A new EPA report to Congress says the nation's drinking water infrastructure will need $384 billion dollars worth of improvements over the next 20 years, including more than $4 billion in Kansas.
William Carr manages the revolving loan fund that finances drinking water projects in Kansas. He says most of the projects on the list are for transmission and distribution, especially the underground pipes that carry water to homes and businesses.
“Every drinking water, public water supply system in Kansas has pipe.," he says. "You know, it’s underground, it’s never seen. It gets installed, 50-100 years ago, and nobody worries about it until it breaks."
Carr says the needs in Kansas actually go beyond $4.2 billion dollars. That figure only includes projects that would be eligible for funding through the revolving loan program. Carr says water systems need infrastructure upgrades in both large and small communities all across Kansas.