IMPROVING THE NATION’S WATER SECURITY
OPPORTUNITIES FOR RESEARCH
THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS
THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS
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NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the panel responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance.
Support for this study was provided by the Environmental Protection Agency under Contract Number 68-C-03-081. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the organizations or agencies that provided support for the project.
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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES
Advisers to the Nation on Science, Engineering, and Medicine
The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences.
The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Charles M. Vest is president of the National Academy of Engineering.
The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine.
The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy’s purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone and Dr. Charles M. Vest are chair and vice chair, respectively, of the National Research Council.
COMMITTEE ON WATER SYSTEM SECURITY RESEARCH*
DAVID M. OZONOFF, Chair,
Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
FRANCIS A. DIGIANO,
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
CHARLES N. HAAS,
Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
ANNA K. HARDING,
Oregon State University, Corvallis
DENNIS D. JURANEK,
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, retired, Atlanta, Georgia
NANCY K. KIM,
New York State Department of Health, Albany
BRUCE M. LARSON,
American Water, Vorhees, New Jersey
DANIEL V. LIM,
University of South Florida, Tampa
RUDOLPH V. MATALUCCI,
Rudolph Matalucci Consultants, Inc., Albuquerque, New Mexico
DAVID A. RECKHOW,
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
H. GERARD SCHWARTZ, JR.,
Sverdup Civil, Inc., retired, St. Louis, Missouri
JOHN P. SULLIVAN,
Boston Water and Sewer Commission, Massachusetts
University of California, Davis, Emeritus
STEPHANIE E. JOHNSON, Study Director (From March 2005)
LAURA J. EHLERS, Study Director (Until March 2005)
DOROTHY K. WEIR, Research Associate
The events of September 11, 2001, changed perceptions and rearranged priorities in many ways. In the wake of the 2001 attacks, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as the lead agency in securing the nation’s water infrastructure, developed and began to implement a research and technical support program in drinking water and wastewater security. In 2003, in response to the EPA’s request, the National Research Council’s (NRC’s) Water Science and Technology Board convened the Panel on Water System Security Research to review the agency’s draft Water Security Research and Technical Support Action Plan (Action Plan). Two reports were issued (see NRC, 2004) to help the EPA identify important issues and needs and to make recommendations for improvement.
Much has now been accomplished in the way of filling the most obvious short-term information gaps, but water security research will need to be a continuous effort because water security needs and emphases will necessarily change as conditions, knowledge, technologies, and the industry change. As a consequence, the EPA’s National Homeland Security Research Center (NHSRC) has been made permanent, and in 2004, the EPA sought additional assistance from the NRC in evaluating progress to date and framing a mid- to long-range water security research strategy. The NRC organized the Committee on Water System Security Research for this purpose, and we present its final report here.1
The committee met five times over the span of two years. The first two meetings were held in Cincinnati, Ohio, at the headquarters of the NHSRC. At these meetings, the committee members were able to obtain information from relevant EPA water security research personnel and review classified material as necessary. We received outstanding coop-
The committee also issued an interim letter report in November 2005 that is included in Appendix A.
eration from EPA personnel, and we would particularly like to thank Kim Fox, Jon Herrmann, and Scott Minamyer for their help in addressing the committee’s information needs.
The committee’s charge was broad and relatively nonspecific, which allowed considerable latitude, even though this latitude created its own organizational challenges. The task of reviewing a continually evolving research program also presented difficulties for the committee. Throughout, however, the committee was mindful of its chief objective: to help the EPA in the difficult task of fashioning a reasonable, practical, and useful agenda for research and technical support in water and wastewater security. We began with a good appreciation for the difficulty of the task and that appreciation only grew as we learned more about the research program and its inherent challenges.
The committee consisted of 13 members with scientific, technical, public policy, utilities management, and social science expertise. The committee was not only hardworking but also remarkably collegial and congenial, making a hard job easier as a result. As chair, I would like to thank committee members personally for making the job as pleasurable as it could be and producing a solid, thoughtfully developed report. No NRC report is possible, however, without expert staff, for whom words like “extraordinary” are commonplace. Commonplace or not, this committee was blessed by truly extraordinary staff. Our study director, Dr. Stephanie Johnson, kept us focused, guided our discussions, and used her considerable experience and knowledge to avoid problems and move us in the most fruitful directions. Our project assistant, Dorothy Weir, made sure logistics, research assistance, and editorial tasks were done transparently, and her keen mind helped substantively as well.
This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the NRC’s Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the NRC in making its published report as sound as possible and will ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this report: Frank Blaha, American Water Works Association Research Foundation; Frank Bove, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry; William Cooper, University of California, Irvine; William Desing, CH2M Hill; Eve Hinman, Hinman Consulting Engineers, Inc.; Kerry Kirk Pflugh, New Jersey Department
of Environmental Protection; David Spath, California Department of Health Services; Mic Stewart, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California; and Walter Weber, University of Michigan.
Although the reviewers listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the conclusions or recommendations, nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release. The review of this report was overseen by Marylynn Yates of the University of California, Riverside. Appointed by the NRC, she was responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were considered carefully. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution.
David M. Ozonoff, Chair