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The latest news and announcements from Mayor London N. Breed

Mayor Lee’s Statement on Jobs & Economic Impact of Water Sector

Mayor Edwin M. Lee today issued the following statement on the newly released study The National Economic and Labor Impacts of the Water Utility Sector on how water infrastructure projects are putting people to work and growing local and regional economies:

“Water is the backbone of our U.S. economy, and without it, businesses could not operate and cities could not thrive. However, an estimated $4.8 trillion in capital investment is needed to bring water and wastewater systems to a state of good repair. That is why our City, through the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC), joins with 30 of the largest U.S. water and wastewater utilities to ask Washington to invest with us in the hundreds of billions of dollars necessary to strengthen America’s water infrastructure.

San Francisco is fortunate to have one of the cleanest, most efficient water and power systems in the world. We have made significant investments over the past ten years to systematically repair, replace and upgrade the seismic reliability of our Hetch Hetchy Regional Water System. Through the Water System Improvement Program, we have replaced the most aged parts of our system, we have increased its seismic reliability, and we have created more than 11,000 jobs that helped keep our economy growing during the great Recession. And we will continue this investment in our residents, our businesses and our City through the Sewer System Improvement Program. With more than 60 percent of our City’s sewers more than 70 years old, the SFPUC has outlined $7.9 billion in capital needs for water and wastewater infrastructure over the next decade. This investment will generate $18 billion in economic output, train whole new workforces in skilled trades and ultimately support thousands of jobs to provide fresh stimulus to our local and regional economies.

What lies ahead is not a challenge; it is, in fact, an opportunity, especially as San Francisco and the rest of California deals with one of the most serious water shortages in our history. Investing in our water and wastewater systems will prepare us for the next big earthquake and other disasters.”