The Importance of Water Management System Scalability
Let’s face it: If you’re a modern-day water provider, you’re being asked to do more and more with less and less. You’re being required to cut back on water consumption, which means essentially selling less water. Unfortunately, water sales constitute the bulk of your operating revenue. It’s already a daunting challenge that will only become more so in the near future.
Our last few posts have discussed the various pressures being put on water districts to conserve water themselves and to empower their customers to do the same. As a result, customers are becoming more aware of their water usage, and they are increasingly seeking more granular data.
Consumers know that understanding how and when they use water is the information that guides their future usage decisions. And they are demanding that data closer to real time than they can get by just reading their history on a water bill.
That means purveyors need to serve up robust usage data along with your water. And that means your system must be able to provide this information now and into the future, regardless how much your customer base and service area . Scalability for your system isn’t just important, it’s mission-critical for water purveyors right now, as you consider capital purchases…especially for metering.
Smart City/Smart Agency Initiatives
Clearly, this calls for a data-gathering and reporting network to serve as the backbone of a system that will allow customers to access that information as they need it. As districts look to repair or even replace their meter infrastructure, for example, it makes sense to look for technologically advanced hardware that that facilitates this type of data gathering and reporting beyond traditional AMI functions.
That’s where equipment such as the Subeca AMIoT System® comes in. So much more than a simple water meter, the Subeca System consists of four essential elements that work together to form the aforementioned infrastructure backbone. Together, the system components create a foundation which districts can add other municipal, commercial, institutional and residential functionalities. This is the definition of Smart City IoT technology.
From a residential standpoint, such technology might include a smart irrigation controller or ground moisture sensors linked to local weather stations, to indicate whether or not a customer needs to water their lawn. From a district or agency standpoint, such functions might include monitoring water quality or being able to see your system pressure in real time.
The possibilities for exploiting Smart City IoT technologies are really limited only by your imagination. So why simply replace existing meters with an outdated, AMI-only system, when you can take your entire water system into the future with the same investment in a Subeca AMIoT metering platform, at a minimal cost-to-value ratio and no disruption of water service to your customers?
With the Subeca AMIoT System, you can act today, while laying a foundation for tomorrow.
Slowing A Downward Revenue Trend Starts With Stopping the Loss of What You Already Have
No one needs to tell you that non-revenue water loss is an increasing problem for water purveyors. But with California’s new conservation mandate, it has moved from the Simply Annoying category into the Unaffordable Luxury column. If you want to decrease the downward trend on revenue, you must first stop the bleeding through the assets you already own.
There isn’t a water system in America that doesn’t lose water from its distribution system. Finding and repairing leaks will be the most direct way to prevent non-revenue water loss. But that’s only possible when you’ve got the sensors and devices to collect that data in place, then relay it through the backbone to organize, visualize and analyze that data so you can take timely, planned, intelligent action on it.
But What About Rate Increases?
The fact is, there is a limit to the tolerance of both ratepayers and public officials to rate increases. You’re going to have to find ways to become more efficient, and to demonstrate what you’re doing to cut operating costs, without compromising service or public health standards.
The IoT capabilities of the Subeca AMIoT System, with its open but secure LoRa network, mean that as IoT solutions emerge and can be integrated into a water distribution system, you’ll reduce labor demand, because so much more of the data gathering, reporting and analyzing will become automated, performed by the system’s hardware and software.
You can purchase a traditional AMI system for your metering—and only your metering. Or you can invest in Subeca’s AMIoT platform, which will continue to add value and a return on your investment for decades to come. If you are considering an investment into an automated metering program, you should also be thinking about value outside of the meter box.