US Water Alliance & San Francisco Public Utilities Commission announce commitment at White House Water Summit

In honor of World Water Day, the US Water Alliance and City of San Francisco partner to advance onsite water reuse projects across the country.

Washington, D.C., March 22, 2016 -- Today, in honor of World Water Day, the US Water Alliance and the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) jointly announced a commitment to accelerate the development of onsite water reuse projects across the country. Leaders from both organizations participated in the White House Water Summit, where more than 150 water commitments were announced- representing tremendous partnerships and investments focused on addressing America's most pressing water challenges.

"We are honored that the White House is featuring our commitment to help create a more sustainable water future in the United States," said San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee. "San Francisco is a city well-known as an incubator of innovative policies and technology. On World Water Day, we are proud to partner with the US Water Alliance to take San Francisco's work developing our onsite water reuse program as a model for other communities to implement their own water sustainability strategies."

"Water scarcity is the new normal for many regions in America and we're experiencing that reality first-hand in our drought-stricken state of California," said Harlan Kelly, General Manager of the SFPUC. "Diversifying our water supplies and efficiently using every last drop of water will help us prepare for the growing effects of climate change and diminished water availability. We have implemented onsite water reuse projects in our own headquarters and have 30 commercial buildings online or in the pipeline around San Francisco. We're proving that a strong public-private partnership is a critical component of a comprehensive water management program. We're excited to work with the US Water Alliance on strengthening our nation's water reliability."

Radhika Fox, CEO of the US Water Alliance, said: "With water supplies increasingly strained, communities are looking for new ways to develop and manage local water resources. One of the most exciting paradigm shifts in sustainable water management is the integration of smaller, decentralized onsite systems that treat and reuse water within buildings. The US Water Alliance is proud to be partnering with SFPUC; they are visionary local leaders. Through our partnership we hope to share their game-changing approach nationwide."

Over the course of two years, the National Blue Ribbon Commission to Accelerate the Adoption of Onsite Water Reuse will develop and advance policy and regulatory recommendations that support implementation of onsite water reuse projects. While communities have begun to deploy onsite water programs to treat and reuse water for irrigation, toilet flushing, and cooling, scaling of these systems has been stymied due to a number of institutional and regulatory barriers. The Blue Ribbon Commission will provide actionable recommendations for consideration by the US Environmental Protection Agency, and also foster state-level peer exchange and learning among water utilities and state public health agencies who are working to establish standards and practices for onsite water reuse.

The US Water Alliance will convene and staff the Blue Ribbon Commission, which will be co-chaired by the SFPUC and a leading public health agency. Members of the Blue Ribbon Commission, which will be composed of representatives from water utilities and public health agencies, will be announced at the US Water Alliance's One Water Summit 2016, to be held June 8-10th in Atlanta, GA.

The US Water Alliance is dedicated to promoting policies and programs to advance a sustainable water future for all. Established in 2008, the Alliance is a nationally recognized nonprofit organization that educates the nation on the true value of water, accelerates the adoption of one water policies and programs, and celebrates innovation in water management. The Alliance brings together diverse interests to identify and advance common-ground, achievable solutions for our nation's most pressing water challenges. Our membership includes water providers, public officials, business leaders, environmental organizations, community leaders, policy organizations, and more. To learn more, visit: uswateralliance.org

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission provides retail drinking water, clean energy, and wastewater services to San Francisco, and wholesale water to three Bay Area counties. Our mission is to provide our customers with high quality, efficient and reliable water, power, and sewer services in a manner that is inclusive of environmental and community interests, and that sustains the resources entrusted to our care. To learn more, visit: http://sfwater.org

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