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AB-869 Sustainable water use and demand reduction: recycled water.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 07/03/2017 02:00 PM
AB869:v95#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  July 03, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  May 15, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 28, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 23, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 869


Introduced by Assembly Member Rubio

February 16, 2017


An act to amend Sections 10608.8 and 10608.12 of, and to add Section add Sections 1058.6, 10609.1, and 13551.5 to, to the Water Code, relating to water.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 869, as amended, Rubio. Sustainable water use and demand reduction: recycled water.
(1) Existing law imposes various water use reduction requirements that apply to urban retail water suppliers, including a requirement that the state achieve a 20% reduction in urban per capita water use by December 31, 2020.

This bill would require recycled water delivered within the service area of an urban retail water supplier or its urban wholesale water supplier for either nonpotable or potable use or that replenishes a groundwater basin and supplements the groundwater supply available to an urban retail water supplier be excluded from the calculation of any urban water use target or reduction in urban per capita water use. The bill would state that for these purposes recycled water use is an efficient use of water and would require recycled water use to be considered equivalent to other water use efficiency measures.

This bill would require the State Water Resources Control Board, in consultation with the Department of Water Resources, to adopt long-term standards for urban water conservation and water use by May 20, 2021. The bill would require the department, in coordination with the board, no later than October 1, 2020, to conduct necessary studies and investigations and recommend standards for indoor residential use and outdoor irrigation use for adoption by the board and would require the department to update these recommendations after 2026 in years ending in 2 and 7. The bill would require the board, in consultation with the department, to adopt performance measures for commercial, industrial, and institutional water use to produce measurable water use efficiency improvements, as specified, by May 20, 2021. The bill, after 2026 in years ending in 2 and 7, would require the board and the department to consider updating the long-term standards for urban water conservation and water use and the commercial, industrial, and institutional performance measures.
(2) Existing provisions of the California Constitution declare the policy that the water resources of the state be put to beneficial use to the fullest extent of which they are capable, that the waste or unreasonable use or unreasonable method of use of water be prevented, and that the conservation of these waters is to be exercised with a view to the reasonable and beneficial use of the waters in the interest of the people and for the public welfare. Existing law declares that the use of potable domestic water for certain nonpotable uses is a waste or an unreasonable use of water if recycled water is available, as determined by the State Water Resources Control Board, and other requirements are met.
This bill would prohibit an urban retail water supplier from being required by a regulation to reduce the amount of recycled water it produces, sells, or distributes for beneficial potable or nonpotable uses at any time. state the intent of the Legislature in enacting this measure to, among other things, encourage continued investment in water reuse as a means to increase water supply reliability and diversification within the state. The bill would state that water conservation does not include curtailment of use of recycled water.

(3)Existing law requires the Department of Water Resources to update every 5 years the plan for the orderly and coordinated control, protection, conservation, development, and use of the water resources of the state, which is known as The California Water Plan. Existing law requires the department, in consultation with the State Water Resources Control Board and with public input, no later than January 1, 2011, and updated as part of The California Water Plan, to propose new statewide targets, or review and update existing targets, for regional water resource management practices, including recycled water.

Existing law requires each agricultural water supplier to implement certain efficient water management practices if the measure is locally cost effective and technically feasible, including to facilitate the use of available recycled water that would otherwise not be used beneficially, that meets all health and safety criteria, and that does not harm crops or soils.

Existing law defines “recycled water,” for the above-described purposes and purposes under (1), as recycled water that is used to offset potable demand, including recycled water supplied for direct use and indirect potable reuse, that meets certain requirements.

This bill would redefine “recycled water” to also include recycled water supplied for nonpotable uses. The bill would define “potable reuse” for these purposes.

Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.Section 10608.8 of the Water Code is amended to read:
10608.8.

(a)(1)Water use efficiency measures adopted and implemented pursuant to this part or Part 2.8 (commencing with Section 10800) are water conservation measures subject to the protections provided under Section 1011.

(2)Because an urban agency is not required to meet its urban water use target until 2020 pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 10608.24, an urban retail water supplier’s failure to meet those targets shall not establish a violation of law for purposes of any state administrative or judicial proceeding prior to January 1, 2021. Nothing in this paragraph limits the use of data reported to the department or the board in litigation or an administrative proceeding. This paragraph shall become inoperative on January 1, 2021.

(3)To the extent feasible, the department and the board shall provide for the use of water conservation reports required under this part to meet the requirements of Section 1011 for water conservation reporting.

(b)This part does not limit or otherwise affect the application of Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340), Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 11370), Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 11400), and Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code.

(c)This part does not require a reduction in the total water used in the agricultural or urban sectors, because other factors, including, but not limited to, changes in agricultural economics or population growth may have greater effects on water use. This part does not limit the economic productivity of California’s agricultural, commercial, or industrial sectors.

(d)The requirements of this part do not apply to an agricultural water supplier that is a party to the Quantification Settlement Agreement, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 1 of Chapter 617 of the Statutes of 2002, during the period within which the Quantification Settlement Agreement remains in effect. After the expiration of the Quantification Settlement Agreement, to the extent conservation water projects implemented as part of the Quantification Settlement Agreement remain in effect, the conserved water created as part of those projects shall be credited against the obligations of the agricultural water supplier pursuant to this part.

(e)For this part, recycled water use is an efficient use of water and shall be considered equivalent to other water use efficiency measures.

(f)This part shall exclude recycled water delivered within the service area of an urban retail water supplier or its urban wholesale water supplier for either nonpotable or potable use or that replenishes a groundwater basin and supplements the groundwater supply available to an urban retail water supplier from the calculation of any urban water use target or reduction in urban per capita water use.

SEC. 2.Section 10608.12 of the Water Code is amended to read:
10608.12.

Unless the context otherwise requires, the following definitions govern the construction of this part:

(a)“Agricultural water supplier” means a water supplier, either publicly or privately owned, providing water to 10,000 or more irrigated acres, excluding recycled water. “Agricultural water supplier” includes a supplier or contractor for water, regardless of the basis of right, that distributes or sells water for ultimate resale to customers. “Agricultural water supplier” does not include the department.

(b)“Base daily per capita water use” means at least one of the following:

(1)The urban retail water supplier’s estimate of its average gross water use, reported in gallons per capita per day and calculated over a continuous 10-year period ending no earlier than December 31, 2004, and no later than December 31, 2010.

(2)For an urban retail water supplier that meets at least 10 percent of its 2008 measured retail water demand through recycled water that is delivered within the service area of an urban retail water supplier or its urban wholesale water supplier, the urban retail water supplier may extend the calculation described in paragraph (1) up to an additional five years to a maximum of a continuous 15-year period ending no earlier than December 31, 2004, and no later than December 31, 2010.

(3)For the purposes of Section 10608.22, the urban retail water supplier’s estimate of its average gross water use, reported in gallons per capita per day and calculated over a continuous five-year period ending no earlier than December 31, 2007, and no later than December 31, 2010.

(c)“Baseline commercial, industrial, and institutional water use” means an urban retail water supplier’s base daily per capita water use for commercial, industrial, and institutional users.

(d)“Commercial water user” means a water user that provides or distributes a product or service.

(e)“Compliance daily per capita water use” means the gross water use during the final year of the reporting period, reported in gallons per capita per day.

(f)“Disadvantaged community” means a community with an annual median household income that is less than 80 percent of the statewide annual median household income.

(g)“Gross water use” means the total volume of water, whether treated or untreated, entering the distribution system of an urban retail water supplier, excluding all of the following:

(1)Recycled water that is delivered within the service area of an urban retail water supplier or its urban wholesale water supplier.

(2)The net volume of water that the urban retail water supplier places into long-term storage.

(3)The volume of water the urban retail water supplier conveys for use by another urban water supplier.

(4)The volume of water delivered for agricultural use, except as otherwise provided in subdivision (f) of Section 10608.24.

(h)“Industrial water user” means a water user that is primarily a manufacturer or processor of materials as defined by the North American Industry Classification System code sectors 31 to 33, inclusive, or an entity that is a water user primarily engaged in research and development.

(i)“Institutional water user” means a water user dedicated to public service. This type of user includes, among other users, higher education institutions, schools, courts, churches, hospitals, government facilities, and nonprofit research institutions.

(j)“Interim urban water use target” means the midpoint between the urban retail water supplier’s base daily per capita water use and the urban retail water supplier’s urban water use target for 2020.

(k)“Locally cost effective” means that the present value of the local benefits of implementing an agricultural efficiency water management practice is greater than or equal to the present value of the local cost of implementing that measure.

(l)“Process water” means water used for producing a product or product content or water used for research and development, including, but not limited to, continuous manufacturing processes, water used for testing and maintaining equipment used in producing a product or product content, and water used in combined heat and power facilities used in producing a product or product content. Process water does not mean incidental water uses not related to the production of a product or product content, including, but not limited to, water used for restrooms, landscaping, air-conditioning, heating, kitchens, and laundry.

(m)“Recycled water” means recycled water, as defined in subdivision (n) of Section 13050, that is used to offset potable demand, including recycled water supplied for nonpotable uses and recycled water supplied for potable reuse. “Potable reuse” means the planned use of municipal wastewater that has gone through multiple barrier treatment processes to produce or supplement a drinking water supply that has at least an equivalent level of public health protection as other sources of water supply permitted under the California Safe Drinking Water Act (Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 116270) of Part 12 of Division 104 of the Health and Safety Code).

(n)“Regional water resources management” means sources of supply resulting from watershed-based planning for sustainable local water reliability or any of the following alternative sources of water:

(1)The capture and reuse of stormwater or rainwater.

(2)The use of recycled water.

(3)The desalination of brackish groundwater.

(4)The conjunctive use of surface water and groundwater in a manner that is consistent with the safe yield of the groundwater basin.

(o)“Reporting period” means the years for which an urban retail water supplier reports compliance with the urban water use targets.

(p)“Urban retail water supplier” means a water supplier, either publicly or privately owned, that directly provides potable municipal water to more than 3,000 end users or that supplies more than 3,000 acre-feet of potable water annually at retail for municipal purposes.

(q)“Urban water use target” means the urban retail water supplier’s targeted future daily per capita water use.

(r)“Urban wholesale water supplier,” means a water supplier, either publicly or privately owned, that provides more than 3,000 acre-feet of water annually at wholesale for potable municipal purposes.

SECTION 1.

 Section 1058.6 is added to the Water Code, to read:

1058.6.
 Water conservation does not include curtailment of use of recycled water.

SEC. 2.

 Section 10609.1 is added to the Water Code, to read:

10609.1.
 (a) The board, in consultation with the department, shall adopt long-term standards for urban water conservation and water use by May 20, 2021. The standards shall include, but are not limited to, standards for both of the following:
(1) Indoor residential water use.
(2) Outdoor irrigation in connection with domestic, commercial, industrial, or institutional water use.
(b) By May 20, 2021, the board, in consultation with the department, shall adopt performance measures for commercial, industrial, and institutional water use designed to produce measurable water use efficiency improvements and that build upon industry best practices, use of innovative technologies, and existing data on cost-effectiveness. Performance measures shall include, but are not limited to, water audits, converting mixed commercial, industrial, and institutional water irrigation accounts to dedicated irrigation meters, and water management planning.
(c) Urban water suppliers shall do both of the following:
(1) Calculate a water use target, in accordance with regulations adopted by the board pursuant to subdivision (a), no later than July 1, beginning the calendar year after the board adopts the standards. Each urban water supplier’s water use target shall be comprised of an indoor residential volume, an outdoor irrigation volume, and a volume for water loss as specified in Section 10608.34. The outdoor irrigation volume shall exclude potable water for agricultural use as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 51201 of the Government Code.
(2) Annually submit a report to the department by July 1, beginning the calendar year after the board adopts standards pursuant to subdivision (a). The report shall describe the supplier’s calculated water use target, actual water use consistent with criteria described in paragraph (1), documentation of commercial, industrial, and institutional performance measure implementation, and a narrative describing progress made towards meeting the target. The department shall post the reports and information on its Internet Web site.
(d) (1) The department, in coordination with the board, shall conduct necessary studies and investigations and recommend, no later than October 1, 2020, standards for indoor residential use and outdoor irrigation for adoption by the board in accordance with this chapter. After 2026, the department shall recommend updates to its initial recommendation to the board in years ending in 2 and 7 to allow for consideration by the board in accordance with subdivision (h).
(2) In recommending standards pursuant to this subdivision, the department, in coordination with the board, shall develop guidelines and methodologies as necessary for calculating irrigable landscape area, irrigated landscape area, and indoor water use for the board to consider in adoption of the standards.
(e) (1) Before setting performance measures for commercial, industrial, and institutional water use, the department, in coordination with the board, shall solicit broad public participation relating to all of the following:
(A) Recommendations for a commercial, industrial, and institutional classification system for California.
(B) Recommendations for setting minimum size thresholds for converting mixed commercial, industrial, and institutional meters to dedicated irrigation meters, and evaluating and recommending technologies that could be used in lieu of requiring dedicated irrigation meters.
(C) Recommendations for commercial, industrial, and institutional best management practices, including, but not limited to, water audits and water management plans for commercial, industrial, and institutional customers over a recommended size, volume, or other threshold.
(2) In their solicitation for public participation pursuant to paragraph (1), the department and the board shall invite representatives from throughout the state, including at least one representative from each hydrologic region, representing the following categories:
(A) Urban retail water suppliers, including combined retail water and wastewater agencies.
(B) Urban wholesale water suppliers.
(C) Academic experts.
(D) Economic development interests.
(E) Business community representatives.
(F) Environmental and environmental justice organizations.
(G) Commercial water users.
(H) Industrial water users.
(I) Institutional water users.
(3) Recommendations of appropriate performance measures for commercial, industrial, or institutional water use shall consider the 2013 report to the Legislature by the commercial, industrial, and institutional task force entitled, “Water Use Best Management Practices,” and shall support the economic productivity of California’s commercial, industrial, and institutional sectors.
(f) Standards adopted by the board shall include a credit for recycled water as set forth below:
(1) For the outdoor irrigation standard, nonpotable recycled water shall be given a special landscape allowance as set forth in the department’s Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance, except that the allowance shall include a variance to the standard that allows recycled water to be applied at an agronomic rate that is a rate of application of recycled water that is necessary to satisfy the watering and nutritional requirements of the plants and is in compliance with any applicable salt and nutrient management plan.
(2) A supplier shall receive a credit for the volume of its potable water reuse, on an acre-foot basis, to meet its target.
(g) The department and the board shall solicit broad public participation relating to the development of the long-term standards for urban water conservation and use. In the solicitation for public participation for the purposes of this section, the department and the board shall invite representatives of small, medium, and large urban retail water suppliers from throughout the state, including at least one representative from each hydrologic region, academic experts, urban water wholesalers, urban water suppliers, business organizations, environmental and environmental justice organizations, and combined retail water and wastewater agencies.
(h) (1) After 2026, the board and the department shall consider, in years ending in two and seven, whether the board should update long-term standards for urban water conservation and water use and commercial, industrial, and institutional performance measures. Before proposing new standards for board adoption, the department and the board shall solicit broad public participation as described in subdivision (g).
(2) The department and the board may conduct additional studies, pilot projects, and other necessary actions in order to determine whether to update standards and commercial, industrial, or institutional performance measures.
(i) Notwithstanding Section 15300.2 of Title 14 of the California Code of Regulations, an action of the board taken under this chapter shall be deemed to be a Class 8 action, within the meaning of Section 15308 of Title 14 of the California Code of Regulations, if the action does not involve relaxation of existing water conservation or water use standards.

SEC. 3.

 Section 13551.5 is added to the Water Code, to read:

13551.5.
 (a) It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this section Assembly Bill 869 of the 2016–17 Regular Session to do all of the following:
(1) Encourage continued investment in water reuse as a means to increase water supply reliability and diversification within the state.
(2) Encourage new investment and protect existing local investments made by urban water suppliers in drought resiliency and drought resilient supplies, including recycled water and potable reuse, in order to better prepare local communities and the state for periods of drought and shortage.
(3) Expand the volume of water recycled to put to beneficial use in the state through new investments in water recycling.
(4) Recognize that federal and state regulation of recycled water requires efficient use of recycled water and prohibits overuse.
(5) Encourage local agencies to take steps to prepare for the effects of climate change.

(b)An urban retail water supplier shall not be required by a regulation to reduce the amount of recycled water it produces, sells, or distributes for beneficial potable or nonpotable uses at any time, including, but not limited to, during a period for which the Governor has issued a proclamation of a state of emergency under the California Emergency Services Act (Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 8550) of Division 1 of Title 2 of the Government Code) based on statewide or local drought conditions pursuant to Chapter 3.3 (commencing with Section 365) of Division 1 and during a water shortage emergency condition pursuant to Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 350) of Division 1.

(c)For purposes of this section, “urban retail water supplier” and “recycled water” have the same meanings as provided in Section 10608.12.

(d)

(b) Nothing in this section shall be construed to supersede, diminish, alter, impair, or otherwise affect any existing rights, including, but not limited to, existing legal protections, both procedural and substantive, under water rights law.