Although the energy-intensive nature of providing water services is often unrecognized, these activities consume enormous amounts of power and fuel. The good news is that water conservation and efficiency opportunities are abundant.
Energy / Water Nexus
A recently completed study, Greenhouse Gas and Energy Co-benefits of Water Conservation, the first of its kind in Canada, suggests a significant untapped opportunity exists for water conservation to reduce energy, save municipal dollars and mitigate Greenhouse Gas emissions.
In the United States, water and wastewater treatment facilities account for 35% of energy used in municipalities. The consequences of the growing electric power and water demands will require more intensive management of water resources, greater integration between water and energy planning, more watershed or regional planning, and new science and technology to meet these needs.
We get energy from water, and we use energy to supply, treat and use water. Water use involves significant energy inputs which must be considered. The solutions to water and energy management issues require that decision-makers, policy leaders, and the public better understand the relationship between water and energy and take the necessary steps to ensure the sustainable supply and use of these resources.