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Onsite Non-potable Water Systems build upon years of research and collaboration by leading water utilities, public health officials, and national research foundations. The materials below include resources to support local implementation of onsite non-potable water reuse programs. Check back for updates and publications from the commission.

Onsite Water Recycling E-Book

This e-book, full of stories, projects, and lessons-learned from across the world is designed to inspire utilities and government leaders to consider onsite water treatment systems as an effective strategy in their long-term water resource and resilience planning.

National Blue Ribbon Commission Fact Sheet

A fact sheet discussing the role and activities of the national Blue Ribbon Commission (NBRC) for Onsite Non-potable water systems, relevant regulations across the United States, and more.

Program Guide: Financing Decentralized Wastewater Treatment Systems

The EPA’s 2022 guidebook is designed to help state staff better align and integrate their state’s Clean Water State Revolving Funds (CWSRF) and onsite/decentralized wastewater programs. The guide details how communities can use CWSRFs to finance decentralized system projects, options for loan repayment, and best practices for successful projects.

Health Risk-based Benchmarks for Onsite Treatment of Water

A 2023 report outlining the current state of the science for determining the level of treatment required for onsite non-potable water reuse systems, including four different approaches for achieving a health benchmark.

Onsite Water Reuse Lessons Learned

This 2024 report from the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission shares lessons in designing, operating, and implementing an onsite water reuse system. The easy-to-read tips are designed to inspire thoughtful choices and process improvements that can be implemented over the life of an onsite water system.

  • Waterloop Podcast, April 2024: San Francisco’s Onsite Revolution. Listen here.
  • NBRC releases updated factsheet. Learn more.
  • EPA releases new onsite web-based tool. Learn more.
  • NBRC Chair, Paula Kehoe, discusses onsite non-potable reuse priorities during EPA and WateReuse National Water Reuse Action Plan Resilience through Collaboration: First Year Highlights and Future Directions of the National Water Reuse Action Plan webcast. Watch here.

Technical Resources

Onsite Water Reuse Summit: Integration of Science, Policy, and Operation for Safe and Effective Implementation

April 10-11, 2024

The National Blue Ribbon Commission for Onsite Non-potable Water Systems (NBRC) partnered with WateReuse and the U.S. EPA to host a two-day Onsite Water Reuse Summit in Washington DC.

The Summit explored the integration of science, policy, and operation for the safe and effective implementation of onsite water reuse systems. The agenda is linked below, as are the presentation slides.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Legislation

  • California: In September 2018, California signed into law Senate Bill 966, which directs the State Water Resources Control Board to establish risk-based water quality standards for onsite non-potable water systems. The SFPUC collaborated with Senator Scott Wiener to develop the legislation. The work that’s been accomplished to date by the National Blue Ribbon Commission will support the state’s development of the risk-based water quality standards.
  • Colorado: In August 2018, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment updated Regulation #84, which regulates reclaimed water use, to allow localized nonpotable water systems to treat onsite wastewater for toilet flushing and irrigation. Colorado adopted a risk-based water quality approach for localized water reuse systems.
  • Hawaii: Hawaii passed legislation House Bill 444 in 2019 directing the Hawaii Department of Health to adopt a localized set of rules for onsite non-potable water systems with guidance from the National Blue Ribbon Commission.
  • Minnesota: Minnesota Department of Public Health has moved forward with guidance for onsite non-potable water systems. A report was published in March 2018 Advancing Safe and Sustainable Water Reuse in Minnesota. Recommendations from Minnesota’s report include adopting the risk-based water quality approach.
  • Washington: In 2021, House Bill 1184 was passed and signed into law. The legislation directs the Washington Department of Health to develop state-wide risk-based water quality standards for the use of onsite non-potable water reuse systems in commercial and multi-family buildings

Local, State, and Federal Programs

Publications and Presentations

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