Water and Health
Access to safe, affordable water is a cornerstone of a healthy community.
Every day, we use water for drinking, cooking, bathing, growing food, and so much more. It’s an essential part of life. But more than 2 million people in the United States still don’t have running water or a working toilet. Millions more are saddled with unaffordable or contaminated water.
While the majority of our water systems deliver safe drinking water, in every state, there are communities that lack access to clean water they can afford. More often than not, these are places where poor and Black and Brown people live. A long legacy of discriminatory policies and structural racism, including the historic lack of investment in communities of color, has created these inequities.
Yet this water crisis can be solved. By upgrading our aging infrastructure and making water more affordable, we can make sure everyone, everywhere can turn on the tap without a second thought.
Water keeps our communities healthy. We must protect the right to water and push for water equity in our efforts to advocate for policy change. Funders can also utilize impact investing to strengthen water infrastructure.
Draining, a report from DigDeep, puts a price tag on the number of people without water—and the incredible return on investment that could be generated by closing the water access gap.
NRDC’s Water Affordability Advocacy Toolkit and Aspen Institute’s Toward a National Water Affordability Strategy report lay out a blueprint for ensuring that water services are affordable for all households and communities.
Local groups including Community Water Center, Little Village Environmental Justice Organization, and the Greater Jackson Community Water Watch confront issues of contaminated water and protect the right to safe, clean water.
Communities Unlimited is helping small Southern water and wastewater systems unlock federal infrastructure financing to ensure healthy water.
US Water Alliance’s Recovering Stronger initiative aims to transform how we view, value, and manage our nation’s water systems.
Impact Investing Opportunities to Advance Water, Health and Equity, a report from the Environmental Policy Innovation Center, outlines impact investment strategies for financing improvements in water infrastructure.
From the Blog
Three Lessons on How Communities Can Support the Struggle for Water Justice
Bringing Clean, Running Water to the Navajo Nation
Broken promises and structural racism have deprived New Mexico’s Navajo Nation of safe, running water for generations. A Navajo woman shares how she is actively changing this reality, one family at a time.