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Internet of Things and Data Analytics Handbook by Hwaiyu Geng

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28NONREVENUE WATER

KENNETH THOMPSON, BRIAN SKEENS AND JENNIFER LIGGETT

CH2M, Englewood, CO, USA

28.1 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

Nonrevenue water (NRW) is a critical issue facing water utilities around the world. A report by the World Bank defines NRW as “the difference between the volume of water put into a water distribution system and the volume that is billed to customers [1].” NRW may account for 25–50% of the total water supplied and has been found at higher percentages in extreme cases. However, many well‐run and maintained utilities are able to achieve levels of NRW as low as 5%.

28.2 NRW ANATOMY

NRW includes three primary components: unbilled authorized consumption (metered and unmetered), apparent losses (e.g., water theft, meter inaccuracies, data handling errors), real losses (e.g., leakage in mains, service connections, overflows, main breaks). Unbilled authorized consumption includes authorized uses of water for operational purposes such as system flushing, firefighting, or water provided to users at no charge. Apparent losses are defined as water that reaches a user but is not properly measured and for which the utility is not paid. Real losses are defined as water that enters the water distribution system but doesn’t reach a user. Every water system by nature will have some level of real losses.

28.3 ECONOMY AND CONSERVATION

As the demand on drinking water sources increases due to climate change and growing populations, NRW is an important consideration ...

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