Report card: Utah earns B’s, C’s, D’s in water infrastructure


reportcard3Utah’s water infrastructure earned B, C, and D grades in an independent review by the Utah Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers. Released Feb. 24, the “2015 Report Card for Utah’s Infrastructure” is the first such assessment of the state’s transportation, water, and waste infrastructure.

Levees scored a D−, the lowest grade on the report card. Canals did slightly better with a D+. Most Utah canals are over 100 years old and have little regulatory oversight. Utah’s 900 aging dams earned a respectable B−, though they are vulnerable to seismic threats and severe weather. The report gave stormwater and wastewater a C+, highlighting the need to control nutrient pollution and upgrade treatment plants. Drinking water earned a C, and major investments are needed to supply water for a growing population.

Overall, Utah’s infrastructure earned a C+. In ASCE report cards, A’s are rare.

The report praises Utah for its stewardship of natural resources, leadership in design-build projects, forward-thinking planning, and embrace of new construction technologies.

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