The bottled water industry is exposed to regulations from the local level through the international level. The industry as a whole attempts to support the position that bottled water is a premium drinking water product. Regulators set minimum standards. The most conscientious bottlers strive to meet current and anticipated requirements in order to demonstrate that their products provide the highest level of health protection.
List of United States water companies EPA defines a public water system PWS as one that provides water for human consumption through pipes or other constructed conveyances to at least 15 service connections or serves an average of at least 25 people for at least 60 days a year.
The agency has defined three types of PWS: A PWS that supplies water to the same population year-round. A PWS that regularly supplies water to at least 25 of the same people at least six months per year, but not year-round. Some examples are schools, factories, office buildings, and hospitals which have their own water systems.
A PWS that provides water in a place such as a gas station or campground where people do not remain for long periods of time. PWSs are either publicly owned, cooperatives or privately owned,  serving a total of about million people in EPA estimates the number of beneficiaries of community water systems at million in  The United States Geological Survey estimates that "About million people depended on water from public suppliers" in In the latter case they are called multi-utilities.
Bulk water suppliers are entities that manage large aqueducts and sell either treated or untreated water to various users, including utilities. Eighty-nine percent of Americans served by a public water system are served by a public or cooperative entity.
In some cases public utilities span several jurisdictions. Utility cooperatives are a major provider of water services, especially in small towns and rural areas   Private utilities.
The largest private water company in the U. Some utilities in the U.
Other utilities, such as the San Francisco Public Utilities Commissionprovide power in addition to water and sewer services. Other multi-utilities provide power and water services, but no sewer services, such as the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power and the Orlando Utilities Commission.
There are also some utilities that provide only sewer services, such as the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago or the sewer utility in the city of Santa Clara. There are also a few large bulk water suppliers in the arid Southwest of the United States, which sell water to utilities.
Twenty-six cities and water districts serving 18 million people are members of MWD. However, while all investor-owned utilities are subject to tariff regulation, only few public utilities are subjected to the same regulation.
In fact, only 12 states have laws restricting pricing practices by public water and sanitation utilities.
Professional associations include the American Society of Civil Engineers focused on advocacy for state revolving fund and water resource development legislation, American Water Works Association AWWA oriented mainly towards drinking water professionals and the Water Environment Federation WEF geared mainly at wastewater professionals.
The geographical scope of both is greater than the U. AWWA has members in countries,  with a focus on the U. Another example is the Alliance for Water Efficiency AWEwhich was created in with seed funding from the EPA to "advocate for water efficiency research, evaluation, and education" at the national level.
Its Board members "represent water utilities, environmental organizations, plumbing and appliance associations, irrigation manufacturers, the academic community, government, and others. Other issues are concerns about a swiftly retiring workforce, the affordability of water bills for the poor during a recession, and water fluoridation, which is opposed by some mainly on ethical and safety grounds.An analysis to help municipalities and utilities advance their efforts to develop potable reuse projects and inform federal, state and local agencies and key stakeholders about how they can support the expansion of potable water reuse across the United States.
Issues that affect drinking water supply and sanitation in the United States include water scarcity, pollution, a backlog of investment, concerns about the affordability of water for the poorest, and a rapidly retiring workforce.
The states or provinces in North America can-and have-set requirements for municipal and bottled water that are more stringent than those required by either the FDA or the EPA.
Massachusetts and Quebec are examples of where regional standards are of broader scope than federal standards.
Mar 11, · While a harsh national spotlight focuses on the drinking water crisis in Flint, Mich., a USA TODAY NETWORK investigation has identified almost 2, additional water systems spanning all 50 states. Water consumption is declining in the United States based on increasing efficiencies in water management both at water utilities and by users.
However, significant investment will be needed in the coming decades to maintain the quality of drinking water and continuing improvements in . The quality of drinking water in the United States remains high, but legacy and emerging contaminants continue to require close attention.
While water consumption is down, there are still an estimated , water main breaks per year in the United States, wasting over two trillion gallons of treated drinking water.