Water Sector Seeks Applications for Utility of the Future Today Recognition Program

May 21, 2020

The application period is open for the Utility of the Future Today recognition program, which honors water resource recovery facilities for community engagement, watershed stewardship, and recovery of resources such as water, energy, and nutrients. The Utility of the Future is a model for utilities of all sizes to achieve more efficient operations, enhanced productivity, and long-term sustainability. Since the program launched in 2016, 118 utilities have been recognized with the honor.

“WRF-sponsored research has served as the foundation of many of the forward-leaning practices that define a Utility of the Future,” said Peter Grevatt, WRF CEO. “We are pleased to participate as partners to help take this important program to the next level!”

The Utility of the Future activity areas focus on the key building blocks of this transformation:

  • recovery and new uses of a range of resources;
  • engagement as a leader in the full water cycle and broader social, economic, and environmental sustainability of the community;
  • engagement in the community and formation of partnerships necessary for success when operating outside of the traditional span of the utility; and
  • transformation of the internal utility culture in support of these innovations.

Public and private water sector utilities of all sizes that can demonstrate achievement of the application requirements are encouraged to apply by July 17 at 5 p.m. EDT. Applicants must have no major permit violations in the year prior to the submission date of their applications. Honorees will be formally recognized during an awards ceremony at WEFTEC 2020.

Since the Utility of the Future concept was introduced in 2013, many utilities have successfully implemented new and creative programs to address local wastewater technical and community challenges. The recognition program was launched in 2016 by the National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA), the Water Environment Federation (WEF), The Water Research Foundation (WRF), and the WateReuse Association —with input from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

To learn more, visit https://www.wef.org/utility-of-the-future/ or contact UtilityRecognition@wef.org.

About WRF

The Water Research Foundation (WRF) is the leading not-for-profit research cooperative that advances the science of water to protect public health and the environment. Governed by utilities, WRF delivers scientifically sound research solutions and knowledge to serve our subscribers and stakeholders in all areas of drinking water, wastewater, stormwater, and reuse.