Research Priority Program Research Areas

Projects funded before the integration between the Water Research Foundation and The Water Environment & Reuse Foundation were done so as part of the Focus Area and Solicited Research programs, respectively. Projects funded post integration, were done so as part of the Research Priority Program.

Active Research Areas

Emerging Disinfection Byproducts


Since the discovery of trihalomethanes (THMs) in drinking water in the early 1970s, disinfection byproducts (DBPs) have become a major driver for United States regulations. To date, more than 600...

Lead and Copper Management


Water utilities play a critical role in protecting public health by minimizing lead and copper levels in drinking water. Household plumbing and service lines can contain lead and copper pipes...

Linkages in Receiving Water Quality


The development of scientifically sound nutrient goals (e.g., TMDLs and site‐specific numeric criteria) that produce ecologically relevant outcomes remains one of the highest‐profile challenges facing states and the regulated community...

Advancing System-Level Resilience for Water Infrastructure


While water infrastructure is deteriorating, water utilities are also faced with many challenges, including severe/extreme weather events, climate change, earthquake, flood/drought. America's Water Infrastructure Act (AWIA) enacted in 2018 requires...

Energy Production & Efficiency


Energy is usually the second-highest cost item of a water utility’s operating budget. Many opportunities exist for the design and operational optimization of electricity use for water supply and treatment...

Intelligent Water Systems


Identify, evaluate, and communicate best practices for the application of advanced sensing technologies and networks to improve compliance strategies and efficiency of operations and watershed management. This research area builds...

Completed Research Areas