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WateReuse Association Applauds Commitment to Water Reuse in INVEST Act

Date: July 01, 2021

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed bipartisan infrastructure legislation that would invest in water reuse and related federal programs and policies to begin to give communities and businesses the tools and resources they need to rebound from the pandemic and build resilience to drought, flooding, and other impacts of climate change. The INVEST in America Act (H.R. 3684), which includes the text of the Water Quality Protection and Job Creation Act of 2021 (H.R. 1915), passed 221-201. The WateReuse Association urges Congress to support the water reuse provisions in the Invest Act

The legislation contains the WateReuse Association’s top policy priorities. First, it reauthorizes the Alternative Water Source Grants Pilot Program, which authorizes the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to grant up to $200 million per year to state, interstate, and intrastate water resource development agencies to engineer, design, construct, and test water reuse projects throughout the country. The legislation also directs the EPA to establish a federal interagency working group on water reuse, which will break down silos, leverage resources throughout the federal family, and facilitate stakeholder engagement.

“The WateReuse Association thanks Representatives DeFazio, Napolitano, and Fitzpatrick for spearheading strong, bipartisan legislation to improve our nation’s water recycling infrastructure,” said Patricia Sinicropi, Executive Director of the WateReuse Association. “The INVEST Act is a bold step forward in improving that nation’s infrastructure so that we can build back better. We urge Congress to support the bill’s water recycling provisions as negotiations over infrastructure legislation continue.”

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 with healthy environments, robust economies and a high quality of life. Examples of the linkage between water reuse and economic resilience exist in each region of the country, including:

  • By 2035, the City of Los Angeles expects to recycle 100% of its water supplies and reduce its reliance on costly imported water from the Colorado River. 
  • Truckee Meadows Water Authority in Reno is planning 13-mile pipeline to provide 1.3 billion gallons of recycled water annually to the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center, home to Tesla, Switch and Google, and ensure 20,000 jobs remain in Nevada.   
  • The Hampton Roads region of Virginia, home to the largest concentration of military and naval installations, plans to recycle 100% of its effluent through an aquifer recovery system to prevent rising sea levels from threatening inundating the entire region.

WateReuse looks forward to working with the House and Senate in the coming weeks to finalize water infrastructure legislation that invests in critical water recycling infrastructure across the United States.

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