Science Inventory

Total Water Management - Report


Rodrigo, D., E. Calva, AND A. Cannan. Total Water Management - Report. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/600/R-12/551, 2012.


This study introduces TWM as an approach to plan and manage water systems in an urban watershed, and to illustrate and communicate the potential benefits of TWM to utility managers, municipalities, policy decision-makers and practitioners. The first element of the study was a comprehensive literature review that summarized TWM strategies being implemented in the United States and internationally. The second element was development of a standardized analytic approach that can be used to guide those wishing to implement TWM. The third element was the development of a desktop analysis to demonstrate how two TWM alternatives would perform against the traditional approach to water management, using the City of Los Angeles as a case study.


There is a growing need for urban water managers to take a more holistic view of their water resource systems as population growth, urbanization, and current operations put different stresses on the environment and urban infrastructure. Total Water Management (TWM) is an approach that examines urban water systems in a more interconnected manner, focusing on reducing water demands, increasing water recycling and reuse, creating water supply assets from stormwater management, matching water quality to end-use needs, and achieving environmental goals through multi-purpose, multi-benefit infrastructure. This study documents the benefits of TWM to water management decision-makers and can be used to support the development of management techniques that could be adopted in order to improve urban systems. This study includes a comprehensive literature review that summarizes TWM principles and real world applications in the United States and abroad. The literature review was organized into different regions of the country in order to reflect geographic water management drivers and challenges. An evaluation protocol for analyzing TWM is presented, along with a detailed discussion of modeling techniques. A desk top analysis was conducted to demonstrate how TWM alternatives would perform against traditional approaches to water management using a systems model. The model simulates supply reliability, total lifecycle costs, water wastewater capacity, quality of receiving waters, and a number of environmental indicators. The Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) software, developed by the Stockholm Environment Institute, was used as the modeling platform. The City of Los Angeles was used as the case study for desktop analysis, using real data within a real planning context. The City was divided into four demand areas, each with its own connections to surface water, groundwater, and imported water supply sources, i.e., water from outside City limits, as well as connections

Record Details:

Product Published Date: 09/11/2012
Record Last Revised: 11/15/2012
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 245291