Safe Water Engineering

Safe Water Engineering, LLC

Safe Water Engineering specializes in drinking water quality consulting, providing technical assistance to water utilities, and policy analysis at federal, state, and local levels.


Photo by    Jean Lannen

Photo by Jean Lannen


Design and implement effective and innovative programs for the provision of reliable and safe drinking water,

Identify through practice and research effective drinking water practices that are implementable, cost effective, and protective of public health, and

Ensure that legislation, policies and regulations support and encourage the most effective practices.

Elin Betanzo is the founder of Safe Water Engineering LLC, a small consulting firm working to improve access to safe drinking water through engineering and policy consulting.   

In August of 2015, Elin played a critical role in uncovering the Flint Water Crisis by encouraging Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, a Flint pediatrician, to conduct a study that discovered elevated lead levels in children living in Flint, Michigan. Elin continues to work on lead and drinking water policy at federal, state, and local levels. Current projects include working with the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department to establish their lead service line replacement program, improving public education about lead in drinking water, and helping water utilities comply with the federal and state lead and copper rules.

Elin has nearly 20 years of experience working on drinking water science, engineering, and policy issues. She worked for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in the Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water writing and implementing national drinking water regulations, for the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission where she led water system master planning and hydraulic modeling, and for the Northeast-Midwest Institute leading their Safe Drinking Water Research and Policy Program.

Elin holds a Master of Science in Environmental Engineering and a Water Quality Management Certificate from Virginia Tech. She also has a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Piano Performance from Carnegie Mellon University. Elin is a Professional Engineer registered in Michigan, Maryland and Virginia, and a certified water system operator in Maryland. She served on the Federal Advisory Committee on Water Information from 2014-2017.


  • Federal and state Lead and Copper Rule compliance assistance for water utilities

  • Educational presentations on drinking water quality and policy, including “Everything you need to know about lead in drinking water but didn’t know you needed to ask”

  • Drinking water technical assistance and education for decision makers

  • Proactive strategies for minimizing risk of lead in drinking water

  • Safe Drinking Water Act policy and regulatory analysis

  • Safe Drinking Water Act compliance assistance for water utilities

  • Regional planning

  • Asset management

  • Distribution system water quality