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U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Office of Research and Development
National Center for Environmental Research
Science to Achieve Results (STAR) Program


2003 Treatment Technologies for Arsenic Removal for Small Drinking Water Systems

Opening date: September 30, 2002
Closing date: January 7, 2003

Summary of Program Requirements
Program Requirements and Description of Host Sites
Application Requirements and Evaluation Criteria
Review and Selection Process
Demonstration Program Roles
How to Apply
Application Form(s)


Program Title: Treatment Technologies for Arsenic Removal for Small Drinking Water Systems FY 2003
Sorting Code: 2003-Arsenic
Synopsis of Program: This solicitation seeks proposals for treatment technologies for cost-effective arsenic removal for small drinking water systems.

The objective of this program is to pre-qualify treatment technologies for a subsequent demonstration program which will evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of drinking water treatment technologies to meet the new arsenic maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 0.01 mg/l (10 ug/l) for varying source water quality conditions. For the purposes of this solicitation "treatment technologies"may also include process modifications and engineering approaches. Additionally, treatment technologies may be new or add-on. The program will evaluate the reliability of technologies for small systems; gauge simplicity of operation, maintenance and required operator skills; determine cost-effectiveness; and characterize treatment residuals.

Proposals selected under this competition will not receive direct monetary awards, but will be pre-qualified for subsequent demonstration projects that will be supported by EPA through funding to a third party contractor. The contractor will work with the local water authority and other parties as necessary to plan and implement the demonstration project. If a treatment technology is selected for demonstration, the proposer will be compensated (by the EPA contractor) for the technology and will participate in the installation and start-up of the technology. Successful proposers under this solicitation are not guaranteed that a demonstration project will be initiated.

Contact Person(s):

April Richards; Phone: 202-564-2297; email: richards.april@epa.gov

Bob Thurnau; Phone 513-569-7504; email: thurnau.bob@epa.gov

Applicable Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s) : 66.500

Eligibility Information

No limitations

Selection Information

Anticipated Type of Selection: Pre-Qualification for Demonstration Agreement

Estimated Number of Selections: Up to 12

Award Information

No funds will be directly awarded to the selected proposers under this solicitation. From those proposers pre-qualified, EPA anticipates selecting up to 12 proposals for demonstration. For those demonstrating, EPA will purchase any equipment or engineering services through an independent contractor and will pay for the installation of the equipment at the site. EPA will also purchase and provide supplies such as chemicals or media if needed.

Deadline/Target Dates

Letter of Intent Due Date: None

Application Proposal Due Date: January 7, 2003

(The deadline for receipt of the applications by NCER is no later than 4:00 p.m. ET.)


Recently available information on potential adverse health effects from arsenic in drinking water at the existing 0.05 mg/l MCL prompted Congress, in the 1996 Amendments to the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), to direct the EPA to reevaluate the arsenic standard to ensure public health protection. As a result, the 50-year-old MCL of 0.05 mg/l was reduced to 0.01 mg/l (10 ug/l). To ensure that the revised MCL was achievable, EPA developed an arsenic research plan and undertook a comprehensive set of treatability studies that included the following technologies: activated alumina, ion exchange, iron removal coagulation/filtration and lime softening. Although they did not perform with the same removal efficiencies, all were successful in reducing arsenic concentrations to meet the new MCL of 0.01 mg/l (10 ug/l). Due to financial and other constraints, the research program was not able to provide treatment solutions for all drinking water systems affected by the new standard.

In October 2001, EPA Administrator, Christine Todd Whitman, announced an initiative for additional research and development for cost-effective technologies to help small systems meet the new arsenic standard and to provide technical assistance to operators of small systems to reduce compliance costs. Therefore, to assist small community water systems (< 10,000 customers) in complying with the new standard, EPA intends to conduct a series of full-scale, long-term, on-site demonstrations of arsenic removal technologies, process modifications and engineering approaches. The EPA contractor will produce reports documenting the results of these demonstration projects.


Solicitation Objectives

The objective of this solicitation is to pre-qualify treatment technologies for a subsequent research demonstration program. This program will evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of drinking water treatment technologies, process modifications and engineering approaches to meet the new arsenic MCL of 10 ug/l at host site locations that have varied source water quality conditions. The program will evaluate the reliability of technologies for small systems, gauge simplicity of operation, maintenance and required operator skills, determine cost-effectiveness and characterize treatment residuals. There are several proven arsenic removal technologies (e.g., activated alumina, ion exchange, conventional coagulation, iron removal, lime softening, and membranes), but they are not easily applied to all systems without significant redesign and testing. EPA is aware that there are other commercially available arsenic treatment technologies for small systems (e.g., iron adsorptive media, coagulation/microfiltration) that may offer alternative treatment approaches and be more efficient and economical than traditional technologies. Process modifications and engineering approaches may also offer favorable alternatives to add-on treatment and may be more cost effective.


This solicitation seeks vendors, engineering firms and others to propose treatment technologies for the removal of arsenic to the revised MCL or lower. Technologies selected under this solicitation will be pre-qualified for demonstration at selected host sites whose names are shown below.

Host sites are public drinking water treatment facilities which were solicited via a Federal Register Notice (http://www.epa.gov/fedrgstr/EPA-WATER/2002/March/Day-28/w7493.htm). Proposers should select one or more of the host sites from the website shown below where their technology or engineering approach is expected to perform successfully.

All technologies must be commercially available for purchase with no additional development work required. Documentation to support the commercially available designation may include: patent, patent pending, operations & maintenance manual, pilot scale data, performance verification tests, full scale data, or other relevant information.

Arsenic treatment is a national problem and the arsenic treatment technologies selected for this demonstration program must be applicable to the wide variety of water quality conditions found throughout the US. In addition to reducing elevated arsenic concentrations, the proposed technologies should be able to accommodate varying levels of naturally occurring substances in the source water. Examples of possible treatment interferences are: manganese, sulfate, silicate, and phosphate. The pH of the source water and its relationship to the proposed technology is another important factor. The sites selected for demonstration incorporate the different water quality conditions reviewed above and reflect the different water quality conditions across the US. The treatment technology selected for each site must be compatible with the source water quality conditions listed for the site and provide information to support that claim.

Proposers may contact host sites to determine if their technology is suitable for the given water supply and compatible with the site conditions.

List of Host Sites

A list of host sites can be found at the website shown below. Site-specific information is provided including treatment capacity of host site and water quality characteristics.




Treatment technologies will be pre-qualified for participation in the demonstration program based on their treatment effectiveness and efficiency, their cost effectiveness and their operation and maintenance (O & M) requirements and applicability to the selected host site. Important criteria also include readiness and suitability for full-scale demonstration, applicability to the source water quality (arsenic and other water chemistry) at a selected host site, and ability to fill existing knowledge gaps. All treatment technologies proposed for these demonstrations must be commercially available for treatment of arsenic in drinking water. The demonstration program is not meant to be a developmental arena for new emerging technologies nor a forum for constructing, testing, modifying or redesigning equipment and technologies.

For this program, point-of-use (POU)/point-of-entry (POE) devices will not be considered, as they are being evaluated elsewhere.

Since the arsenic occurrence profile for the geographic U.S. is varied, the technologies employed or engineering approaches to control arsenic concentrations may also be varied. Treatment technologies should address water quality conditions that are associated with a specific host site.

Proposal Requirements

Each applicant is required to submit a technical proposal. The order of material presented in the technical proposal should correspond to the 'Outline of Proposal and Evaluation Criteria' presented later in this section. This outline is designed to cover material necessary for evaluating the proposal.

Evaluation of a proposed technology by a peer panel and EPA will be based on the material presented in the proposal. The three main evaluation criteria listed below are of equal importance.

Proposals should not exceed thirty (32) pages, including cover sheets, abstract, charts, tables, diagrams and drawings and appendices. Font used should be 12-point, Times New Roman, and the format should be single-spaced with 1-inch margins. Proprietary data or confidential business information (CBI) should not be included. A summary of previous performance data is particularly important. Quality Assurance (QA) documentation for the collected data should be included. Company literature, brochures, resumes and references also may be attached as appendices. All appended materials will be counted toward the 32-page limit.

An abstract, not to exceed two pages, must be included which describes the treatment technology, and summarizes the three elements of the proposal outlined below.

An original and eight (8) copies of the proposal should be submitted.

Outline of Proposal & Evaluation Criteria

I. Treatment Effectiveness and Efficiency

  1. Technology Description and Function
  2. Process Flow Sheet
  3. Capability of treating source water with characteristics of the selected host site
  4. Capability of meeting the new arsenic MCL
  5. History of full scale and pilot-scale operation
  6. Strength of supporting data: lab, pilot, full scale
  7. Availability of third-party test data
  8. Pre/Post treatment needs for a specific host site (including residuals handling)
  9. Patent citation, if applicable

II. Cost Effectiveness; Capital and O & M Costs

  1. Capital costs including engineering and installation
  2. O & M costs
  3. Pre/post treatment costs
  4. Narrative explanation of why the technology or engineering approach is superior to proven conventional treatment in terms of cost

III. Operation and Maintenance Requirements and System Applicability to Host Site

  1. Operator skill requirements
  2. Automation and process control capability
  3. Level of required maintenance - back washing, cleaning, etc.
  4. Chemical usage and handling requirements
  5. Safety requirements
  6. Physical Characteristics: description of equipment
  7. Unit size and Transportability: space requirements
  8. Energy requirements
  9. Adaptability to existing system (add on technology)
  10. Engineering/installation requirements (package vs. specially designed systems)
  11. Environmental impacts

Discussion of Evaluation Criteria

A brief discussion of the three identified evaluation criteria are presented to clarify certain aspects of the criteria. These discussions are intended to assist the proposer, but are not exhaustive.

Treatment Effectiveness and Efficiency:

This section of the proposal should explain the technical aspects of the treatment technology and describe its operation and function. Capabilities and limitations should be addressed as well as the ability of the technology to meet the new MCL. Detailed performance data are essential. Proposed treatment technologies should include adequate data to determine their potential success as a compliance strategy. Submission of data generated during the development and testing of the treatment technology that supports claimed treatment effectiveness is very important. Third party evaluations and appropriate Quality Assurance information are important components of the supporting data. CBI should be omitted from the proposal.

Arsenic treatment systems typically concentrate arsenic and other pollutants resulting in a liquid waste stream or a contaminated solid. Proposals should outline onsite handling of wastes and ultimate disposal options. Waste generation, handling and treatment costs need to be factored into the cost-effectiveness section of the proposal.

Cost-effectiveness--Capital and O&M Costs:

This section of the proposal should explain how the arsenic removal technology will provide a technical and economic advantage over existing conventional technologies. Applicants may wish to reference the new Arsenic Rule (http://www.epa.gov/safewater/ars/arsenic_finalrule.html) and compare the best available technology (BAT) cost to that of the proposed technology or engineering approach.

Arsenic treatment technologies with demonstrated cost and performance information will be viewed more favorably by the peer reviewers than those without this type of data. A critical factor in the evaluation of proposals is the cost of purchasing and maintaining the treatment technology. This section of the proposal should include a conceptual design covering the capital costs of purchasing and installing the arsenic treatment technology, the expected O & M costs, and an analysis of the technical and economic advantages over conventional systems at the selected host site. All costs should be presented on a per-unit basis where possible (i.e., $ per 1000 gallons treated). Construction of facilities to house the treatment technology should not be included in the cost estimate.

Operation and Maintenance Requirements & System Applicability to Host Site:

The complexity of the different arsenic treatments or engineering approaches will vary and this will be translated into different O&M requirements. This section of the proposal should discuss in detail the operation of the proposed treatment technology and relate its operation to the required maintenance procedures. Maintenance of critical components should be highlighted and an estimate of the time and cost should be included. (This information should also be presented or referenced in the Cost-effectiveness section.)

This section of the proposal should demonstrate how the technology or engineering solution can be successfully matched with the host site's physical plant, associated piping and water chemistry. Energy requirements and waste disposal capabilities need to be addressed as well as other environmental impacts such as the use of specialty chemicals or fugitive emissions from the process. To insure this section of the proposal is accurate, communication with the proposed host site may be necessary.


All proposals submitted for this competition will be evaluated by an external (non-EPA) panel of experts. Proposals will be ranked 'highly recommended', 'recommended' or 'not recommended'. Following the external peer review, EPA will conduct an internal review of the 'highly recommended' and 'recommended' proposals and compare them with site demonstration opportunities to determine which technologies or engineering approaches will be pursued given available funding and other program factors. Only one proposal will be selected by EPA for demonstration at each site.

The EPA is under no obligation to select any proposal or any specific number of proposals. All proposers will receive peer review comments.


Role of Technology Developer/Engineering Firm or Other Proposer After Successful Competition

The technology proposer, who is selected as pre-qualified under this competition, will be a participant to the agreement developed between EPA and the host site for the demonstration. The role of the proposer will be limited to providing the approved technology or design modification (through purchase by the EPA contractor) and providing consultation on the engineering, installation and operation of the technology. The proposer will be responsible for working with EPA, its contractor and the site to install the technology or the engineering solution at the host site. The proposer will also assist the EPA and host site personnel with the startup phase of the demonstration. The proposer will provide guidance and training on operation and/or maintenance of any equipment.

Once the technology or engineering solution has been installed and the startup phase is completed, the proposer may monitor the data being generated from the demonstration and may respond to questions posed by the system operator. The host site will be responsible for operation of the technology or engineering approach. Since the objective of the demonstration is to collect 'real-world' operating data on the performance, reliability and simplicity of operation, the proposer will not have personnel on-site to provide daily guidance on the operation of the technology or engineering approach or make modifications to the equipment. EPA will not have personnel on-site. The proposer may need to visit the site on occasion, but all site visits must be coordinated with EPA.

The proposer may wish to discuss potential for demonstration of their technology with specific host sites prior to submission of a proposal.

Role of the Host Site

At each demonstration site, an agreement will be developed between EPA and the site to specify the duties and responsibilities of each party and any special conditions that apply. In part, these responsibilities are expected to include:

  • daily operation of the arsenic treatment technology
  • sample collection according to project plan
  • preparation & shipment of samples (EPA underwrites the cost)
  • documentation of maintenance data
  • maintenance of inventory of spare parts and maintenance items (EPA underwrites the cost)
  • coordination of any service calls
  • documentation of waste disposal operations

Any new or add-on arsenic treatment technology will be operated by the host facility in accordance with manufacturer specifications.

Role of EPA and Support Contractor

  • The EPA contractor will work with the host site and the successful proposer to design the demonstration project plan and will oversee all aspects of its conduct.

  • The EPA contractor will purchase and supervise the installation of all arsenic treatment technologies or engineering services from successful proposers.

  • The EPA and its contractor, in conjunction with the host site and the successful proposer, will prepare the plans and specifications for submission to the State for approval of the installation of the technology or engineering approach.

  • The EPA contractor will prepare a site specific sampling protocol and a quality assurance project plan (QAPP) for the demonstration project (see www.epa.gov/quality for guidance on the content). If chemical analyses are performed on site, they will be included in the approved QAPP that must be in place before initiating any analytical work. Analytical chemistry costs for arsenic and other nonstandard project-related analyses will be the responsibility of EPA. Data analysis and reporting will also be underwritten by EPA.

  • The EPA contractor, in consultation with the host facility, will provide a final report summarizing the performance and O & M conditions for the treatment technology. The report will include the performance of the arsenic treatment technology, cost effectiveness, required maintenance, unexpected repairs, and waste management. Training of the operator(s) along with any adverse impacts on their regularly scheduled duties will also be documented.

At the conclusion of the project, EPA will dismantle and remove the arsenic treatment technology or negotiate a transfer of title with the host facility.


Background on development of Arsenic Rule:


Information on Arsenic Rule implementation research program:



No funds will be directly awarded to the selected proposers under this solicitation. From those proposers pre-qualified, EPA anticipates selecting up to 12 proposals for demonstration. For those demonstrating, EPA will purchase any equipment or engineering services through an independent contractor and will pay for the installation of the equipment at the site. EPA will also purchase and provide supplies such as chemicals or media if needed.


Further information, if needed, may be obtained from the EPA officials indicated below. Email inquiries are preferred.

April Richards (202)564-2297, richards.april@epa.gov

Bob Thurnau (513)569-7504, thurnau.bob@epa.gov


The proposal and abstract must be prepared in accordance with these instructions. All proposals must include the Proposal Cover Sheet and the Application for Federal Assistance. Both of these forms are included in this solicitation. Informal, incomplete, or unsigned proposals will be returned without review. The original, signed copy of the application must not be bound or stapled in any way. The other eight (8) required copies of the application should be secured with paper or binder clips or secure staples.

Send completed applications via regular mail to:

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Peer Review Division (8703R)
Sorting Code: 2003-Arsenic
1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20460

The following address must be used for express mail-delivered applications:

U. S. Environmental Protection Agency
Peer Review Division (8703R)
Sorting Code: 2003-Arsenic
Room B-10105
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20004

Phone: (202) 564-6939 (for express mail applications)

Courier- or personally-delivered applications must be brought to the Ronald Reagan Building, 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20004. The courier must come to the EPA Visitors Lobby and tell the security guard that he/she has a delivery for the EPA mail room. The courier will be required to sign a visitor's log, and will be directed to the EPA mail room. The mail room is open from 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. weekdays, exclusive of Federal holidays. If the applicant requires a receipt for the delivery, he or she will need to provide a form which the mail room person will sign.


Proposal Cover Sheet
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Treatment Technologies for Arsenic Removal for Small Drinking Water Systems

Proposal Title:______________________________________________________




Firm Name:___________________________________________________________

Contact:_____________________________ Telephone: ________________

email: _____________________________ Fax: ________________

Mailing Address:______________________________________________________

City:_______________________ State:________________Zip:________________

Selected Host Site:___________________________________________________________

Technical Abstract (Two pages or Less, Must be Publishable): (Abstract must include a description of the technology, and address each of the three elements of the evaluation criteria.)

Get Adobe PDF version of forms below (click)


Previous Editions Not Useable Standard Form 424 (Rev. 4.88)

Prescribed by OMB Circular A-102

Authorized for Local Reproduction


Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 45 minutes per response, including time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection of information. Send comments regarding the burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including suggestions for reducing this burden, to the Office of Management and Budget, Paperwork Reduction Project (0348-0043), Washington, DC 20503.


This is a standard form used by applicants as a required face sheet for preapplications and applications submitted for Federal assistance. It will be used by Federal agencies to obtain applicant certification that States which have established a review and comment procedure in response to Executive Order 12372 and have selected the program to be included in their process, have been given an opportunity to review the applicant's submission.

  1. Non-construction.

  2. Not applicable.

  3. Not applicable.

  4. Not applicable.

  5. Legal name of applicant, name of primary organizational unit which will undertake the activity, complete address of the applicant, and name and telephone number of the person to contact on matters related to this application.

  6. Enter Employer Identification Number (EIN) as assigned by the Internal Revenue Service.

  7. Enter the appropriate letter in the space provided. (Should be N. Other________.)

  8. Complete.

  9. Complete.

  10. Complete.

  11. Enter a brief descriptive title of the project.

  12. List only the largest political entities affected (e.g., State, counties, cities).

  13. Not applicable.

  14. List the applicant's Congressional District and any District(s) affected by the program or project.

  15. Not applicable (since no funds directly awarded under this solicitation).

  16. Complete.

  17. This question applies to the applicant organization, not the person who signs as the authorized representative. Categories of debt include delinquent audit disallowances, loans and taxes.

  18. To be signed by the authorized representative of the applicant.

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