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Source Water Assessment and Protection Programs Leading the Way for Comprehensive Watershed Management Planning

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The Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) is using the Source Water Assessment and Protection (SWAP) provisions of the Safe Drinking Water Act as the driver to coordinate various federal and state regulatory programs to address water quality and point and nonpoint pollution within the Schuylkill River Watershed. A complete inventory of both point and non-point sources of pollution was assessed to determine their relative impacts on source water quality and drinking water treatment efficacy. This was the most detailed inventory of pollution sources within the watershed and the first to produce a relative understanding as to which sources were the most important in terms of affecting drinking water source quality. The final inventory of priority sites contains both point and non-point sources. It is these priority sites that subsequent comprehensive planning and implementation actions will focus on. This paper will explore the process by which the PWD has managed to successfully complete the assessment phase and how we plan to use the results to develop a watershed protection program. Despite being a mandate from the Safe Drinking Water Act, the PWD plans to incorporate the results from the Source Water Assessments into a larger, comprehensive planning process that includes high priority remedies for other Clean Water Act mandates of fishable/swimmable standards.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2002

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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