Every year we learn more and more about the critical role water plays in our daily lives, the environment and our businesses. Under normal circumstances, we tend to take clean water for granted. But in times of crisis, we learn what a valuable – and scarce – asset it really is.
That has become abundantly clear during 2020, as we deal with the effects of an unprecedented global pandemic.
Changes in peoples’ activities have had a significant impact on water usage. According to utility water-monitoring reports, residential water use has increased 21% during the pandemic, as many Americans have sheltered at home. They’re showering more, doing more dishes and laundry and are washing their hands frequently as part of their observance of COVID hygiene guidelines.
Through it all, our municipal water distribution and treatment systems help to keep clean water flowing to homes and industries, 24/7.
Hospitals, which have become the global focal points for care during the coronavirus pandemic, need a reliable source of clean water. They use it for everything from cleaning and sanitation and food preparation to operating medical devices and delivering babies. Poor water quality in healthcare facilities can negatively impact the health of sick patients and increase the spread of diseases such as COVID-19.
Unfortunately, in many parts of the world, clean water for healthcare is only a dream. According to WaterAid, a lack of facilities means over 2 billion people are forced to seek care in places where there is no clean water. Another 1.5 billion people visit health care facilities with no sanitation services.
As the pandemic continues to affect millions of people worldwide, all attention is focused on the pharmaceutical industry, where dozens of companies are developing and testing vaccines.
Not surprisingly, vaccine production is a very water-intensive industry. Purification accounts for up to 80% of the manufacturing costs of most biological drugs and vaccines. Contaminants must be removed via multiple steps, which means yields are low, production is expensive and water use is high.
Water is also used to reconstitute products, during synthesis, during the production of the finished product and to purify vessels, equipment and packaging materials.
The full extent of the effects of the pandemic on the water sector is still developing.
But one thing is certain: As the pandemic is brought under control, water utilities must assess how to continue to provide unparalleled quality and service to residential and non-residential users. More importantly, the public (all users of water) must finally accept the full cost of water.
Imagine a Day Without Water 2020 is the sixth annual day to raise awareness and educate America about the value of water.
At Aquarius Technologies, we’re doing our part to help raise the public’s awareness of the vital role that water plays in our lives.
On Oct. 21, 2020 help us spread the word about this important initiative.Learn More