Water pipe lines throughout the United States are quickly failing and experts have placed the cost of fixing those lines at more than $1 trillion over the next 25 years.
An industry study released on Monday revealed that buried drinking-water mains have aged so much that if not replaced soon they will deteriorate.
“We’ve known for a long time that pipe networks are aging. We didn’t appreciate the magnitude of the challenge … The size of the need was startling even to water professionals.”
The estimate does not include waste water lines which could double the cost.
In some areas it is cheaper to build new lines rather then outright replacing old ones. For example in the Northeast replacing old lines in cities will cost $92 billion while building new water lines through 2035 will cost $16 billion. In comparison it would cost $153 billion in the West to build new lines but just $82 billion to bring old lines up to current standards.
In some cases cast iron pipes currently being used are 100-years-old with experts estimating that they can last up to 130 years, long enough to add a new system in the 25 year estimated time span.
In the meantime the tremendous cost of replacing water lines will fall squarely on the shoulders of consumers who currently pay $3.75 per 1,000 gallons of water, a price that will likely increase in the years to come as water line repairs adds to the cost of doing business.
Are you surprised by the extremely high cost of replacing water lines throughout the United States.