EPA has opened a 90-day public comment period on the Water Reuse Plan
On Sept. 10, at the 34th Annual WateReuse Symposium in San Diego, Calif., the U.S. EPA announced the release of a draft National Water Reuse Action Plan. According to EPA, the plan identifies priority actions and the leadership and collaboration that is needed between governmental and non-governmental organizations to implement these actions.
“Forty states anticipate experiencing freshwater shortages in certain regions within their borders over the next decade,” said EPA’s Assistant Administrator for Water David Ross. “Diversifying our nation’s water portfolio must be a nationwide priority, and water reuse has the potential to ensure the viability of our water economy for generations to come.”
The draft National Water Reuse Action Plan is the first initiative of this magnitude that is coordinated across the water sector, according to EPA. It was built upon extensive outreach, research and prior engagement with the water sector. The draft plan incorporates federal, state, tribal and local water perspectives and highlights key actions that support consideration and implementation of water reuse. EPA’s goal is to issue a final plan that will include clear commitments and milestones for actions that will further water reuse to bolster the sustainability, security and resilience of the nation’s water resources.
“Ensuring reliable water supplies for the future takes a combination of innovation approaches, from advancing critical infrastructure projects to implementing new conservation strategies. Water reuse is an important component of Reclamation’s all-of-the-above model, and we are committed to continuing our investment in water reuse for local communities throughout the West,” said Brenda Burman, Commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation.
The plan also was applauded by the WaterReuse Assn.
“The National Water Reuse Action Plan will be a game changer,” said Patricia Sinicropi, Executive Director of the WaterReuse Assn. “WateReuse commends EPA and Assistant Administrator Ross for bringing together the federal family and moving forward a bold plan for water recycling. Communities across the country are incorporating water reuse into their water management strategies as a proven method for ensuring a safe, reliable, locally controlled water supply--essential for livable communities, healthy environments, robust economies and a high quality of life. We look forward to working with EPA, other federal agencies, and the broader stakeholder community to further develop and strengthen the Action Plan in the months ahead.”
EPA seeks to collaborate with all stakeholder groups on this plan and is soliciting public input through a 90-day public comment period. For more information, including opportunities to engage with EPA on this effort, visit https://www.epa.gov/waterreuse/water-reuse-action-plan.
Read EPA's full news release here.