Additional authors include Joakim Scharp, Consultant, Water and Wastewater Strategic Management, Sweden and Anna Dahlman Petri, Department Manager, Water and Wastewater Strategic Management, Sweden.
Access to clean water and sanitation is one of the cornerstones of modern society, and providing them a core responsibility of local government. In Sweden today, most historical large water investments have been fully depreciated, and access to water is taken for granted. With aging infrastructure in need of repair and consumers accustomed to low prices, many municipalities are in need of efficient management for their network assets.
The question is not merely how much we should charge for water, but how we should determine which water services to charge for. A key variable is how our costs and profits will change over time, and what impact this will have on us. To ensure long-term supply, assets and tariffs must be managed in an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable manner. The municipality can’t lose money in the long-term water services should be available to everyone and the cost of water can support adequate treatment of both water and wastewater.