United States
              Environmental Protection
  Water Sector-Specific  Plan  Fact Sheet
Drinking water and wastewater utility owners, operators, and staff need to be
consistently prepared for emergencies. Clean, safe, and reliable water is often taken
for granted; however, this service is essential in maintaining public health and the
economic viability of the community served.

The information below provides more details on how drinking water and wastewater
(Water Sector) partners are working together to enhance the security posture of critical
Water Sector infrastructure.
What is the Water Sector-Specific Plan?
The Water Sector-Specific Plan (Water SSP) is a
broad-based critical infrastructure protection
implementation strategy for drinking water and
wastewater utilities, their regulatory primacy
agencies, and the array of training and technical
assistance partners that comprise the Water Sector.
The plan describes processes and activities to assist
drinking water and wastewater utilities as they strive
to be better prepared to prevent, detect, respond to,
and recover from terrorist attacks, other intentional
acts, natural disasters, and other hazards.
Why Should I Be Concerned About Drinking
Water and Wastewater Security?
Protecting the critical infrastructure and key
resources (CI/KR) of the United States is essential
to the Nation's security, public health and safety,
economic vitality, and way of life.  We all rely on
clean and safe water; therefore, it is critical that we
protect the Nation's drinking water and wastewater
infrastructure. Whether your area of expertise is
emergency management, medical support and
health care, agriculture, or economics, water supply
is critical to the success of your program. Without a

reliable drinking water source and the means to safely
dispose of wastes, hospitals will not be able to support
a community in need, first responders will not be able
to fight fires, hazardous materials workers cannot take
decontamination measures, and response workers
will not be able to stay onsite due to a lack of potable
water.  Ultimately, the economic stability of a city,
town, or region may be jeopardized without water
that is safe to use and drink.

How was the Water Sector-Specific  Plan
The Water SSP was created under the guidance of the
U.S. Department of Homeland Security's National
Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP). The document,
which was produced by the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA) in coordination with Water
Sector security partners including the Water Sector
Coordinating Council and the Water Government
Coordinating Council, was released in June of 2007.

What does the Water Sector-Specific Plan Do?
The Water SSP contains four goals and supporting
objectives that will drive development of protective
programs and measures of success. These goals are:
 sustain protection of public health and the
 recognize and reduce risks;
 maintain a resilient infrastructure; and
 increase communication, outreach, and  public
The Water SSP includes information on identifying
assets, assessing risk, prioritizing infrastructure,
developing and implementing protective programs,
measuring progress, research and development, and
outlines EPA's responsibilities as the Sector-Specific
Agency. The Water SSP is based on the NIPP risk
management framework which establishes the
process for combining consequence, vulnerability,
and threat information to produce a comprehensive,
systematic, and rational assessment of national or
sector-specific risk that drives CI/KR protection

What Does This Mean for Me?
Protecting the Nation's Water Sector critical
infrastructure is a shared effort among water and
wastewater utilities, emergency management
agencies, national Water Sector associations, and
local, state, and federal government agencies.
Each partner has specific roles to play that include
assessing risk, providing resources for security
enhancements, providing training and technical
assistance, coordinating emergency response
activities, and implementing security infrastructure
enhancements.  Please consider how you can work
with these partners in mutually beneficial ways to
further support our Nation's security, public health
and safety, economic vitality, and way of life.
  Where Can I Get More Information?
  More information on the NIPP, the Water SSP, and other security-related materials can be found
  at the following Web sites:

  Water SSP and Security Initiatives:

  National Infrastructure Protection Plan:
  http ://w w w. dhs. gov/nipp
Office of Water
                                      December 2007