Investor-owned water utilities (IOUs) throughout California are increasing efficiency and saving money by delivering their consumer confidence reports (CCRs) electronically. In the wake of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s recent CCR Retrospective Review, (http://water.epa.gov/lawsregs/rulesregs/sdwa/ccr/regulations.cfm), community water systems are now allowed to provide customers with annual CCRs by email or a website link.
“It’s an exciting opportunity to deliver more information more efficiently without the space, weight and cost constraints of mailing the reports,” said Justin Skarb, Government & Community Relations Manager, California Water Service Company (Cal Water).
Annual CCRs are required by the Safe Drinking Water Act to inform customers of regulated contaminants found in drinking water as well as provide specific information on health effects and treatments related to violations of drinking water standards.
IOUs spend hundreds of thousands of dollars each year to print and mail CCRs. With the new delivery method, the money previously spent on printing and mailing can be invested in infrastructure upgrades that improve water quality and create jobs while helping to reduce operating costs.
Skarb cited additional advantages to the new ruling: “Electronic CCRs are more easily translated into languages other than English, which can expand the accessibility of the reports. Likewise, electronic
CCRs do not suffer from the same space restrictions as paper reports, which can allow utilities to provide customers with water quality information that they would not have otherwise received.”
The option to continue receiving printed CCRs by mail still will be available for customers who prefer that delivery method.