternative material is also becoming more popular. These materials are more cost effective and less likely to cause issues than traditional materials like cast iron.
Whatever methods a municipality chooses to follow the importance of evaluation and planning will greatly affect the longevity and effectiveness of infrastructure. The process of evaluation and planning will also depend on collaboration across many disciplines.
OEI Water Resource Engineering Experts
OEI has over three decades of water resource management experience. Our experience includes system analysis and upgrades to increase the safety of community infrastructure. We take pride in being a leading engineering firm that provides our clients with designs that reflect the most up to date techniques and materials.
We also provide a streamlined process because of the multidisciplinary specialties that make up our firm. OEI departments work together to create comprehensive solutions that address civil, environmental, architectural, and other municipal planning fields. Visit our projects page to discover the many ways we can provide wastewater management and other solutions to any municipality’s water needs.