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Arsenic Treatment Technology Demonstrations

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

Small drinking water system operators face many challenges, including

  • meeting EPA regulatory requirements;
  • determining the best low-cost technology to use; and
  • funding the technology.

Arsenic Rule

In 2001, EPA adopted a new standard lowering the permissible amount of arsenic in drinking water. This research improved the assessment and control of arsenic contamination. The limit was set at 10 micrograms per liter (µg/L), previously 50 µg/L. To help states meet these new standards, EPA researchers developed and evaluated innovative methods and cost-effective technologies.  These demonstrations provided states and water utility operators with important information about removing arsenic from drinking water

Arsenic Removal Technology Demonstrations

EPA funded the following at each demonstration location:

  • Technology and system purchase
  • Engineering and permitting support
  • Installation
  • System operation for one year
  • Performance study costs

The utility at each demonstration location funded the following:

  • Facility costs
  • Waste disposal 
  • Operators

Engineering firms, small water systems, and state agencies used arsenic removal demonstrations performance and cost information to make informed decisions on the use of arsenic treatment technologies. To assist states and water utility operators in meeting the new arsenic standard, EPA provided training and technical assistance materials. This included:

  • Workshops
  • Software
  • Design manuals
  • Webcasts

This offered states and operators practical information to comply with the Arsenic Rule (2001).

The demonstrations

  • determined capital, operational, and maintenance costs;
  • evaluated the performance of the process;
  • characterized the residuals;
  • evaluated the effectiveness of residuals disposal processes and the effect of residuals on the existing disposal process; and 
  • determined the effect of arsenic treatment on distribution systems.

Arsenic Treatment Technology Demonstration Research