During the last few years, the essential nature of clean and reliable drinking water and wastewater services has continually made news. Contaminated drinking water, insufficient and inequitable allocation of funding and resources, cyberattacks, supply scarcity, and an uncertain workforce all have taken their turn in the headlines as widespread problems facing the water sector in the U.S. None of these were wholly new challenges. Shining a spotlight on these problems pointed out where the water sector needed to improve; not always a pleasant experience.

(Originally published in the January 2023 issue of Water Environment & Technology magazine. All rights reserved.)

But the people who work in water responded by increasing their efforts to find solutions. Sometimes that means continuing along the path with existing projects and programs and sometimes that means reinventing how things are done.

As we enter 2023, five specific areas stand out where the water community is poised to make great strides. Throughout the State of the Sector find out what’s on the horizon in terms of

  • funding and financing in light of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law,
  • evolving PFAS regulations and technologies,
  • water equity and environmental justice for customers and the water workforce,
  • safeguarding the cybersecurity of water systems, and
  • circular water economy practices to tackle supply issues.


This section is filled with the voices and perspectives of expert water sector leaders on how each of these topics can and should develop throughout the upcoming year. They run the spectrum — engineers, regulators, utility leaders, technology manufacturers, people managers, and policymakers — but there is always room for more voices. As you read the State of the Sector, we encourage each of you to jot down your thoughts and share them with us.

Whether you seek to express support for an idea, present an alternative path, or point out something that you feel is missing completely or make your own prediction for what 2023 has in store, we want to hear from you. Send your messages to magazine@wef.org.

Download a PDF of the
WE&T State of the Sector


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WEFTEC Now features timely coverage of major events leading up to, during, and after the conference. This resource will become an enduring record of past WEFTEC conferences as well as provide notice of upcoming events and opportunities.

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