A Report From The Front Lines Of Climate Change
Climate change is now one of if not the greatest challenge facing the United States - and the world - today. No longer tomorrow, but today. Unfortunately it may be just as appropriate to say "yesterday", as it has already been over a year since the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) put us and the world on notice: humanity has only three decades to redesign our global economy to do away with greenhouse gas pollution and prevent global warming from increasing more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels - a minimum target set just to avoid worst case scenarios. This will be no small task.
While the picture that the IPCC paints may be bleak, fortunately, there are many who did in fact begin tackling this challenge "yesterday". At AIQUEOUS, we have the privilege to work with some of these individuals and entities - whether they are energy utilities, CCAs, not-for-profits, environmental consulting firms, or water utilities. And while for many, water resources (or water utilities) may not be the first thought when considering climate change, we here at AIQUEOUS have always seen water efficiency and drought management as inextricably linked with similar work in the energy sector to decarbonize, electrify, or improve efficiency. Indeed, the impacts of climate change will, and already have in many cases, affect the water utility programs that protect our water quality, public health, and safety.
AIQUEOUS is often either seen as a water and energy company, or an energy and water company - depending on who you ask - but for us, in the context of climate change, it's the same difference - our global challenge is shared.
In this first of two installments of "A Report From The Front Lines Of Climate Change", we highlight how our clients and partners in the water sector to date are responding and building the tools to face this head on.
The National Wildlife Federation, Sierra Club, and the Galveston Bay Foundation
Since 2015 AIQUEOUS has had the opportunity to work with these partners and provide analysis in various ways - on how water conservation serves as a cost-effective alternative to supply side strategies, by developing guidance and providing training on how to use the State Water Implementation Fund of Texas (SWIFT) to fund water conservation projects and programs, and through the evaluation of the statewide water conservation potential of residential irrigation scheduling.
Among the many AIQUEOUS efforts of which we are proud of is our collaborative work with these organizations as part of the Texas Living Waters Project, a joint effort to “ensure fresh water will always reach its natural destinations - for our wildlife, our economy and our kids.”
The Texas Living Waters Project continues to provide tremendous, data-driven work to find common sense and workable solutions to Texas’ water future. Currently, Project members are all working to update the state water conservation scorecard so stay tuned and visit their website to sign up for the newsletter and keep informed about their efforts.
Alliance for Water Efficiency
Through our work with the Texas Living Waters Project and activity with the Texas Water Foundation, AIQUEOUS became a member of the Alliance for Water Efficiency. This stakeholder-based nonprofit organization is dedicated to the efficient and sustainable use of water, serves as a North American advocate for water-efficient products and programs, and provides information and assistance on water conservation efforts.
AWE’s work is vital and effective. In 2018, AWE’s advocacy not only saved the WaterSense program for another year, but resulted in the authorization of the program going forward. With the October signing of the America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 by President Trump, WaterSense will qualify for annual appropriations every year rather than relying on the EPA administrator’s discretionary funding. Additionally in the prior year, 2017, AWE released its Water Efficiency and Conservation State Scorecard, which reviewed, scored, and graded, states for laws supporting water conservation and efficiency. The 2017 report added a component for climate resiliency planning and performed a parallel evaluation, scoring, and grading process.
Last week - on February 13th - AIQUEOUS and the Alliance for Water Efficiency (AWE) delivered a webinar on our WaterWays(r) platform, which we are able to provide to AWE members at a discount. We are excited and honored that AWE accepted our offer to do so, and we hope that many AWE members will elect to include us in the valuable work that they do.
AIQUEOUS’ Plans for Our Water Future
Our work in the water sector continues, and through our software platform, WaterWays, we have the opportunity to work alongside water utilities and organizations that are making great strides in water conservation, water resiliency, and water quality. Just last year in fact, our water utility clients delivered a total of 68,670,861 gallons of water saved among their communities. Another client, Texas State and the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, recorded over 2,200 tests with volunteers across the State of Texas to monitor and protect the environmental quality of the over 191,000 miles of Texas waterways.
In our services work, and with our WaterWays and POWERPATH software platforms, AIQUEOUS is committed to collaborating with our clients and partners to deliver the tools and means to combat climate change in their communities. Whether that be through our support of Community Choice Aggregators in California on decarbonization and electrification, energy utilities on their renewable energy, electrification and energy efficiency programs, or through our commitment to water conservation, water resiliency, and water quality - because these areas of focus are equally as important in the mitigation of climate change moving forward.
If you are interested in any of the work that our partners and clients are involved in and would like to learn more, please get in touch. In Part 2 of "A Report From The Front Lines of Climate Change" next month, we look forward to highlighting how our clients in the energy sector are facing the same problem, and with energy, pun intended.