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United States
Environmental Protection
Agency
Water Health
and Economic
Analysis Tool
Version 3.1
CONSEQUENCE ANALYSIS TOOL
FOR WATER UTILITIES
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PURPOSE
The Water Health and Economic Analysis Tool (WHEAT) is designed to assist utility owners and operators
in quantifying an adverse event's public health consequences (i.e., injuries and fatalities), utility-level financial
consequences, direct and indirect regional economic consequences and downstream impacts. The United States
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in collaboration with drinking water and wastewater (water sector)
partners, developed WHEAT to support consequence analyses for three scenarios: 1) loss of one or more assets,
2) release of a stored hazardous gas and 3) intentional contamination of a drinking water distribution system.
The WHEAT methodology uses a step-by-step process that assists users in conducting a consequence analysis
through development of "what-if" scenarios. Users can easily enter information about their utility: build and
run a consequence analysis scenario; and generate a report that summarizes the results.
WHEAT CONSEQUENCE ANALYSIS PROCESS
USER INPUT STEPS
ANALYSIS STEPS
Baseline
Inputs
Public Health
Consequences
Utility-level &
Regional Economic
Conquences
Scenario Inputs & Service	Distribution	Downstream Impacts
Loss and Response	System Impacts	(Wastewater Only)
WHEAT
Summary
Report

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FEATURES
Step-wise guidance to build scenarios and estimate utility-level consequences
Help materials at each step of the analysis to guide users through the process
Three scenarios of potential consequences:
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Release of a hazardous gas
Loss of operating assets
Water contamination
Detailed report that summarizes the baseline, scenario and consequence analysis results
The utility-level financial consequences reported by
WHEAT correlate the extent and duration of loss in
drinking water or wastewater service with the extent of
damage to operating asset(s). The tool estimates the
following as they result from the incident: lost sales
revenues, increased utility operating costs (e.g., labor,
equipment, materials, replacement water, environmental
damage and remediation) and asset repair and replacement
costs. Regional economic impacts are also estimated
to account for losses incurred by businesses directly
affected by, for example, a loss of service (i.e., direct
impacts) and losses among other businesses that are
linked economically to the directly affected businesses
(i.e., total impacts).
APPLICATION OF WHEAT ANALYSIS RESULTS
Determining an adverse event's potential consequences
is an important step in conducting a comprehensive risk
assessment. The results of a WHEAT analysis can inform
risk assessment tools such as EPA's Vulnerability Self
Assessment Tool (VSAT). WHEAT users can readily import
their results directly into a VSAT risk assessment to help
determine the potential consequences (i.e., public health and
financial impacts) of a specific threat's impact on a utility's
assets. WHEAT output data can be used to make informed
decisions regarding asset management as part of a risk
assessment, including actions to take or countermeasures
to put in place to improve emergency preparedness,
enhance resilience and justify expenditures for future
infrastructure improvement. Using WHEAT greatly simplifies
risk assessment, giving users quantitative information for
better managing their utility's risk in case of adverse events.
WHEAT CONSEQUENCE ANALYSIS AS A PART OF WATER SECTOR RISK ASSESSMENT METHODS
WHEAT: CONSEQUENCE ANALYSIS
R SK ASSESSMENT METHODOLOG ES
Asset Characterization
Threat Characterization
Consequence Analysis
Vulnerability Analysis
Threat Assessment
Risk Assessment
Risk Management
Asset-Threat Combinations
(Hazardous Gas Release, Loss of
Assets, or Contamination)
Financial
Costs/Regional
Economic
Impact ($)
Consequence
Economic
Bins
Public Health
Impact
(Numbers)
Consequence
Public Health
Bins
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FOR MORE INFORMATION
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Download WHEAT Version 3.1 at http:^www.epa.gov/wheat.
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For more information or questions, email WHEAThelp@epa.gov.
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Office of Water (4608-T) | EPA 817-F-18-001 | July 2018

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