Water Reuse

1% of the world’s water supply is fresh water. CWEA believes water reuse is an important practice that ensures there is plenty of supply to go around. Highly treated recycled water can be used for irrigation and industrial purposes. Our members also design and operate advanced water treatment facilities that can further treat recycled water so it meets drinking water standards. Direct potable reuse (DPR) is the future water supply California needs!

This section is generously supported by

Hazen & Sawyer


You may also like:     One Water   |    Direct Potable Reuse   |   Utilities of the Future

  • NEWS

      Following a tour of the Syphon Reservoir Improvement Project at the Irvine Ranch Water District today, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland and Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Camille Calimlim Touton announced the allocation of $309.8 million in funding from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and $1 million in appropriated funding for the planning, design and...

    • NEWS

        VALLEY WATER Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center City/population served: Santa Clara County’s 2 million residents Plant commissioned: March 2014   FLOW RATES Average daily flow: 8 MGD Upgrade up to 9 MGD   TREATMENT PROCESS Microfiltration, reverse osmosis, and ultraviolet disinfection. Recycled Water Usage Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center (SVAWPC) is designed to...

      • NEWS

          East Valley Water District held a community ribbon cutting to officially open the Sterling Natural Resource Center (SNRC) and celebrate the completion of the new community facility. Over 1,300 people enjoyed the event activities, which included a free community concert, food truck vendors, and facility tours. “East Valley Water District made a commitment to the...

        • NEWS

            On June 1st, the East County Advanced Water Purification Program broke ground, marking an important milestone for the project, East San Diego County, the region and the entire water industry.Program representatives, elected officials and water industry leaders gathered at the future site of the treatment facility in Santee to celebrate the Program that will create a new, local, sustainable and...

          • NEWS

              Join the water reuse and enhanced source control track at the 2022 P3S Conference in Long Beach. Thursday’s session is moderated by Joshua Balentine, Brown & Caldwell, and features Kristel Baumgardner-Kranz, Carollo Engineers and Kevin Hardy, NWRI. Learn more > What’s driving the need for enhanced source control research and regulations? AB 574 requires the...

            • NEWS

                Today, the first operating advanced water purification facility in San Diego County was officially dedicated in the City of Oceanside. Elected officials and water leaders throughout southern California commemorated the milestone aptly celebrated on “World Water Day.” Pure Water Oceanside purifies recycled water to create a new local source of high-quality drinking water that is...

              • NEWS

                  Governor Gavin Newsom visited a Metropolitan Water District of Southern California water recycling facility to discuss the administration’s response to the ongoing megadrought affecting the western United States. January through March were the driest first three months in the state’s recorded history, the state’s largest reservoirs are currently at half of their historical averages, and...

                • NEWS

                    The City of Santa Monica has taken a significant step toward a self-reliant water future as expansions to the Arcadia Water Treatment Plant (WTP) and restorations to the Olympic Well Field break ground. The key water infrastructure improvements are a component of the City’s goal of becoming water self-sufficient by 2023. Santa Monica’s water system...

                  • NEWS

                      This opinion article originally appeared in the Marin Independent Journal newspaper and website. Subscription required. Republished with permission. We are water, literally, by weight and so much more. It’s the sparkle in your eye, the sweat on your brow and the blood in your veins. All life and communities are totally dependent on a healthy water...

                    • NEWS

                          Late this summer, the water features in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, as well as the irrigation systems at the nearby Lincoln Park golf course, will begin using recycled water from the Westside Enhanced Water Recycling Project located at the Oceanside Water Pollution Control Plant on The Great Highway.  The new $214 million plant will...

                      • NEWS

                          In 2010, the Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District (Regional San) faced a daunting task—upgrading its wastewater treatment process to tertiary to meet new National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit requirements. That meant removing nearly all ammonia and nitrates from more than 100 millions of gallons of wastewater received every day. To meet the requirements,...

                        • NEWS

                            When an ad for San Diego tourism comes on, you’re guaranteed to see clips of people running on one of their world-famous beaches. Clips of people riding surfboards, paddling around in the Bay or a slow camera pan of sun-kissed water and a sandy beach. San Diego is a water wonderland, with “70 miles of...

                          • NEWS

                              With a tweet on January 4th, the City of Oceanside officially announced its brand-new advanced water purification facility was operational. Kicking off 2022 with another large-scale water reuse facility serving California. The project, called Pure Water Oceanside, is the first AWTF to become operational in the San Diego region and will purify recycled water to...

                            • NEWS

                                On Friday, November 5, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (H.R. 3684). This bill will provide nearly $1.2 trillion in funding for the nation’s infrastructure. Approximately, $550 billion of the total is new funding to be spent during the next five years, and almost $51 billion is allocated to...

                              • NEWS

                                  For member Tony Pollak, the pandemic and sudden chlorine shortage that hit this spring have pushed his operations team to redouble their efforts. Tony is the Assistant Deputy Director of Operations for Western Municipal Water District in Riverside County. In late May, the District’s chlorine supplier informed them a west coast shortage would delay deliveries....

                                • NEWS

                                    On June 24th, WateReuse California submitted comments on the Water Board’s draft Direct Potable Reuse regulations. The coalition letter included ACWA, CUWA, CA-NV Section of AWWA and CASA. WRCA developed these comments after holding a webcast and panel discussion in April to review the draft regulations and solicit comments. A DPR Working Group was formed that assisted...

                                  • NEWS

                                       View LA Sanitation and Environment’s project webpage to learn more.

                                    • NEWS

                                        The Las Gallinas Valley Sanitary District is excited to announce a significant milestone in its multi-year, $64 million Secondary Treatment Plant Upgrade and Recycled Water Expansion Project. Phase 1 of the project has been completed as of this week. A key element of Phase 1 is the expansion of the plant’s recycled water facility, to...

                                      • NEWS

                                          A recycled water and groundwater recovery project that will produce up to 750 million gallons of water a year for the city of Santa Monica will receive up to $19.6 million from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, following a vote today by the agency’s board of directors. With funding from Metropolitan’s Local Resources...

                                        • NEWS

                                            This content is available only for CWEA members. Click here to login. Last September, nitrification came to a sudden halt at the Water Resource Recovery Facility in San Luis Obispo. While plant staff has come up with a couple of potential solutions, and the plant is nitrifying again, the real cause and cure remain somewhat...

                                          • NEWS

                                              The new documentary film Brave Blue World examines how new technologies and innovations can create a more sustainable water future. It’s important to convey a sense of hope and spirit of optimism for water. The film includes interviews with a variety of water experts, as well as high-profile advocates Matt Damon and Jaden Smith. By...

                                            • NEWS

                                                From the State Water Board… The National Water Research Institute (NWRI) convened a panel of experts to provide recommendations on enhanced industrial source control for DPR. The Expert Panel has submitted their recommendations to the State Water Board in March 2020. Their report is available to download here: Download the report Enhanced Source Control Recommendations...

                                              • NEWS

                                                  Announcement from the State Water Board… NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the State Water Board will accept public comment on the Addendum to A Proposed Framework for Regulating Direct Potable Reuse in California, 2nd Edition (Framework). The State Water Board will provide an opportunity for the public to present oral comments at a public workshop....

                                                • NEWS

                                                    Construction of Escondido’s $65 million Membrane Filtration Reverse Osmosis Facility for Agriculture (MFRO Facility) commenced recently, marking a milestone in the City’s goal of providing agriculture growers a high-quality irrigation supply and easing the burden on its wastewater infrastructure. The MFRO Facility will treat a portion of the City’s existing Title 22 recycled water supply...

                                                  • NEWS

                                                      The Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District (Regional San) has completed a project that provides one million gallons of recycled water per day to the Sacramento Power Authority Cogeneration Plant located in south Sacramento. The recycled water is being used at the cogeneration plant’s cooling tower and replaces the use of potable water—protecting this valuable resource. The potable water saved equates...

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                                                        1986-1992: California endures one of its longest droughts. 1989: Earle Hartling, a water reuse coordinator with the Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts, begins discussions with Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District (Upper District) about a water purification and replenishment project to help refill the declining local aquifer. 1991: Suffering from severe water restrictions, the...

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                                                          Converting Waste to Resource The Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant (HWRP), located in Playa Del Rey, CA, is one of the largest reclamation plants in the nation, treating an average of 260 million gallons per day (MGD) to full secondary standards. HWRP currently treats 82 percent of Los Angeles’ wastewater and discharges most of its effluent...

                                                        • NEWS

                                                            This article is part of our water reuse coverage, supported by Hazen & Sawyer > The California state Water Board is beginning the development of Direct Potable Reuse (DPR) statewide regulations by assembling an Expert Panel as required by AB 574 (Quirk-2017). This panel is expected to assist the Water Board’s Division of Drinking Water...

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                                                              This article is part of our water reuse coverage, supported by Hazen & Sawyer > Public water supplies in California come from groundwater and surface water in a wide range of locations and with characteristics that reflect the geographical diversity of the state. Factors such as population growth and extended droughts are stressing these supplies....

                                                            • NEWS

                                                                  We are living in a hotter, drier California. 2020 is on track to be one of the hottest on record. Seven of the ten most destructive wildfires in California’s history have burned in the last five years.  And, California has only recently emerged from one of the worst droughts in 500 years.    Direct Potable Reuse (DPR) is a source of local supply to help blunt the impacts of climate change and create more than...

                                                              • NEWS

                                                                  The Advanced Water Treatment Operator Certification was developed by water professionals, for water professionals and jointly administered by CA-NV AWWA and CWEA. Professional certification is different than a training or educational program. Training programs offer a certificate of attendance when an individual completes the coursework, but they do not generally award a credential or require...

                                                                • NEWS

                                                                    The Advanced Water Treatment Operator Certification was developed by water professionals, for water professionals and jointly administered by CA-NV AWWA and CWEA. Professional certification is different than a training or educational program. Training programs offer a certificate of attendance when an individual completes the coursework, but they do not generally award a credential or require...

                                                                  • NEWS

                                                                      Congratulations to the 65 Utility of the Future Today honorees for 2020!   This is the fifth year of the Utility of the Future Today (UotFT) program and saw the greatest number of applicants and honorees. These honorees have received a Certificate of Recognition and/or a UotFT banner or a 2020 flag.  This year, as a...

                                                                    • NEWS

                                                                        Southern California took a major step forward today on the path to developing a new sustainable water source from purified wastewater as Metropolitan Water District’s Board of Directors voted to begin environmental planning work on what would be one of the largest advanced water treatment plants in the world. The approval marks a significant milestone...

                                                                      • NEWS

                                                                          This article first-appeared in the Los Angeles City Historical Society newsletter. Reprinted here with permission. The catchy phrase toilet-to-tap often appears in stories about recycling, despite recent widespread use of reclaimed water that is pumped into groundwater aquifers in Southern California. Even the New York Times in a recent story about recycling referred to the...

                                                                        • NEWS

                                                                            NEW ~ Watch Brave Blue World on Netflix, then join our March 30th, 11:00 a.m. panel discussion hosted by Pacific Institute and CWEA. Learn more and register > A recording of our October 14th Brave Blue World panel discussion. A new documentary film titled Brave Blue World examines how new technologies and innovations can create...

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                                                                              Albert Robles Center (ARC) for Water Recycling and Environmental Learning has been awarded LEED Platinum Certification, the highest rating offered to environmentally sustainable buildings. Only 5.7 percent of LEED projects in the United States have achieved this distinguished designation. The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program rates the environmental sustainability of projects based on...

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                                                                                  Hear from the CWEA Engineering and Research award winners on their projects that won first place this year. Engineering Achievement of the Year: City of Paso Robles Wastewater Treatment Plant “Tertiary Treatment Facilities Project and Nutrient Harvesting System” In 2019, the City of Paso Robles completed two projects at its wastewater treatment plant. One...

                                                                              • NEWS

                                                                                  Regional San’s landmark recycled water program—previously known as the South County Ag Program—has been rebranded. Now known as Harvest Water, the program will be one of the largest water recycling projects in California and will deliver up to 50,000-acre feet per year of tertiary-treated recycled water to an estimated 16,000 acres of farm and habitat...

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                                                                                    After four years of work, the Advanced Water Treatment Operator® (AWTO®) certification program is now complete and launched by the California-Nevada Section of the American Water Works Association (CA-NV AWWA) and the California Water Environment Association (CWEA). The exam for the highest-grade level, known as AWT5™, launched on July 15th, completing the planned roll-out of...

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                                                                                      The Water Research Foundation (WRF) has funded 12 new Research Priority Program projects with a total funding amount of $2,125,000. This research allocation will be significantly leveraged with partnership funding and in-kind support. Requests for Proposals (RFPs) for these projects will be released in August 2020. The Research Priority Program is WRF’s largest strategic research program, addressing...

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                                                                                        The East County Advanced Water Purification (AWP) Joint Powers Authority (JPA) Board of Directors unanimously approved water and wastewater service agreements this week, moving this significant drinking water project one-step closer to reality. These water and wastewater agreements are critical to the JPA’s eligibility for key Program financing opportunities. Water purchase agreements were approved between...

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                                                                                          Coverage of biosolids and co-digestion supported by Anaergia Construction Underway at California’s Sterling Natural Resource Center, Incorporating Fibracast’s Advanced Membranes and Anaergia’s Anaerobic Digestion System Anaergia Inc. and its sister company Fibracast Ltd. are pleased to announce that they have been added to the team selected for the construction of the Sterling Natural Resource Center (SNRC)...

                                                                                        • NEWS

                                                                                              West County Wastewater and EBMUD (East Bay Municipal Utility District) announced a recycled water partnership that will preserve valuable drinking water for the region and support West County Wastewater’s ongoing mission of environmental stewardship and protecting public health. Under an existing agreement, West County Wastewater sends the majority of its treated secondary wastewater to...

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                                                                                              CWEA’s fourth free COVID-19 in CA webinar From April 30, 2020 The experts tell us the coronavirus is here to stay. How do water reuse and wastewater professionals fine tune their treatment processes to better deactivate/remove virus to protect themselves and their community? Is there even infectious virus in wastewater? Three experts in wastewater disinfection...

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                                                                                                Today, at an event at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) headquarters in Washington, D.C., EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, and U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary David Bernhard joined federal, state, tribal, local and water sector partners to announce the National Water Reuse Action Plan: Collaborative Implementation (Version 1). The actions that EPA and its...

                                                                                              • NEWS

                                                                                                  Systems approaching viability in field tests of Duke-led Gates Foundation “Reinvent the Toilet” project By Ken Kingery DUKE Pratt School of Engineering As legend has it, when French workers felt their livelihoods threatened by automation in the early 1900s, they flung their wooden shoes called sabots into the machines to stop them. Hence the word...

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                                                                                                    From Water Reuse California… WateReuse California and the National Water Research Institute released a guidance document for developing a standard operating procedure for bioanalytical testing for potable reuse. View Guidance Document NWRI facilitates the Bioanalytical Implementation Advisory Group (BIAG), which is working with staff from the California State Water Resources Control Board to develop standard operating procedures for...

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                                                                                                      From WateReuse… Reclamation Awards $1.6 Million for Water Reuse Research The Bureau of Reclamation announced that it has awarded $1.6 million to four WateReuse Association members to fund Title XVI water reclamation and reuse research studies. When non-federal cost-share contributions are included, these studies will accomplish more than $7.6 million in water reuse research. The...

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                                                                                                        Story by Brave Blue World Production Team Liam Neeson narrated Brave Blue World shown to international water community Uplifting stories of innovation and problem-solving inspires audience Grassroots screenings scheduled before European premiere Global water leaders, innovators and activists gathered for the world premiere of Brave Blue World on December 16th in Hollywood. The powerful documentary...

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                                                                                                          From USC news service A team led by USC Viterbi’s Adam Smith has found that purified water returned to Southern California aquifers often becomes contaminated with antibiotic-resistant bacteria, a realization that could have major implications on the global water supply. By Avni Shah Wastewater recycling offers a variety of environmental benefits but also a big...

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                                                                                                            Article by UC Riverside… Get over it? When it comes to recycled water, consumers won’t UC Riverside study shows that, while people can come to appreciate recycled water’s benefits, they still don’t want to use it By J.D. WARREN, Director, News & Information, UC Riverside  If people are educated on recycled water, they may come...

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                                                                                                              Now it’s official – No Drugs Down the Drain and We Mean All Drugs Effective August 21, 2019 the EPA has now banned healthcare facilities from flushing (“sewering”) any and all drugs including the hazardous waste drugs previously on on a flush list for healthcare providers. Finally! EPA’s website with details on the new no-flush...

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                                                                                                                In the mid-1920’s, with the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California just forming and the Colorado River water supply not yet secured, the LADWP recognized that its water supplies would be outstripped by the rapid growth and development of Los Angeles. In late 1929, because of the forecast water demands, LADWP officials decided to pursue...

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                                                                                                                  The Orange County Water District (OCWD; the District) Board of Directors voted to award the contract to construct the 30 million gallon per day (MGD) Final Expansion of the world-renowned Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS) to Shimmick Construction Company, Inc. The overall project cost is $310 million with the construction portion being approximately $200 million. The...

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                                                                                                                      This article was produced and published by the Water Education Foundation as part of its Western Water news. The Foundation can be found at www.watereducation.org. Our thanks to WEF for permission to republish their article. By Gary Pitzer Water Education Foundation WESTERN WATER NOTEBOOK: Lower flows damage equipment, concentrate waste and stink up neighborhoods;...

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                                                                                                                      Coverage of asset management topics is supported by MentorAPM AN INTERVIEW WITH WATER EXPERT PAUL BROWN California’s wastewater systems were designed decades ago with flow rates predicted to be much higher than what we’re seeing today. Corrosion, odor, grit, nutrients and less water for reuse are all consequences of declining sewer flows. So now what? To...

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                                                                                                                        Public outreach programs can reap multiple benefits for utilities and other public agencies, including community support for projects and utility rate increases; third-party credibility with community and policymakers; increased awareness among community members about project issues; lasting relationships with community leaders; and, in many cases, better decisions. An effective public outreach program takes effort and...

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                                                                                                                          State Water Board press release… Key Details Policy for Water Quality Control for Recycled Water was first drafted in 2009 and amended in 2013 Recycled water is water that is deemed suitable for a beneficial use after treatment An expert advisory panel made recommendations for monitoring constituents of emerging concern that were incorporated into the Policy One...

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                                                                                                                            From the State Water Board website… Water Recycling Funding Program Pilot Project Grant Requirements The Water Recycling Funding Program provides grants to assist public agencies with the construction of pilot projects for new potable reuse.  The applicant must demonstrate that the pilot project will develop new information that does not currently exist and increase the...

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                                                                                                                              Moulton Niguel Water District is celebrating its 50th year of operating one of the state’s most successful water recycling programs, which reuses more than 2 billion gallons of water every year. As one of the first agencies to use recycled water in Orange County in the early 1960s, Moulton Niguel Water District now provides recycled water...

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                                                                                                                                 The California Water Commission (Commission) recently announced that Regional San will receive $280.5 million—the maximum requested funding amount—in Proposition 1 grant funding to help make the South County Ag Program a reality for the Sacramento region. The South County Ag Program will deliver highly treated recycled water for agricultural irrigation in the southern portion...

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                                                                                                                                  Cool new video from LA Sanitation featuring: City of Los Angeles 2025 local water goal – One Water Los Angeles Donald C Tillman Water Reclamation Plant Advanced Water Purification demonstration project Ozone treatment option that was chosen LA Groundwater Replenishment project Featuring interviews with LABS Past President Bryan Trussell and member Wendy Broley.

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                                                                                                                                    The purpose of this standard is to define the critical requirements for the effective operation and management of a DPR water program. ISBN: 9781613004739 Publisher: AWWA Publication date: 2018 AWWA catalog no: STG_0086771 Media Type: PDF Number of pages: 14 DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.12999/AWWA.G485.18 Agency reviewers include: J.D. Brown, Contra Costa Water District, Concord, Calif. S. Deshmukh, West Basin Municipal Water District, Carson, Calif....

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                                                                                                                                      The California-Nevada Section of the American Water Works Association (CA-NV AWWA) and California Water Environment Association (CWEA) have signed a memorandum of agreement to jointly develop the Advanced Water Treatment Operator (AWTO) Certification program. The certification exams are expected to be ready in the Spring of 2019. The certification will be open to all California...

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                                                                                                                                        The landmark Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS) began operation in January, 2008. Located in Fountain Valley the facility is operated by the Orange County Water District (OCWD) using secondary effluent produced by the  Orange County Sanitation District (OCSD). State-of-the-art technologies including microfiltration, reverse osmosis and ultraviolet disinfection are used to produce up to 70 million gallons...

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                                                                                                                                          About this series:  Each month CWEA is interviewing an innovative thinker in the water profession. We’re asking each person “The future of the water profession is …” Juan Guerreiro Deputy Director City of San Diego, Public Utilities Department Grade V Wastewater Treatment Operator, SWRCB Dual-Associate Degrees, Water and Wastewater, Cuyamaca College Bachelors Degree, San Diego State University...

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                                                                                                                                            About this series:  Each month CWEA is interviewing an innovative thinker in the water profession. We’re asking each person “The future of the water profession is …” Prior to becoming a water professional, Richard Salas worked for McDonald Douglas as a structural mechanic. “Working at McDonald Douglas gave me an appreciation of attention to detail,” Richard...

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                                                                                                                                              Flush with Possibilities With a new water purification plant, Santa Clara Valley Water District is driving water reuse to advance reliable, sustainable water supplies.  On a sunny afternoon last spring, four Silicon Valley leaders took large swigs of recycled water to show that it’s clean enough…well…to drink. And how does that filtered, decontaminated, and disinfected...

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                                                                                                                                                Can 1+1=3, or maybe even more?  That is the question Stanford and Silicon Valley Clean Water (SVCW) hope to answer with two pilot plants using an innovative anaerobic secondary treatment process. The ‘SAF-MBR’ project, which stands for Staged Anaerobic Fluidized-bed Membrane Bioreactor, has two main components – the membrane system and the fluidized-bed. Both are...

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                                                                                                                                                  This post originally appeared on UC Berkeley’s Legal Planet blog. Of Dreamliners and Drinking Water By Michael Kiparsky and Christian Binz As we have written previously, potable water reuse (recycling water to augment water supplies) is a promising way to diversify urban water supply portfolios. Direct potable water reuse (DPR), the injection of highly purified...

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                                                                                                                                                    During the Legislature’s 2017 session several new California laws were passed that will impact water systems. The Governor has now signed each into law. AB 967  Biocreamation Facilities Bill – this law becomes effective January 1, 2018. Wastewater districts will have the legal authority to accept or reject liquid cremation of human remains from licensed...

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                                                                                                                                                      Below is the joint comment letter CWEA and CA NV AWWA have submitted focused on the operator certification piece of the DPR Report to the Legislature on the Feasibility of Developing Uniform Water Recycling Criteria for Direct Potable Reuse. Dear State Water Resources Control Board: Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the State Water...

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                                                                                                                                                          The path to on-site non-potable water reuse has been beset by roadblocks, but a new initiative is removing them to clear the way for more efficient water management. Whether challenged by multiyear drought, extreme flooding, impacts due to a changing climate, or increased demand on water supplies due to population growth, water utilities across...

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                                                                                                                                                          WE&RF released a new research report on pretreatment standards for agencies interested in adding or expanding their water reuse facilities. The report features three California agencies: City of Los Angeles; City of San Diego and the Orange County Sanitation District. The project was funded by SoCal based Metropolitan Water District. The research project consisted of...