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EPA Researchers Help Prepare Drinking Water Utilities for Natural Disasters

Natural disasters such as floods, drought, hurricanes, winter storms, and earthquakes can disrupt access to clean drinking water. Being able to quickly respond and reduce loss of service is an important characteristic of a community’s resiliency and the goal of water utilities across the country. To help communities and their drinking water utilities, researchers from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Sandia National Laboratories developed the Water Network Tool for Resilience (WNTR), a comprehensive scientific software package to help assess a drinking water systems’ resilience to natural disasters. The software improves upon already available capabilities by fully integrating hydraulic and water quality simulation, damage estimates and response actions, and resilience metrics into a single platform. The software is available as an open source software package and can be applied to a wide range of disruptive incidents and repair strategies.

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