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Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Department: Championing Safe Drinking Water through Advanced Lead and Copper Pipe Management


In December 2020, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) introduced a significant update to the Lead and Copper Rule, a crucial component of the Safe Drinking Water Act, aiming to enhance the safety of drinking water provided by public water systems. To achieve this goal, water systems were mandated to identify and disclose the locations of lead service lines for both public and privately-owned service lines. This inventory serves as a crucial starting point for Lead Service Line Replacement, helping to mitigate the harmful effects of lead and copper contamination in drinking water. Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Department has emerged as a pioneer in this field, providing innovative solutions to map, inventory, and create lead and copper pipe databases, ensuring communities have access to clean and safe drinking water.

The Importance of Identifying Lead and Copper Pipes

Lead contamination in drinking water is a pressing public health concern. It occurs when pipes and plumbing fixtures containing lead corrode, especially in water with high acidity or low mineral content. Among the sources of lead, service lines with lead pipes that connect homes to the water main pose the most significant risk. Exposure to lead can lead to various health issues, such as anemia, nervous system damage, kidney and brain damage, and, in extreme cases, even death. Infants and young children are particularly vulnerable to lead exposure.

In response to the gravity of this issue, the Lead and Copper Rule Revision mandated water systems to locate and disclose the positions of lead service lines, ensuring transparency and public awareness. These inventories play a critical role in initiating necessary Lead Service Line Replacements, reducing the potential for lead and copper contamination and safeguarding public health.

Sunrise Engineering’s ESRI® Partnership and Cutting-Edge Solutions

Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Department is at the forefront of advancing safe drinking water initiatives. As an ESRI® Partner, they harness the power of ESRI® software to develop innovative solutions that provide enhanced insights into water systems. Utilizing the city’s managed ArcGIS online systems, Sunrise Engineering creates comprehensive lead and copper inventories of service lines, allowing for seamless integration with existing GIS data.

The GIS solutions offered by Sunrise Engineering are designed to be user-friendly and efficient, allowing water system personnel to edit, view, and share critical information with various stakeholders, including operations staff, city councils, board members, and decision-makers. This approach fosters collaborative decision-making, streamlines water infrastructure management, and ensures the delivery of safe drinking water to communities.

The Value of Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Solutions

Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Department comprises a team of over 30 dedicated professionals with extensive experience delivering high-quality GIS services. Their expertise in ESRI®-based solutions is further reaffirmed by their achievement of ArcGIS Online and Local Government Specialty recognitions. In addition to their lead and copper solutions, Sunrise Engineering offers a wide array of GIS mapping services tailored to diverse needs, demonstrating their versatility and commitment to serving clients.

Let’s explore some of the key benefits offered by Sunrise Engineering’s GIS solutions:

  1. Focused Inventory and Maintenance: By providing an accurate inventory of lead and copper pipes, Sunrise Engineering’s solutions facilitate the identification of maintenance and repair recommendations. This proactive approach helps water systems address potential issues before they escalate.
  2. Long-term Work and Budget Planning: The comprehensive database created by Sunrise Engineering allows water systems to develop long-term work and budget plans, optimizing resource allocation and cost-effective infrastructure management.
  3. Water System Visualization: Sunrise Engineering’s GIS mapping and visualization tools provide water system operators with clear insights into their infrastructure and distribution networks. This visual representation aids in identifying potential vulnerabilities and making informed decisions.
  4. Efficient Administration of Service Line Information: The GIS solutions enable the efficient administration of service line data, ensuring that water system records are accurate, up-to-date, and readily accessible when needed.
  5. Coordinated Lead Service Replacement: Armed with precise data, Sunrise Engineering assists water systems in effectively coordinating lead service replacement efforts. By prioritizing areas based on risk levels, resources are directed where they are needed the most, maximizing the impact of lead abatement efforts.
  6. Management Dashboards: Interactive dashboards give water system managers real-time access to critical metrics and performance indicators. This empowers them to monitor system health and promptly respond to emerging challenges.
  7. Public Engagement and Community Involvement: Sunrise Engineering’s GIS solutions include tools for public information dissemination and community involvement, promoting transparency and building trust among residents.
  8. Mobile Access for Asset Management: The GIS solutions offer mobile accessibility, enabling water system managers to efficiently manage water assets on the go. This flexibility enhances operational efficiency and responsiveness.
  9. Detailed Mapping and Resource Identification: The GIS solutions provide detailed mapping and resource identification, empowering water systems to plan and respond effectively during emergencies and unforeseen events.


Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Department’s unwavering commitment to improving the safety and quality of drinking water sets a remarkable precedent in the industry. Through their ESRI® partnership and cutting-edge GIS solutions, they have emerged as leaders in mapping, inventorying, and creating databases of lead and copper pipes. By assisting water systems in complying with the Lead and Copper Rule Revision, Sunrise Engineering plays a pivotal role in protecting public health and preserving the well-being of communities.

Beyond their lead and copper solutions, Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Department continues to provide a diverse range of GIS mapping services tailored to their clients’ unique needs. Their team of skilled professionals, bolstered by their ESRI® expertise, ensures that communities receive the support and solutions necessary to thrive.

As we move forward, it is essential to recognize the critical role played by Sunrise Engineering in championing safe drinking water initiatives. Through collaboration, innovation, and unwavering dedication, they are shaping a healthier and safer future for communities nationwide.

For more information about Sunrise Engineering’s GIS Department and their lead and copper solutions, please visit: https://sunrise-eng.com/experience/gis/lcr/