Media Contact: Ashley Eiler, (202) 333-4444, [email protected]

Apr 10, 2009

Water security expert participates in 2009 AWWA Water Security Congress

Catalyst Partners principal Vance Taylor joined other industry professionals at the 2009 Water Security Congress yesterday to speak about the recent efforts of the water sector to measure its progress in the security realm.

Taylor detailed the collaboration between the Water Sector Coordinating Council, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop a sector-specific plan for measuring progress under DHS’s National Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP). This group created a national security metrics system centered around 22 distinct measures, and then conducted its first-ever survey of water utilities to get an overall view of the current state of the industry. Data was collected using WaterISAC, the sector’s communication arm.

“We are lucky that the water industry is such a proactive sector – participation in the survey during this first year was moderate, but healthy,” commented Taylor, who formerly oversaw water security policy for the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA). “Ultimately, the goal we have in this effort is to secure our nation’s drinking water and our wastewater infrastructure to keep our water clean and safe.”

The key findings of the water sector’s progress report include:

– More than three-quarters of respondents have incorporated security into their utility planning and design
– Over 90% indicated securing and monitoring perimeters and having physical and procedural controls in place to safeguard chemicals
– 80% restrict access by screening or inspecting individuals at restricted areas
– Over 95% have advanced protocols in place to secure and monitor the shipping, receipt, and storage of chemicals

The full report is available here.

The Water Security Congress is an annual event sponsored by the American Water Works Association (AWWA) that seeks to present the most current information on water security to industry professions and to provide guidance on how to address new and emerging challenges facing the industry.

For more information about the event, please visit the AWWA Congress’s homepage.  

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