The Board of Supervisors finds that:
It is the responsibility of all water users in California to make effective use of available water resources. In San Francisco, water is distributed by the Water Department, a department of the Public Utilities Commission, which also supplies water to 2.6 million people in San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Alameda counties. The San Francisco Department of Public Works constructs and operates wastewater reclamation facilities and administers building, plumbing and structural construction codes.
The comprehensive management of urban water supplies should consider programs for developing the use of nonpotable and reclaimed water supplies. The Department of Public Works discharges approximately 100 million gallons per day of treated wastewater into San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean. If this wastewater is given further treatment, it may be capable of being used for irrigation and other nonpotable purposes, thereby reducing potable water demand, and potentially making water available for conjunctive use, groundwater recharge, and other environmental benefits. Further, groundwater in aquifers beneath San Francisco may be utilized for potable and nonpotable purposes.
In 1989 the Board of Supervisors passed Resolution 389-89 urging the Department of Public Works and Water Department to expand wastewater reclamation and reuse in San Francisco. Preliminary feasibility studies prepared in 1989 indicated that reclamation could be a viable source of water for use within the City. Based on the results of the preliminary studies, the Departments began development of more extensive studies that will be completed in mid-1992. Preparation of these studies has involved many departments, including the Fire Department, Recreation and Park Department, City Planning Department, Department of Public Health, and several citizen and technical advisory groups. Public meetings have been held beginning in July 1991 and will continue for the duration of the projects.
If established, a comprehensive nonpotable and reclaimed water use program would result in the development of facilities to reclaim and reuse treated wastewater to assist in meeting the future water requirements of the City by supplementing existing surface and groundwater supplies.
Nonpotable and reclaimed water are resources that should be developed for beneficial use wherever it is reasonable to do so, consistent with legal requirements, economic considerations, the public health, safety and welfare, and the preservation of the environment.
This ordinance will enhance achievement of the City’s goals for water supply use and preservation and protection of the environment by requiring the Water Department and the Department of Public Works to prepare a coordinated, comprehensive citywide plan for the efficient expansion of the use of reclaimed water and groundwater sources by all water consumers in San Francisco.
(Added by Ord. 390-91, App. 11/7/91 and Ord. 391-91, App. 11/7/91)