Water Pipe Networks Performance Assessment: Benchmarking Eight Cases Across the EU Mediterranean Basin
The high level of the non-revenue water (NRW: water not generating revenues) is a well-acknowledged problem water utilities are straggling with in areas facing water scarcity. High NRW values jeopardize the sustainability of water utilities, especially in cases, where these values exceed 50 % of the System Input Volume. WATERLOSS project developed a Decision Support System to help water utility managers design the most effective/efficient NRW reduction strategy. The project's first step was to evaluate the performance of the water distribution systems selected as case studies. The paper presents the respective results of eight cases from Cyprus, Greece, Italy, France and Spain, based on a modified International Water Association Water Balance adapted to the water pricing practices met across the Mediterranean (high Fixed Charge included in the water tariffs). The results revealed that although almost all cases experience high NRW levels, the high Fixed Charge reduces the actual revenue losses, thus providing a perfect excuse to the managers of the local water utilities do almost nothing to address the actual extent of the NRW problem in their systems.
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