Water-Energy Pathways

Yucaipa Valley Water District Recycled Water Pump Station

photo by Caroline Minasian

Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Water Treatment Plant

photo by Larry Berger

Orange County Water District Groundwater Replenishment System

photo by Water Energy Innovations

Irvine Ranch Water District Recycled Water Demonstration Garden

photo by Caroline Minasian

Houweling Nurseries Rainwater Capture Basin with Solar Roof

photo by Jonathan Bower

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The water and energy sectors are natural partners: each depends on the other to reliably and economically provide products and services essential to achieving their respective missions. Yet, although numerous studies indicate that considerable incremental resource, economic, and environmental benefits could be achieved through integrated management of water and energy resources, many hurdles will need to be overcome before the multiple benefits of the water-energy nexus can be realized.

There has been no lack of innovation – over the past decade, many stakeholder forums convened across the U.S. to identify creative nexus opportunities. Neither is there lack of interest and commitment – both the water and the energy sectors have willingly come to the table to collaborate on strategies for leveraging the nexus to achieve the next generation of resource efficiency. In fact, the key barriers to implementation lie primarily in well-established traditions of separate planning and management of water and energy resources.

Ultimately, maximizing the joint benefits of water and energy will require new policy and regulatory frameworks that enable optimizing investments across both resources, and potentially also across the multiple utilities, agencies and jurisdictions charged with developing and delivering these resources. In order to do that effectively, new metrics and tools are needed that enable evaluating multiple value streams from cross-cutting programs.

Water Energy Innovations is dedicated to building pathways to implementation that help to achieve the full potential of our nation’s water-energy nexus. Through this website, we will provide information about water-energy initiatives across the country with the goal of helping to foster collaboration. We will also highlight best-in-class policies, programs, practices and projects to help identify and promote proven strategies.

 

 


 

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