Washington – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is seeking public input on the development of an action plan to accelerate the application of water reuse as a safe, reliable, and sustainable way to meet the country’s current and future water demands.

“To meet the country’s most pressing water resources challenges, EPA recognizes the need for coordinated federal leadership,” said David Ross, U.S. EPA’s assistant administrator for the Office of Water. “Working with our federal partners, we are looking to tap the expertise of our nation’s farmers, utilities, industry, NGOs, scientists, and others to craft a Water Reuse Action Plan that helps our country better prepare for current and future water challenges and meet the water needs of generations to come.”|

To facilitate public input on the Water Reuse Action Plan, EPA released a Discussion Framework for Development of a Draft Water Reuse Action Plan (Discussion Framework) which provides helpful background, context, and details on considerations the Water Reuse Action Plan could address. EPA invites ideas and input on all aspects of water reuse, including but not limited to:

  • Specific actions that can be taken now and in the future by federal agencies, states, tribes, local governments, water utilities, industry, agriculture, and others;
  • Key relevant sources of information, such as literature, about water reuse, not already identified in the Discussion Framework;
  • Examples of water reuse, both past and future, which demonstrate opportunities and barriers;
  • Concepts for applying water reuse strategies within integrated water resources management planning; and,
  • Ways water reuse can improve water resiliency, security and sustainability through a more diverse water portfolio.

EPA will accept public input for the draft Water Reuse Action Plan through July 1, 2019, online via https://www.regulations.gov using Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2019-0174. After consideration of the input received, EPA will release a draft Water Reuse Action Plan for public comment in conjunction with the 2019 WateReuse Symposium in San Diego, Calif.

Background

Water reuse, sometimes referred to as water recycling, can be used to meet water demands and mitigate the risks posed by droughts. Recycled water can be used for a wide variety of applications including agriculture and irrigation, potable water supplies, groundwater replenishment, industrial processes, and environmental restoration.

The development of EPA’s Water Reuse Action Plan is part of a larger Administration-wide effort to address the nation’s most pressing water resource management challenges. The Water Reuse Action Plan will leverage and complement other federal efforts to advance water reuse, including EPA’s priority to finance water reuse and recycling projects through the 2019 Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act Notice of Funding Availability, and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Water Security Grand Challenge.

For more information on the Water Reuse Action Plan visit: www.epa.gov/waterreuse/water-reuse-action-plan.

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