AGENDA NO. ____ WEST BASIN MUNICIPAL WATER DISTRICT FEBRUARY 16, 2006 - Water Resources Little, Dear FEBRUARY 27, 2006 - Board Meeting Prepared by: Uzi Daniel Submitted by: Uzi Daniel Approved by: Rich Nagel
A number of recent articles have appeared in local newspapers regarding human medicationsthat land in water supplies from residuals in treated sewage. One profiled article published onJanuary 30, 2006, in the Los Angeles Times highlighted the Whittier Narrows facility and notedlevels of pharmaceuticals such as estrogen, Ibuprofen and antibiotics at detectible levels inparts per trillion (the equivalent of one second in 32,000 years). These constituents arethought to originate from Los Angeles County Sanitation's tertiary treated reclamation water. Recycled water that is treated by Microfiltration (MF) or Reverse Osmosis (RO), similar to theWest Basin's Water Recycling Plant, typically reduced these constituents to non-detect levels. The article quotes an expert toxicologist from Southern Nevada Water Authority, Dr. ShaneSnyder, who West Basin works with closely in R&D. Dr. Snyder notes that these results aremostly of concern where less treated sewage water is dumped directly into sensitive streams.
This subject is not new and West Basin has taken a look at both pharmaceuticals andendocrine disrupters in wastewater since it first hit the water quality radars over ten years ago. In 1994, the United States Geological Survey took a nationwide look for occurrence of manytypes of potential water quality concerns including pharmaceuticals. They were found at low-levels all over the United States, particularly where sewage water was not treated to anyadvanced level. The West Basin Expert Panel took this into consideration when theyevaluated West Basin's expanded Barrier plans for the Department of Health Services (DHS)and requested various constituents to be tested. The results of those tests are shown below. The panel recommended adding UV and Peroxide treatment as additional treatment barriersprior to injecting recycled water into the West Coast Basin Barrier. Influent RO Effluent Detection
WBMWD Board MemorandumFebruary 27, 2006 Page 2
West Basin has participated in a number of studies that looked for these chemicals, includingseveral with Dr. Snyder, a cooperative study with Orange County Water District, a largeAwwARF study completed in 1999, and more recently a study with Dr. Jorg Drewes of theColorado School of Mines, which found all measured compounds below detection limits:
Constituent Double Pass RO Constituent Double Pass RO
West Basin is committed to continue studying this subject area, currently two other studies areunderway, in cooperation with the Department of Water Resources and the CaliforniaEnvironmental Protection Agency to continue investigating the source and removal of thesecompounds. West Basin has also agreed to include a number of these compounds as part oftheir Source Control Implementation Program.
Cost elements of the permit have been accounted for in the R&D Budget for fiscal year 2005-06.
Some of these studies are required for permit condition compliance.
This item was reviewed by the Water Resources Committee on February 16, 2006 and wasagendized to the February 27, 2006 Board meeting as information for discussion.
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