Addressing Water Reuse with the
Drinking Water State Revolving Fund
Communities can use the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) for water reuse projects that
will augment their source water capacity or reduce their potable water demand.
Water reuse is a practice that reclaims water from a
variety of wastewater and stormwater sources then
treats and uses it for other beneficial purposes. Also
known as water recycling or water reclamation, it can
provide alternatives to existing water supplies and be
used to enhance water security, sustainability, and
Water reuse can be defined as planned or unplanned.
Unplanned or "de facto" water reuse occurs when a
source of water is composed of previously used water.
For example, some communities draw their water
supplies from rivers that receive treated wastewater
discharges from other communities upstream.
Planned water reuse refers to water systems designed
with the goal of beneficially using a recycled water
supply. Often communities seek to optimize their
overall water use by reusing water to the extent
possible within the community, before the water is
reintroduced to the environment. Example applications
of planned reuse include irrigation, industrial water,
potable water supplies, and groundwater supply
EPA does not require or regulate any type of water
reuse. Instead, states maintain primary authority in
developing regulations and other policies governing
water reuse. Some states have established programs to
specifically address reuse, while others are in the
process of establishing water reuse programs or they
address such issues on a case-by-case basis. EPA,
states, tribes, and local governments implement
programs under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA)
and the Clean Water Act (ONA) to protect the quality of
drinking water source waters, community drinking
water, and waterbodies like rivers and lakes. Together,
the SDWA and the CWA provide a foundation from
which states can enable, regulate, and oversee water
reuse as they deem appropriate. To establish a
framework and maximize the potential of water reuse,
in February 2020 EPA released the National Water
Reuse Action Plan to better integrate federal policy and
leverage the expertise of both industry and government
to ensure the effective use of the Nation's water
Additional EPA Water Reuse Resources:
https: //www. epa. go v/waterreuse

EPA OGWDW | Addressing Water Reuse with the DWSRF
EPA 810-F-19-002 December 2020
The DWSRF can provide financial assistance to
publicly-owned and privately-owned community water
systems, as well as non-profit non-community water
systems, for drinking water infrastructure projects.
Projects must either facilitate the system's compliance
with national primary drinking water regulations or
significantly further the health protection objectives of
the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA).
Each of the 50 states and Puerto Rico operates its own
DWSRF program. They receive annual capitalization
grants from EPA, which in turn provide low-interest
loans and other types of assistance to water systems.
Repayments of DWSRF loans begin up to 18 months
after project completion, with loan terms up to 30 years
for most communities, or up to 40 years for
disadvantaged communities.
Additionally, states may use a portion of their
capitalization grant from the EPA as "set-asides" to help
communities build the technical, managerial, and
financial capacities of their systems. With an emphasis
on small systems, these funds help ensure sustainable
infrastructure and public health investments.
Treatment Projects
DWSRF financial assistance can be used for water reuse
related infrastructure projects. Treatment projects for
water reuse involve the implementation of technologies
to achieve a desired level of water quality, as shown in
Figure 1 (EPA's 2012 Guidelines for Water Reuse).
Examples of eligible projects include upgrades in
wastewater treatment to improve the quality of effluent
for a variety of potable and non-potable uses, or the
development of infiltration basins or spreading grounds
to facilitate soil aquifer treatment in groundwater

Transmission and Distribution Projects
The components of a non-potable reclaimed water
distribution system (aka "purple pipe") are DWSRF
eligible, since these projects typically mitigate the need
for additional water supply or replace existing potable
water demand. These systems are needed to convey
reclaimed water to end-users for a variety of uses such
as irrigation or manufacturing processes.
Storage Projects
An aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) system for water
storage is an eligible DWSRF project. These projects
could include wells, pumps, pipes, storage tanks, and
wellhead structures for ASR systems using recycled
Set-aside Activities for Water Reuse
DWSRF set-asides can be used for multiple water reuse
related purposes. For example, a study to evaluate new
regulations for Advanced Wastewater Treatment
Facilities operations in potable reuse schemes,
developing a certification program for operators of water
reuse facilities, or integrating a process control and
monitoring program for the transformation of municipal
wastewater to a high-quality drinking water supply. Also,
states and communities can use set-asides to develop
ordinances to promote and increase public awareness on
water reuse, or to do a feasibility study for aquifer
Water systems receive DWSRF assistance directly from
state agencies. Each state has its own application
procedure. Contact information for each state is posted
at https://www.epa.aov/drinkinawatersrf/state-dwsrf-

Figure 1. Fit for purpose water reuse
Level of treatment depends
on the reuse application
For more information, visit: epa.gov/dwsrf

DWSRF Case Studies: Water Reuse
How communities are using the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) for water reuse
projects to increase their source water capacity and secure their potable water for the future.
pump station at the Village Creek Wastewater
Treatment Plant and a 9-mile transmission main to
deliver recycled water to the Dallas-Fort Worth airport
and the City of Euless, as well as a 2-mile transmission
main to the City of Arlington. The reclaimed water is
being used at golf courses and sports complexes in
Euless and Arlington, and at the airport for irrigation
and in cooling towers.
The City of Helena, Montana, received two DWSRF
loans in 2012 and 2016 totaling approximately $2.5
million to upgrade their Missouri River and the Tenmile
Water Treatment Plants. Previously, the filter backwash
water was discharged to the ground by percolation in
large surface basins. The new projects included the
construction of filter backwash recycle ponds and a
distribution system for irrigation. With the
improvements the City now reuses the backwash water
for managed irrigation and recycles the backwash
water back into the treatment facilities. These
upgrades allowed them to become a "zero discharge
facility," not only saving permitting and operational
costs, but also conserving previously wasted water.
In Texas, the City of Fort Worth has experienced
significant population growth since the beginning of
this century. Increased demand for water caused the
City to evaluate water reuse, as highly treated
wastewater can be used for non-potable purposes
such as landscape irrigation. In 2007, the City
conducted a study to determine the best location to
implement a project and selected eastern Fort Worth
as the site for a reclaimed water system.
The City received $16.3 million in DWSRF funding in
2010 for this project. The project involved the
construction of a 14 million gallon per day (MGD)

EPA OGWDW | DWSRF Case Studies: Water Reuse
In 2014 the City of Prescott, Arizona, completed an
integral major expansion project at their Airport Water
Reclamation Facility to add capacity due to increasing
wastewater flows. The facility had a limit of 1.2 MGD
and was receiving influent flows of 1.1 MGD. The
project upgraded its capacity to 3.75 MGD and
included an aeration system, blower building, tertiary
filtration, disinfection, and effluent pump station and
qualified as a green project reserve within the water
efficiency category.
To complete the project, Prescott received a CWSRF
loan of $45.8 million. This new capacity allows the City
to meet current and near-term needs and results in an
increased ability to reliably treat the current
wastewater flows and produce Class A+ reclaimed
water. This effluent is utilized for recharging the
aquifer through one or more of the eight percolation
basins located on-site. Other uses include irrigation for
golf courses, washing aggregate materials, and dust
abatement on construction projects. Although this
project was funded by the CWSRF, similar projects
would be partially eligible for DWSRF assistance.
EPA 816-F-20-004 December 2020
In Oklahoma, the Lawton Water Authority conducted
an $800,000 feasibility study to evaluate the viability of
water reuse in 2016. The Authority contributed
$600,000 and the rest was funded with a CWSRF loan
that qualified for principal forgiveness.
The study was necessary because of the impact of
prolonged drought conditions over the previous years
in the southwest region of Oklahoma, which threatened
the Authority's water supply sustainability and resulted
in the implementation of water usage restrictions. In
order to provide a long-term solution for future water
supply shortages, the Authority evaluated three
different alternatives to address this issue: aquifer
storage recharge, direct potable reuse, and indirect
potable reuse. Although this project was funded by the
state and the CWSRF, similar projects would be eligible
for DWSRF assistance. This study could have been
funded either with DWSRF set-asides or with the loan
Additional EPA Water Reuse Resources:
https: //www.epa.gov/waterreuse
Water systems receive DWSRF assistance directly from
state agencies. Each state has its own application
procedure. Contact information for each state is posted
at https://www.epa.QOv/drinkinQwatersrf/state-dwsrf-
For more information, visit: epa.gov/dwsrf