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Environment

U.S. water supply concerns rising

by Jessica Morrison
March 28, 2016 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 94, ISSUE 13

EPA chief Gina McCarthy last week delivered a dire message to public water utility experts: The U.S. water supply infrastructure is aging, and states are not prepared to face current and future water challenges, which include scarcity and threats from emerging contaminants. “We have to continue to push together to make the investments we need to make and to understand how we can protect all of our communities,” she said. McCarthy’s comments came the day before the White House held a Water Summit as part of an effort to address water quality and supply issues of U.S. communities. The event highlighted research as well as new and ongoing commitments from federal agencies, universities, and the private sector to support water sustainability and infrastructure management. As part of the summit, the federal agencies that make up the National Nanotechnology Initiative announced a new program to use nanomaterials to address water challenges. Goals of the initiative include increasing water availability, improving the efficiency of water use, and enabling next-generation water monitoring systems with nanotechnology.

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