A Proposed Framework for Regulating Direct Potable Reuse in California

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About the Framework

The State Water Board staff has prepared the Framework to satisfy the recommendation in Assembly Bill (AB) 574 (Chapter 528, Statutes of 2017) to establish a framework for the regulation of potable reuse projects. In preparing the Framework, the State Water Board included the following elements stated in the California Water Code section 13560.5:
  1. The consideration of recommendations provided in the State Water Board’s “Investigation on the Feasibility of Developing Uniform Water Recycling Criteria for Direct Potable Reuse.”
  2. A schedule for completing the recommended research described in “Investigation on the Feasibility of Developing Uniform Water Recycling Criteria for Direct Potable Reuse.”
  3. A regulatory framework for potable reuse projects that will be protective of public health.
  4. A process and timeline for updating uniform water recycling criteria for potable reuse through reservoir water augmentation.

The Framework is intended to primarily document and communicate the State Water Board Division of Drinking Water’s (DDW) current thinking on regulating direct potable reuse in California. The feedback received from the public will help inform the State Water Board in laying the groundwork for the development of the uniform water recycling criteria for direct potable reuse. The Framework is not a regulatory document. A rulemaking process pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act will be a separate effort undertaken by the State Water Board for the uniform water recycling criteria for direct potable reuse through raw water augmentation.

Framework Second Edition – August 2019

The State Water Board staff has completed a revision to the Framework (Framework Second Edition) to reflect the Board’s current thinking on regulating direct potable reuse. The Framework Second Edition includes a discussion of the regulatory approach for direct potable reuse, as well as an update on the consideration of drinking water treatment plants. The Framework Second Edition is presented in a format that highlights the revisions that were made. Content that have been added are indicated by underlining the new text, and content that have been deleted are indicated by a strikethrough, which is a line drawn through the text.

Download the Framework Second Edition (PDF)

Public Comments

State Water Board staff is seeking feedback from the public and interested parties on the revisions to the Framework (Framework Second Edition).

Written public comments will be requested in two rounds. The initial 30-day public comment period is set up so DDW staff can receive early feedback on the Framework concepts, primarily related to regulation of direct potable reuse projects. The public is welcome to submit comments regarding the Framework after the close of public comment period. DDW staff will review all comments received, but may not be able to provide an individualized detailed response.

Public Comment Period
3 September 2019 – 9 October 2019
Download the Notice of Public Comment Period (PDF)

The comments on the Framework may be sent to the State Water Board DDW, Recycled Water Unit as follows:

  • By e-mail: DDWrecycledwater@waterboards.ca.gov (PDF format preferred, 15 megabytes or less in size).
  • By mail, addressed to:
    Sherly Rosilela, P.E.
    Division of Drinking Water, Recycled Water Unit
    State Water Resources Control Board
    P.O. Box 100
    Sacramento, CA 95812-100

Framework – April 2018

The State Water Board staff completed the Framework in April 2018. Completion of the Framework satisfied the recommendation of AB 574 to establish a framework for the regulation of potable reuse projects on or before June 1, 2018.

The Framework and Fact Sheet can be downloaded from web links below.

Download the Framework (PDF)

Download the Fact Sheet (PDF)

State Water Board DDW staff held workshops in northern California and southern California to present the Framework in April 2018.

Download the Workshop Notice (PDF)

Download the Workshop Presentation (PDF)

The State Water Board released the Framework for a 30-day public comment period in April 2018.

Public Comment Period
19 April 2018 - 20 May 2018

DDW staff received a total of 10 comment letters by the end of calendar day on May 20, 2018.

Commenters Submitted by
Russian River Watershed Protection Committee Brenda Adelman
Irvine Ranch Water District Paul Cook
City of San Diego John Helminski
General Public Dr. Edo McGowan
San Diego County Water Authority Toby Roy
Metropolitan Water District Mic Stewart
Water Plus Ron Weitzman
WateReuse California
California Association of Sanitation Agencies
California Coastkeeper Alliance
Jennifer West
Roberta Larson
Sean Bothwell
Separation Processes, Inc. James Vickers
California Municipal Utilities Association Jonathan Young

State Water Board DDW staff presented the Framework as an informational item at the State Water Board hearing on June 5, 2018. The informational item presentation can be downloaded from web link below.

Download the Informational Item Presentation (PDF)

Contact Information

Randy Barnard, P.E.
Senior Sanitary Engineer
(619) 525-4022
E-mail questions to DDWrecycledwater@waterboards.ca.gov

Return to Division of Drinking Water’s Recycled Water Information page

  (Page last updated 9/6/19)

 
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