FIGURE 9-5 Percentage of annual operating costs recovered from reclaimed water rates.
SOURCE: AWWA (2008).
can also reduce water flows to downstream users and ecosystems.
Current reclaimed water rates do not typically return the full cost of treating and delivering reclaimed water to customers. Nonpotable water reuse customers are often required to pay for the connection to the reclaimed water lines; therefore, some cost incentive is needed to attract customers for a product that is perceived to be of lower quality based on its origin. Frequently, other revenue streams, including fees, drinking water programs, and subsidies, are used to offset the low rates. As the need for new water supplies in water-limited regions becomes the driving motivation for water reuse, reclaimed water rates are likely to climb so that reclaimed water resources are used as efficiently as the potable water supplies they are designed to augment.