Value of Water Coalition Launched

November 22, 2013

WEF Resources & Efforts

WEF and other water-sector organizations to educate about importance of water services

For more than a year, the Water Environment Federation (WEF; Alexandria, Va.) has been working with other water-industry businesses and organizations to create a campaign intended to increase public awareness of water as an important resource through the Value of Water Coalition.

Officially launched Oct. 1, the coalition provides a single voice to educate about the importance of the reliable delivery of clean and safe water and treatment of wastewater and the need for sufficient investment in infrastructure to ensure these services in the future, according to a coalition news release.

“While a majority of Americans believes clean water is of vital importance to the nation, just 40% of Americans think the same of water infrastructure, showing the clear disconnect this campaign aims to fix,” said Eileen O’Neill, interim executive director for WEF. “Because much of our water system lies unseen underground, there is an awareness gap among the public that needs to be overcome in order to drive the support necessary to institute real and much-needed change.”

For the public education campaign, the coalition of public and private organizations will leverage efforts to educate about the value of water and challenges facing water infrastructure. The coalition’s website,, provides the latest news and information on water-related issues and continually updated content about water and water infrastructure through videos, infographics, Slideshare decks, and more, the news release says.

“This new campaign is the culmination of a year’s worth of hard work from all sides of our sector, and is designed to address the common challenge we all share: the lack of public understanding and support for the much-needed investment into water and water infrastructure,” said Cordell Samuels, immediate past president of WEF. “This campaign looks to reach audiences where they now seek information the most, online through social media channels.”

Opportunities may exist in the future for a number of water sector organizations, including WEF’s Member Associations, to assist in funding potential media opportunities.

Current members of the coalition include WEF, American Water (Voorhees, N.J.), American Water Works Association (Denver), Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (Washington, D.C.), CH2M Hill (Englewood, Colo.), MWH Global (Broomfield, Colo.), National Association of Clean Water Agencies (Washington, D.C.), National Association of Water Companies (Washington, D.C.), United Water (Harrington Park, N.J.), U.S. Water Alliance (Washington, D.C.), Veolia Water (Paris), and Xylem Inc. (White Plains, N.Y.), according to the news release.

Jennifer Fulcher, WEF Highlights

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