Asset Management is maintaining a desired level of service (what you want your assets to provide) at the lowest life cycle cost (best appropriate cost - not no cost.) Asset Management provides a set of tools and practices that can assist a utility in operating, maintaining, and managing assets in a cost-effective, sustainable fashion. The reasons a utility may wish to operate in this fashion include:
  1. Water and wastewater assets represent a major public or private investment. In small communities, these assets may be the largest investment.
  2. Well-run and efficient infrastructure is important to economic development.
  3. Proper operation and maintenance of a utility is essential for public health and safety.
  4. Utility assets provide an essential customer service.
There are five core components of Asset Management:
  • What is the Current State of the Assets
  • What is the Desired Level of Service
  • Which Assets are Critical to Sustained Performance
  • What is the Best Life Cycle Cost
  • What is the Long-Term Funding Strategy
Each of these core components is described in detail in Chapters 3 through 7. Information regarding implementing Asset Management, the human aspects of Asset Management, and resources to assist utilities is also included in the guidebook.

Additionally, this guidebook includes considerations of energy efficiency throughout each of the components. The process of Energy Efficiency Management follows a similar framework to Asset Management, so following this guidebook will provide the utility with the tools to develop a comprehensive program of managing its assets in a cost-effective, environmentally- sound and energy- efficient manner.
It's mostly using common sense.
--Larry Covington, Picacho, NM


The Asset Management program described in this guidebook is compatible with the Environmental Protection Agency's Advanced Asset Management Training and current international practice in Asset Management. Further information on EPA's training can be found at the following web site:

The international approach can be found in the International Infrastructure Management Manual prepared by the NAMS Group in New Zealand.