Problems with the water supply in Toledo, Ohio, highlight the need for improvement in the nation's water infrastructure, and the best way to play that is by investing in water utilities, an analyst told CNBC.
"What we're looking at is these [bigger] water utilities … to be able to grow by investing in infrastructure, by consolidating the smaller, private systems and hopefully by helping to privatize or work with the municipal systems on solutions to situations like this," Gabelli & Co.'s Tim Winter said in an interview with "Street Signs."
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There are more than 55,000 separate water systems and a majority of them serve customer bases of less than 3,000, he noted. About 80 to 85 percent of the country is served by municipal systems.