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Title: Water and Wastewater Rate Hikes Outpace CPI

Abstract

Water and wastewater treatment and delivery is the most capital-intensive of all utility services. Historically underpriced, water and wastewater rates have exhibited unprecedented growth in the past fifteen years. Steep annual increases in water and wastewater rates that outpace the Consumer Price Index (CPI) have increasingly become the norm across the United States. In this paper, we analyze water and wastewater rates across U.S. census regions between 2000 and 2014. We also examine some of the driving factors behind these rate increases, including drought, water source, required infrastructure investment, population patterns, and conservation effects. Our results demonstrate that water and wastewater prices have consistently increased and have outstripped CPI throughout the study period nationwide, as well as within each census region. Further, evaluation of the current and upcoming challenges facing water and wastewater utilities suggests that sharp rate increases are likely to continue in the foreseeable future.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1377851
Report Number(s):
LBNL-1005705
ir:1005705
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
99 GENERAL AND MISCELLANEOUS

Citation Formats

Stratton, Hannah, Fuchs, Heidi, Chen, Yuting, Dunham, Camilla, and Williams, Alison. Water and Wastewater Rate Hikes Outpace CPI. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1377851.
Stratton, Hannah, Fuchs, Heidi, Chen, Yuting, Dunham, Camilla, & Williams, Alison. Water and Wastewater Rate Hikes Outpace CPI. United States. doi:10.2172/1377851.
Stratton, Hannah, Fuchs, Heidi, Chen, Yuting, Dunham, Camilla, and Williams, Alison. Thu . "Water and Wastewater Rate Hikes Outpace CPI". United States. doi:10.2172/1377851. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1377851.
@article{osti_1377851,
title = {Water and Wastewater Rate Hikes Outpace CPI},
author = {Stratton, Hannah and Fuchs, Heidi and Chen, Yuting and Dunham, Camilla and Williams, Alison},
abstractNote = {Water and wastewater treatment and delivery is the most capital-intensive of all utility services. Historically underpriced, water and wastewater rates have exhibited unprecedented growth in the past fifteen years. Steep annual increases in water and wastewater rates that outpace the Consumer Price Index (CPI) have increasingly become the norm across the United States. In this paper, we analyze water and wastewater rates across U.S. census regions between 2000 and 2014. We also examine some of the driving factors behind these rate increases, including drought, water source, required infrastructure investment, population patterns, and conservation effects. Our results demonstrate that water and wastewater prices have consistently increased and have outstripped CPI throughout the study period nationwide, as well as within each census region. Further, evaluation of the current and upcoming challenges facing water and wastewater utilities suggests that sharp rate increases are likely to continue in the foreseeable future.},
doi = {10.2172/1377851},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {8}
}