Shadi Eskaf is a Senior Project Director for the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina.
Previous blog posts (here and here) discussed the fact that per capita water consumption is declining. The financial ramifications can be significant, since charges for customer sales constitute the single largest source of revenue for water utilities. Has the downward trend in water consumption translated into declining revenues for utilities? Anecdotally, we have heard from several utilities in Canada and the United States that the decline in water use has caused revenues to fall short of projections in recent years. Analyzing how revenues for 2,838 utilities changed from one year to the next in six states spread across the United States helps answer the question of whether revenues are declining.