Water supply is the provision of water by public utilities commercial
organisations, community endeavors or by individuals, usually via a
system of pumps and pipes.
Irrigation is covered separately.
1 Global access to clean water
2 Technical overview
3 Service quality
3.1 Continuity of supply
4 Institutional responsibility and governance
4.1 Policy and regulation
4.1.1 Regulatory agencies
4.2 Service provision
4.2.1 Geographical coverage
4.2.2 Sector coverage
4.2.3 Ownership and governance arrangements
22.214.171.124 Private sector participation
126.96.36.199 Public water service provision
188.8.131.52 Governance arrangements
4.4 Comparing the performance of water and sanitation service
5 Financial aspects
5.1 Costs and financing
7 Health aspects
7.1 Outbreaks of diseases due to contaminated water supply
9 Society and culture
9.1 Women and water supply issues in developing countries
10 See also
12 External links
Global access to clean water
Shipot, an underground water source in Ukraine
In 2010, about 87% of the global population (5.9 billion people) had
access to piped water supply through house connections or to an
improved water source through other means than house, including
standpipes, water kiosks, spring supplies and protected wells.
However, about 13% (about 900 million people) did not have access to
an improved water source and had to use unprotected wells or springs,
canals, lakes or rivers for their water needs.
A clean water supply - in particular water that is not polluted with
fecal matter from lack of sanitation - is the single most important
determinant of public health. Destruction of water
supply and/or sanitation infrastructure after major catastrophes
(earthquakes, floods, war, etc.) poses the immediate threat of severe
epidemics of waterborne diseases, several of which can be
Water supply network
Water supply systems get water from a variety of locations after
appropriate treatment, including groundwater (aquifers), surface water
(lakes and rivers), and the sea through desalination. The water
treatment steps include, in most cases, purification, disinfection
through chlorination and sometimes fluoridation. Treated water then
either flows by gravity or is pumped to reservoirs, which can be
elevated such as water towers or on the ground (for indicators related
to the efficiency of drinking water distribution see non-revenue
water). Once water is used, wastewater is typically discharged in a
sewer system and treated in a sewage treatment plant before being
discharged into a river, lake or the sea or reused for landscaping,
irrigation or industrial use (see also sanitation).
In the United States, the typical single family home uses about 138 US
gallons (520 l; 115 imp gal) of water per day (2016
estimate) or 58.6 US gallons (222 l; 48.8 imp gal) per
capita per day. This includes several common residential end use
purposes (in decreasing order) like toilet use, showers, tap (faucet)
use, washing machine use, leaks, other (unidentified), baths, and
dishwasher use.[better source needed]
A young girl collects clean water from a communal water supply in
Many of the 3.5 billion people having access to piped water receive a
poor or very poor quality of service, especially in developing
countries where about 80% of the world population lives.
service quality has many dimensions: continuity; water quality;
pressure; and the degree of responsiveness of service providers to
Continuity of supply
Continuity of water supply is taken for granted in most developed
countries, but is a severe problem in many developing countries, where
sometimes water is only provided for a few hours every day or a few
days a week. It is estimated that about half of the population of
developing countries receives water on an intermittent basis.
Drinking water quality has a micro-biological and a physico-chemical
dimension. There are thousands of parameters of water quality. In
public water supply systems water should, at a minimum, be
disinfected—most commonly through the use of chlorination or the use
of ultra violet light—or it may need to undergo treatment,
especially in the case of surface water. For more details, please see
the separate entries on water quality, water treatment and drinking
1880s model of pumping engine, in Herne Bay Museum
Water pressures vary in different locations of a distribution system.
Water mains below the street may operate at higher pressures, with a
pressure reducer located at each point where the water enters a
building or a house. In poorly managed systems, water pressure can be
so low as to result only in a trickle of water or so high that it
leads to damage to plumbing fixtures and waste of water. Pressure in
an urban water system is typically maintained either by a pressurised
water tank serving an urban area, by pumping the water up into a water
tower and relying on gravity to maintain a constant pressure in the
system or solely by pumps at the water treatment plant and repeater
Typical UK pressures are 4–5 bar (60-70 PSI) for an urban
supply. However, some people can get over eight bars
or below one bar. A single iron main pipe may cross a deep valley, it
will have the same nominal pressure, however each consumer will get a
bit more or less because of the hydrostatic pressure (about 1 bar/10 m
height). So people at the bottom of a 100-foot (30 m) hill will
get about 3 bars more than those at the top.
The effective pressure also varies because of the pressure loss due to
supply resistance even for the same static pressure. An urban consumer
may have 5 metres of 15 mm pipe running from the iron main, so
the kitchen tap flow will be fairly unrestricted, so high flow. A
rural consumer may have a kilometre of rusted and limed 22 mm
iron pipe, so their kitchen tap flow will be small.
For this reason, the UK domestic water system has traditionally (prior
to 1989) employed a "cistern feed" system, where the incoming supply
is connected to the kitchen sink and also a header/storage tank in the
Water can dribble into this tank through a 12 mm pipe,
plus ball valve, and then supply the house on 22 or 28 mm pipes.
Gravity water has a small pressure (say ¼ bar in the bathroom) so
needs wide pipes to allow for higher flows. This is fine for baths and
toilets but is frequently inadequate for showers. A booster pump or a
hydrophore is installed to increase and maintain pressure. For this
reason urban houses are increasingly using mains pressure boilers
(combies) which take a long time to fill a bath but suit the high back
pressure of a shower.
Institutional responsibility and governance
A great variety of institutions have responsibilities in water supply.
A basic distinction is between institutions responsible for policy and
regulation on the one hand; and institutions in charge of providing
services on the other hand.
Policy and regulation
Water supply policies and regulation are usually defined by one or
several Ministries, in consultation with the legislative branch. In
United States the
United States Environmental Protection Agency,
whose administrator reports directly to the President, is responsible
for water and sanitation policy and standard setting within the
executive branch. In other countries responsibility for sector policy
is entrusted to a Ministry of Environment (such as in
Colombia), to a Ministry of Health (such as in Panama, Honduras and
Uruguay), a Ministry of Public Works (such as in Ecuador and Haiti), a
Ministry of Economy (such as in German states) or a Ministry of Energy
(such as in Iran). A few countries, such as
Jordan and Bolivia, even
have a Ministry of Water. Often several Ministries share
responsibilities for water supply. In the European Union, important
policy functions have been entrusted to the supranational level.
Policy and regulatory functions include the setting of tariff rules
and the approval of tariff increases; setting, monitoring and
enforcing norms for quality of service and environmental protection;
benchmarking the performance of service providers; and reforms in the
structure of institutions responsible for service provision. The
distinction between policy functions and regulatory functions is not
always clear-cut. In some countries they are both entrusted to
Ministries, but in others regulatory functions are entrusted to
agencies that are separate from Ministries.
Dozens of countries around the world have established regulatory
agencies for infrastructure services, including often water supply and
sanitation, in order to better protect consumers and to improve
efficiency. Regulatory agencies can be entrusted with a variety of
responsibilities, including in particular the approval of tariff
increases and the management of sector information systems, including
benchmarking systems. Sometimes they also have a mandate to settle
complaints by consumers that have not been dealt with satisfactorily
by service providers. These specialized entities are expected to be
more competent and objective in regulating service providers than
departments of government Ministries. Regulatory agencies are supposed
to be autonomous from the executive branch of government, but in many
countries have often not been able to exercise a great degree of
autonomy. In the
United States regulatory agencies for utilities have
existed for almost a century at the level of states, and in
the level of provinces. In both countries they cover several
infrastructure sectors. In many U.S. states they are called Public
Utility Commissions. For
England and Wales, a regulatory agency for
water (OFWAT) was created as part of the privatization of the water
industry in 1989. In many developing countries, water regulatory
agencies were created during the 1990s in parallel with efforts at
increasing private sector participation. (for more details on
regulatory agencies in Latin America, for example, please see Water
and sanitation in Latin America and the regional association of water
regulatory agencies ADERASA )
Many countries do not have regulatory agencies for water. In these
countries service providers are regulated directly by local
government, or the national government. This is, for example, the case
in the countries of continental Europe, in China and India.[dubious
For more information on utility regulation in the water sector, see
the Body of Knowledge on Infrastructure Regulation  and the World
Bank's knowledge base on the same topic at .
Water supply service providers, which are often utilities, differ from
each other in terms of their geographical coverage relative to
administrative boundaries; their sectoral coverage; their ownership
structure; and their governance arrangements.
The sole water supply of this section of Wilder, Tennessee, 1942
Many water utilities provide services in a single city, town or
municipality. However, in many countries municipalities have
associated in regional or inter-municipal or multi-jurisdictional
utilities to benefit from economies of scale. In the United States
these can take the form of special-purpose districts which may have
independent taxing authority. An example of a multi-jurisdictional
water utility in the
United States is WASA, a utility serving
Washington, DC and various localities in the state of Maryland.
Multi-jurisdictional utilities are also common in Germany, where they
are known as "Zweckverbaende", in
France and in Italy.
In some federal countries, there are water service providers covering
most or all cities and towns in an entire state, such as in all states
Brazil and some states in
Water supply and sanitation
in Mexico). In
England and Wales, water supply and sewerage is
supplied almost entirely through ten regional companies. Some smaller
countries, especially developed countries, have established service
providers that cover the entire country or at least most of its cities
and major towns. Such national service providers are especially
prevalent in West Africa and Central America, but also exist, for
example, in Tunisia,
Uruguay (see also water supply and
sanitation in Uruguay). In rural areas, where about half the world
population lives, water services are often not provided by utilities,
but by community-based organizations which usually cover one or
sometimes several villages.
Some water utilities provide only water supply services, while
sewerage is under the responsibility of a different entity. This is
for example the case in Tunisia. However, in most cases water
utilities also provide sewer and sewage treatment services. In some
cities or countries utilities also distribute electricity. In a few
cases such multi-utilities also collect solid waste and provide local
telephone services. An example of such an integrated utility can be
found in the Colombian city of Medellín.
Utilities that provide
water, sanitation and electricity can be found in Frankfurt, Germany
(Mainova), in Casablanca,
Morocco and in
Gabon in West Africa.
Multi-utilities provide certain benefits such as common billing and
the option to cross-subsidize water services with revenues from
electricity sales, if permitted by law.
Ownership and governance arrangements
Water supply providers can be either public, private, mixed or
cooperative. Most urban water supply services around the world are
provided by public entities. As Willem-Alexander, Prince of Orange
(2002) stated, "The water crisis that is affecting so many people is
mainly a crisis of governance — not of water scarcity." The
introduction of cost-reflective tariffs together with
cross-subsidization between richer and poorer consumers is an
essential governance reform in order to reduce the high levels of
Water (UAW) and to provide the finance needed to
extend the network to those poorest households who remain unconnected.
Partnership arrangements between the public and private sector can
play an important role in order to achieve this objective.
Private sector participation
An estimated 10 percent of urban water supply is provided by private
or mixed public-private companies, usually under concessions, leases
or management contracts. Under these arrangements the public entity
that is legally responsible for service provision delegates certain or
all aspects of service provision to the private service provider for a
period typically ranging from 4 to 30 years. The public entity
continues to own the assets. These arrangements are common in France
and in Spain. Only in few parts of the world water supply systems have
been completely sold to the private sector (privatization), such as in
Wales as well as in Chile. The largest private water
companies in the world are Suez and
Veolia Environnement from France;
Aguas de Barcelona from Spain; and Thames
Water from the UK, all of
which are engaged internationally (see links to website of these
companies below). In recent years, a number of cities have reverted to
the public sector in a process called "remunicipalization".
Public water service provision
90% of urban water supply and sanitation services are currently in the
public sector. They are owned by the state or local authorities, or
also by collectives or cooperatives. They run without an aim for
profit but are based on the ethos of providing a common good
considered to be of public interest. In most middle and low-income
countries, these publicly owned and managed water providers can be
inefficient as a result of political interference, leading to
over-staffing and low labor productivity. Ironically, the main losers
from this institutional arrangement are the urban poor in these
countries. Because they are not connected to the network, they end up
paying far more per liter of water than do more well-off households
connected to the network who benefit from the implicit subsidies that
they receive from loss-making utilities. The fact that we are still so
far from achieving universal access to clean water and sanitation
shows that public water authorities, in their current state, are not
working well enough. Yet some are being very successful and are
modelling the best forms of public management. As Ryutaro Hashimoto,
former Japanese Prime Minister, notes: "Public water services
currently provide more than 90 percent of water supply in the world.
Modest improvement in public water operators will have immense impact
on global provision of services."
Governance arrangements for both public and private utilities can take
many forms (Kurian and McCarney, 2010). Governance arrangements
define the relationship between the service provider, its owners, its
customers and regulatory entities. They determine the financial
autonomy of the service provider and thus its ability to maintain its
assets, expand services, attract and retain qualified staff, and
ultimately to provide high-quality services. Key aspects of governance
arrangements are the extent to which the entity in charge of providing
services is insulated from arbitrary political intervention; and
whether there is an explicit mandate and political will to allow the
service provider to recover all or at least most of its costs through
tariffs and retain these revenues. If water supply is the
responsibility of a department that is integrated in the
administration of a city, town or municipality, there is a risk that
tariff revenues are diverted for other purposes. In some cases, there
is also a risk that staff are appointed mainly on political grounds
rather than based on their professional credentials.
International standards for water supply system are covered by
International Classification of Standards (ICS) 91.140.60.
Comparing the performance of water and sanitation service
Comparing the performance of water and sanitation service providers
(utilities) is needed, because the sector offers limited scope for
direct competition (natural monopoly). Firms operating in competitive
markets are under constant pressure to out perform each other. Water
utilities are often sheltered from this pressure, and it frequently
shows: some utilities are on a sustained improvement track, but many
others keep falling further behind best practice.
performance of utilities allows the stimulation of competition,
establish realistic targets for improvement and create pressure to
catch up with better utilities. Information on benchmarks for water
and sanitation utilities is provided by the International Benchmarking
Costs and financing
The cost of supplying water consists, to a very large extent, of fixed
costs (capital costs and personnel costs) and only to a small extent
of variable costs that depend on the amount of water consumed (mainly
energy and chemicals). The full cost of supplying water in urban areas
in developed countries is about US$1–2 per cubic meter depending on
local costs and local water consumption levels. The cost of sanitation
(sewerage and wastewater treatment) is another US$1–2 per cubic
meter. These costs are somewhat lower in developing countries.
Throughout the world, only part of these costs is usually billed to
consumers, the remainder being financed through direct or indirect
subsidies from local, regional or national governments (see section on
Besides subsidies water supply investments are financed through
internally generated revenues as well as through debt. Debt financing
can take the form of credits from commercial Banks, credits from
international financial institutions such as the
World Bank and
regional development banks (in the case of developing countries), and
bonds (in the case of some developed countries and some upper
Almost all service providers in the world charge tariffs to recover
part of their costs. According to estimates by the
World Bank the
average (mean) global water tariff is US$0.53 per cubic meter. In
developed countries the average tariff is US$1.04, while it is only
U$0.11 in the poorest developing countries. The lowest tariffs in
developing countries are found in South Asia (mean of US$0.09/m3),
while the highest are found in Latin America (US$0.41/m3). Data for
132 cities were assessed. The tariff is estimate for a consumption
level of 15 cubic meters per month. Few utilities do recover all their
costs. According to the same
World Bank study only 30% of utilities
globally, and only 50% of utilities in developed countries, generate
sufficient revenue to cover operation, maintenance and partial capital
According to another study undertaken in 2006 by NUS Consulting, the
average water and sewerage tariff in 14 mainly
VAT varied between US$0.66 per cubic meter in the United
States and the equivalent of US$2.25 per cubic meter in Denmark.
However, water consumption is much higher in the US than in Europe.
Therefore, residential water bills may be very similar, even if the
tariff per unit of consumption tends to be higher in
Europe than in
A typical family on the US East Coast paid between US$30 and US$70 per
month for water and sewer services in 2005.
In developing countries, tariffs are usually much further from
covering costs. Residential water bills for a typical consumption of
15 cubic meters per month vary between less than US$1 and US$12 per
Water and sanitation tariffs, which are almost always billed together,
can take many different forms. Where meters are installed, tariffs are
typically volumetric (per usage), sometimes combined with a small
monthly fixed charge. In the absence of meters, flat or fixed rates
— which are independent of actual consumption — are being charged.
In developed countries, tariffs are usually the same for different
categories of users and for different levels of consumption.
In developing countries, the situation is often characterized by
cross-subsidies with the intent to make water more affordable for
residential low-volume users that are assumed to be poor. For example,
industrial and commercial users are often charged higher tariffs than
public or residential users. Also, metered users are often charged
higher tariffs for higher levels of consumption (increasing-block
tariffs). However, cross-subsidies between residential users do not
always reach their objective. Given the overall low level of water
tariffs in developing countries even at higher levels of consumption,
most consumption subsidies benefit the wealthier segments of
society. Also, high industrial and commercial tariffs can provide
an incentive for these users to supply water from other sources than
the utility (own wells, water tankers) and thus actually erode the
utility's revenue base.
Water metering and
A typical residential water meter
Metering of water supply is usually motivated by one or several of
four objectives: First, it provides an incentive to conserve water
which protects water resources (environmental objective). Second, it
can postpone costly system expansion and saves energy and chemical
costs (economic objective). Third, it allows a utility to better
locate distribution losses (technical objective). Fourth, it allows
suppliers to charge for water based on use, which is perceived by many
as the fairest way to allocate the costs of water supply to users.
Metering is considered good practice in water supply and is widespread
in developed countries, except for the United Kingdom. In developing
countries it is estimated that half of all urban water supply systems
are metered and the tendency is increasing.
Water meters are read by one of several methods:
the water customer writes down the meter reading and mails in a
postcard with this info to the water department;
the water customer writes down the meter reading and uses a phone
dial-in system to transfer this info to the water department;
the water customer logs into the website of the water supply company,
enters the address, meter ID and meter readings 
a meter reader comes to the premises and enters the meter reading into
a handheld computer;
the meter reading is echoed on a display unit mounted to the outside
of the premises, where a meter reader records them;
a small radio is hooked up to the meter to automatically transmit
readings to corresponding receivers in handheld computers, utility
vehicles or distributed collectors
a small computer is hooked up to the meter that can either dial out or
receive automated phone calls that give the reading to a central
Most cities are increasingly installing
Automatic Meter Reading
Automatic Meter Reading (AMR)
systems to prevent fraud, to lower ever-increasing labor and liability
costs and to improve customer service and satisfaction.
Outbreaks of diseases due to contaminated water supply
Water supply can get contaminated by pathogens which may originate
from human excreta, for example due to a break-down or design fault in
the sanitation system, or by chemical contaminants.
Examples of contamination include:
In 1854, a cholera outbreak in London's Soho district was identified
by Dr. John Snow as originating from contaminated water from the Broad
Street pump. This can be regarded as a founding event of the science
In 1980, a hepatitis A surge due to the consumption of water from a
feces-contaminated well, in Pennsylvania
In 1987, a cryptosporidiosis outbreak is caused by the public water
supply of which the filtration was contaminated, in western
In 1993, Milwaukee Cryptosporidium outbreak
An outbreak of typhoid fever in northern Israel, which was associated
with the contaminated municipal water supply
In 1997, 369 cases of cryptosporidiosis occurred, caused by a
contaminated fountain in the Minnesota zoo. Most of the sufferers were
In 1998, a non-chlorinated municipal water supply was blamed for a
campylobacteriosis outbreak in northern Finland
In 2000, a gastroenteritis outbreak that was brought by a
non-chlorinated community water supply, in southern Finland
In 2000, an
E. coli outbreak occurred in Walkerton, Ontario, Canada.
Seven people died from drinking contaminated water. Hundreds suffered
from the symptoms of the disease, not knowing if they too would
In 2004, contamination of the community water supply, serving the
Bergen city centre of Norway, was later reported after the outbreak of
In 2007, contaminated drinking water was pinpointed which had led to
the outbreak of gastroenteritis with multiple aetiologies in
Examples of chemical contamination include:
In 1988, many people were poisoned in Camelford, when a worker put 20
tonnes of aluminium sulphate in the wrong tank.
In 1993, a fluoride poisoning outbreak resulting from overfeeding of
fluoride, in Mississippi
Main article: History of water supply and sanitation
Throughout history, people have devised systems to make getting and
using water more convenient. Living in semi-arid regions, ancient
Persians in the 1st millennium BC used qanat system to gain access to
water in the mountains. Early Rome had indoor plumbing, meaning a
system of aqueducts and pipes that terminated in homes and at public
wells and fountains for people to use.
Until the Enlightenment era, little progress was made in water supply
and sanitation and the engineering skills of the Romans were largely
neglected throughout Europe. It was in the 18th century that a rapidly
growing population fueled a boom in the establishment of private water
supply networks in London. The
Chelsea Waterworks Company
Chelsea Waterworks Company was
established in 1723 "for the better supplying the City and Liberties
Westminster and parts adjacent with water". Other
waterworks were established in London, including at
West Ham in 1743,
Lea Bridge before 1767,
Lambeth Waterworks Company in 1785, West
Middlesex Waterworks Company in 1806 and Grand Junction Waterworks
Company in 1811.
The S-bend pipe was invented by
Alexander Cummings in 1775 but became
known as the U-bend following the introduction of the U-shaped trap by
Thomas Crapper in 1880. The first screw-down water tap was patented in
1845 by Guest and Chrimes, a brass foundry in Rotherham.
Wasserkunst and fountain from 1602 in Wismar, Germany. It's an example
of pre-industrialization waterworks and fountain.
Chelsea Waterworks, 1752. Two Newcomen beam engines pumped Thames
water from a canal to reservoirs at Green Park and Hyde Park.
In ancient Peru, the Nazca people employed a system of interconnected
wells and an underground watercourse known as puquios. In
Spanish America, a community operated watercourse known as an acequia,
combined with a simple sand filtration system, provided potable water.
Beginning in the Roman era a water wheel device known as a noria
supplied water to aqueducts and other water distribution systems in
major cities in
Europe and the Middle East.
London water supply
infrastructure developed over many centuries from early mediaeval
conduits, through major 19th-century treatment works built in response
to cholera threats, to modern, large-scale reservoirs.
Water towers appeared around the late 19th century; as building height
rose, and steam, electric and diesel-powered water pumps became
available. As skyscrapers appeared, they needed rooftop water towers.
The technique of purification of drinking water by use of compressed
liquefied chlorine gas was developed in 1910 by
Carl Rogers Darnall
Carl Rogers Darnall (1867–1941), professor of chemistry
at the Army Medical School. Shortly thereafter,
Major (later Col.)
William J. L. Lyster (1869–1947) of the Army Medical Department used
a solution of calcium hypochlorite in a linen bag to treat water. For
many decades, Lyster's method remained the standard for U.S. ground
forces in the field and in camps, implemented in the form of the
familiar Lyster Bag (also spelled Lister Bag). Darnall's work became
the basis for present day systems of municipal water purification.
Desalination appeared during the late 20th century, and is still
limited to a few areas.
During the beginning of the 21st Century, especially in areas of urban
and suburban population centers, traditional centralized
infrastructure have not been able to supply sufficient quantities of
water to keep up with growing demand. Among several options that have
been managed are the extensive use of desalination technology, this is
especially prevalent in coastal areas and in "dry" countries like
Australia. Decentralization of water infrastructure has grown
extensively as a viable solution including
Rainwater harvesting and
Stormwater harvesting where policies are eventually tending towards a
more rational use and sourcing of water incorporation concepts such as
"Fit for Purpose". Emirians have the highest per capita water
consumption rate in the world, at 133 gallons.
Original map by John Snow showing the clusters of cholera cases in the
London epidemic of 1854
The first documented use of sand filters to purify the water supply
dates to 1804, when the owner of a bleachery in Paisley, Scotland,
John Gibb, installed an experimental filter, selling his unwanted
surplus to the public. The first treated public water supply in the
world was installed by engineer James Simpson for the Chelsea
Waterworks Company in
London in 1829. The practice of water
treatment soon became mainstream, and the virtues of the system were
made starkly apparent after the investigations of the physician John
Snow during the
1854 Broad Street cholera outbreak
1854 Broad Street cholera outbreak demonstrated the
role of the water supply in spreading the cholera epidemic.
Water Act introduced regulation of the water supply
companies in London, including minimum standards of water quality for
the first time. The Act "made provision for securing the supply to the
Metropolis of pure and wholesome water", and required that all water
be "effectually filtered" from 31 December 1855. This legislation
set a worldwide precedent for similar state public health
interventions across Europe.
Permanent water chlorination began in 1905, when a faulty slow sand
filter and a contaminated water supply led to a serious typhoid fever
epidemic in Lincoln, England. Dr. Alexander Cruickshank Houston
used chlorination of the water to stem the epidemic. His installation
fed a concentrated solution of chloride of lime to the water being
treated. The first continuous use of chlorine in the United States
for disinfection took place in 1908 at Boonton Reservoir (on the
Rockaway River), which served as the supply for Jersey City, New
Desalination appeared during the late 20th century, and is
still limited to a few areas.
The technique of purification of drinking water by use of compressed
liquefied chlorine gas was developed by a British officer in the
Indian Medical Service, Vincent B. Nesfield, in 1903. U.S. Army
Major Carl Rogers Darnall, Professor of Chemistry at the Army Medical
School, gave the first practical demonstration of this in 1910. This
work became the basis for present day systems of municipal water
Society and culture
Women and water supply issues in developing countries
Water supply and women in developing countries
Water supply issues have specific adverse effects on women in
developing nations. Women are often the primary family member
responsible for providing water as well as collecting it. Inclusion of
women in the design and implementation of water supply projects is an
area of concern currently being addressed by multiple world
Arizona v. California
Water Conservation District v. United States
Kansas v. Colorado
Tahoe-Sierra Preservation Council, Inc. v. Tahoe Regional Planning
Wisconsin v. Illinois
Wyoming v. Colorado
Residential water use in the U.S. and Canada
Nonresidential water use in the U.S.
List of water supply and sanitation by country
Right to water
Water supply network
Water supply terrorism
^ WHO/UNICEF joint monitoring report 2010. (2010). Retrieved from
^ William B. DeOreo, Peter Mayer, Benedykt Dziegielewski, Jack Kiefer.
2016. Residential End Uses of Water, Version 2.
Foundation. Denver, Colorado.
^ Nickson, Andrew & Francey, Richard, Tapping the Market: The
Challenge of Institutional Reform in the Urban
Water Sector, 2003
^ www.tni.org/tnibook/remunicipalisation. Transnational
Institute/Municipal Services Project/Corporate European Observatory.
^ Reforming public water services, A beginner's guide by the Water
Justice Project on Transnational Institute
^ Kurian, Mathew and Patricia McCarney (Forthcoming). Peri-urban Water
Sanitation Services: Policy, Planning and Method. Springer.
p. 300. ISBN 978-90-481-9424-7. Check date values in:
^ International Organization for Standardization. "91.140.60: Water
supply systems". Retrieved 1 March 2008.
^ "Water, Electricity and the Poor: Who Benefits from Utility
Subsidies?". The World Bank. 2006. p. 21. Retrieved
^ NUS Consulting 2005-2006 International
Water Report & Cost
Survey "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 6
December 2006. Retrieved 17 December 2006. The study covered
Denmark, Germany, the UK, Belgium, France, The Netherlands, Italy,
Finland, Australia, Spain, South Africa, Sweden,
Canada and the US.
The methodology for assessing tariffs may be different from the
methodology of the
World Bank study cited above. The report means by
"costs" average tariffs and not the costs of the utility, which can be
lower or higher than average tariffs
^ quoted from a comparison of 24 utilities on the US East Coast in the
2005 Annual Report of DC WASA, p. 38  The comparison refers to a
consumption level of 25 cubic feet per quarter
^ World Bank, op.cit., calculated from Table 2.3 on p. 21
^ "Water, Electricity and the Poor: Who Benefits from Utility
Subsidies?". The World Bank. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
^ Bowen GS, McCarthy MA (June 1983). "Hepatitis A associated with a
hardware store water fountain and a contaminated well in Lancaster
County, Pennsylvania, 1980". Am. J. Epidemiol. 117 (6): 695–705.
^ Hayes EB, Matte TD, O'Brien TR, et al. (May 1989). "Large community
outbreak of cryptosporidiosis due to contamination of a filtered
public water supply". N. Engl. J. Med. 320 (21): 1372–6.
doi:10.1056/NEJM198905253202103. PMID 2716783.
^ Egoz N, Shihab S, Leitner L, Lucian M (November 1988). "An outbreak
of typhoid fever due to contamination of the municipal water supply in
northern Israel". Isr. J. Med. Sci. 24 (11): 640–3.
^ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (October 1998).
"Outbreak of cryptosporidiosis associated with a water sprinkler
fountain—Minnesota, 1997". MMWR Morb. Mortal. Wkly. Rep. 47 (40):
856–60. PMID 9790661.
^ Kuusi M, Nuorti JP, Hänninen ML, et al. (August 2005). "A large
outbreak of campylobacteriosis associated with a municipal water
supply in Finland". Epidemiol. Infect. 133 (4): 593–601.
doi:10.1017/S0950268805003808. PMC 2870285 .
^ Kuusi M, Klemets P, Miettinen I, et al. (April 2004). "An outbreak
of gastroenteritis from a non-chlorinated community water supply". J
Epidemiol Community Health. 58 (4): 273–7.
doi:10.1136/jech.2003.009928. PMC 1732716 .
^ "Canada's worst-ever
E. coli contamination". CBC. Retrieved 18
^ Nygård K, Schimmer B, Søbstad Ø, et al. (2006). "A large
community outbreak of waterborne giardiasis-delayed detection in a
non-endemic urban area". BMC Public Health. 6: 141.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-6-141. PMC 1524744 .
^ Vestergaard LS, Olsen KE, Stensvold R, et al. (March 2007).
"Outbreak of severe gastroenteritis with multiple aetiologies caused
by contaminated drinking water in Denmark, January 2007". Euro
Surveill. 12 (3): E070329.1. PMID 17439795.
^ Penman AD, Brackin BT, Embrey R (1997). "Outbreak of acute fluoride
poisoning caused by a fluoride overfeed, Mississippi, 1993". Public
Health Rep. 112 (5): 403–9. PMC 1381948 .
London Encyclopaedia, Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert,
Macmillan, 1995, ISBN 0-333-57688-8
^ Royal Charters, Privy Council website Archived 24 August 2007 at the
^ UCLA Department of
Epidemiology West Middlesex Waterworks history
^ UCLA Department of
Epidemiology Lambeth Waterwork history
^ "A Little About Tap History". Archived from the original on 9
January 2014. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
^ Ouis, Pernilla. "‘Greening the Emirates’: the modern
construction of nature in the United Arab Emirates." cultural
geographies 9.3 (2002): 334-347.
^ History of the Chelsea Waterworks
^ Concepts and practice of humanitarian medicine (2008) Par S. William
Gunn, M. Masellis ISBN 0-387-72263-7 
^ An Act to make better Provision respecting the Supply of
the Metropolis, (15 & 16 Vict. C.84)
^ "Slow Sand Filtration of Water" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-12-17.
^ "A miracle for public health?". Retrieved 2012-12-17.
^ Reece, R.J. (1907). "Report on the Epidemic of Enteric Fever in the
City of Lincoln, 1904-5." In Thirty-Fifth Annual Report of the Local
Government Board, 1905-6: Supplement Containing the Report of the
Medical Officer for 1905-6. London:Local Government Board.
^ Leal, John L. (1909). "The Sterilization Plant of the Jersey City
Water Supply Company at Boonton, N.J." Proceedings American Water
Works Association. pp. 100-9.
^ V. B. Nesfield (1902). "A Chemical Method of Sterilizing Water
Without Affecting its Potability". Public Health: 601–3.
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