Water Online's EPA Update: February 4, 2013
Welcome to Water Online’s review of the latest U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations, resources, and activities related to the water, wastewater, and stormwater industries. EPA offices and programs covered in this installment are listed below. Click on an office or program name to go directly to that section of the article.
Office of Water (OW)
- EPA Stormwater Pollution Prevention Webinar: Stormwater Overview & Lessons Learned
- Gulf Coast Multi-Sector Infrastructure Protection and Crisis Response Workshop, February 20-21
- Low Impact Development Fact Sheets Available Online
- EPA Announces Call for Presentations for 2013 EPA Community Involvement Training Conference
- Updated Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool Available for Download
- Updated Version of Consequence Analysis Software Tool Now Available
- EPA Releases Coastal Wetland Review Reports
- Climate Ready Estuaries Releases 2012 Progress Report and Related Publications
- Success Spotlight: Buttahatchee River, Mississippi
Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Program
- ETV Verified Technologies
- Vendor Solicitations
Other EPA News
- EPA Resolves Violations With Four Guam Companies For Hazardous Materials Reporting Failures
- EPA Details Results Of $100M Federal Effort To Clean Up Navajo Uranium Contamination
- EPA Announces Settlements With Company For Multiple Violations Of Chemical Reporting And Pesticide Laws
- EPA’s 2011 Toxics Release Inventory Shows Air Pollutants Continue To Decline
Office of Water (OW)
EPA Stormwater Pollution Prevention Webinar: Stormwater Overview & Lessons Learned
On February 12, 2013, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time, EPA will hold a webinar for municipalities, counties, departments of transportation, universities, and other newcomers to the municipal stormwater program to provide an overview of the program. Local governments who are already developing and implementing their programs will share their experiences and lessons learned, and there will be time to answer participant questions. Participants must register in advance for the webinar. To register, please visit: https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/301716584.
Gulf Coast Multi-Sector Infrastructure Protection and Crisis Response Workshop, February 20-21
On February 20-21, 2013, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., EPA will co-host the Gulf Coast Multi-Sector Infrastructure Protection and Crisis Response Workshop in Biloxi, Mississippi. This workshop provides an excellent opportunity for drinking water and wastewater utilities to better understand cross-sector assets, threats, and response capabilities as well as to network with other local and state officials. Workshop topics include: water sector threats and vulnerabilities, cyber security, community-based water resiliency, emergency response capabilities, and information sharing. When registering, drinking water and wastewater utilities can select "other" and then type "water utility" into the blank box under the applicant work information section of the form. If you have any questions or need any additional information, please email Wisniewski.Lauren@epa.gov.
Low Impact Development Fact Sheets Available Online
EPA has just released a fact sheet series on the benefits of low impact development (LID) and addressing obstacles to wider adoption of LID. Low impact development is an approach to land development (or re-development) that works with nature to manage stormwater as close to its source as possible. It employs principles such as preserving and recreating natural landscape features, minimizing effective imperviousness to create functional and appealing site drainage that treat stormwater as a resource rather than a waste product. This seven-part series of fact sheets is primarily intended for state and local decision makers who are considering adoption of LID, but have concerns. The fact sheets explain the benefits of LID in clear terms and through examples, and directly address specific concerns that have been raised about adopting LID, thereby busting barriers. The fact sheets are available at http://water.epa.gov/polwaste/green/bbfs.cfm.
EPA Announces Call for Presentations for 2013 EPA Community Involvement Training Conference
EPA is seeking presentation and training proposals for the 13th EPA Community Involvement Training Conference, July 30 - August 1, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. This three-day conference seeks to inform and train EPA staff as well as Agency stakeholders and partners in best practices to enhance community involvement. The conference features plenary sessions with guest speakers, topical discussions, multiple 90-minute information sessions, and dozens of engaging and interactive training sessions. Additionally, there will be field trips demonstrating effective community involvement and cooperative conservation efforts in the Boston area, a poster session, exhibits, a technology demonstration area showcasing new tools, technology, and software, and a variety of networking opportunities. In 2011, the conference brought together more than 450 community involvement practitioners. Visit http://www.epa.gov/ciconference/index.htm for more information. Conference presentation and training proposals are being accepted through February 22, 2013 and details can be found at: http://www.epa.gov/ciconference/cfp_instructions.htm
Updated Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool Available for Download
An updated version of EPA's Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT) is now available for download at http://www.epa.gov/climatereadyutilities. The tool assists drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater utilities, in identifying climate change threats, assessing potential consequences, and evaluating adaptation options. Increasing climate readiness can help build resilience to extreme weather events. Developed under EPA's Climate Ready Water Utilities initiative, CREAT 2.0 builds on the capabilities of the first version of the tool by providing local historical climate data, as well as more comprehensive downscaled climate change projections. This new version uses a flexible framework, which allows utilities, regardless of size or type, to consider climate impacts at multiple locations and to assess multiple climate scenarios. Please email CREAThelp@epa.gov with any questions or feedback.
Updated Version of Consequence Analysis Software Tool Now Available
An updated version of the Water Health and Economic Analysis Tool (WHEAT), which now estimates consequences for both drinking water and wastewater utilities, is now available. Developed in collaboration with water sector partners, the release of WHEAT 2.0 will provide utilities of all sizes with the capability to assess, plan for, and better respond to man-made threats and natural disasters. WHEAT is an intuitive, generalized, desktop software tool that assists utility owners and operators in quantifying public health impacts, utility financial costs and regional economic impacts of an accidental or adverse event. WHEAT can now generate consequence results for both wastewater utilities and drinking water utilities based on two scenarios: 1) release of a hazardous gas and 2) loss of operating assets. WHEAT is available for download: http://water.epa.gov/infrastructure/watersecurity/techtools/wheat.cfm. A series of WHEAT training webinars are being offered, click on the "training" tab to register. Contact WHEATHELP@epa.gov for more information.
EPA Releases Coastal Wetland Review Reports
EPA is releasing four Coastal Wetland Review reports containing the results of meetings with stakeholders in coastal watersheds throughout the Atlantic and Gulf coasts. EPA convened these meetings to better understand regional stressors on wetlands in coastal watersheds, local protection strategies, and key gaps that, if addressed, could help reverse the trend of wetland loss. This work is part of an interagency effort which includes EPA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and other federal agencies to reduce and reverse coastal wetlands loss as follow-up to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/NOAA report, Status and Trends of Wetlands in the Coastal Watersheds of the Eastern United States, which identified an average rate of loss for wetlands in coastal watersheds of 59,000 acres per year. The reports and broader information about coastal wetlands and the coastal wetlands initiative can be found at http://water.epa.gov/type/wetlands/cwt.cfm.
Climate Ready Estuaries Releases 2012 Progress Report and Related Publications
EPA has released its Climate Ready Estuaries 2012 Progress Report, Lessons Learned from the Climate Ready Estuaries Program: New England Climate Ready Estuaries, and Climate Change Risk Management: CRE Adaptation Projects and the Risk Management Process. The progress report describes program accomplishments and the new National Estuary Program projects started during 2012, with 2008-2011 project information to show how climate change adaptation will help to meet clean water goals. The lessons learned document highlights the results and "lessons learned" from the nine Climate Ready Estuaries projects in New England while the risk management publication examines how Climate Ready Estuary projects illustrate and support using the risk management paradigm for climate change adaptation. Click here for the materials and more information.
Success Spotlight: Buttahatchee River, Mississippi
EPA's Clean Water Act Section (CWA) 319 Program provides funding for restoration of nonpoint source-impaired water bodies. This week's success spotlight shines on Buttahatchee River, Mississippi. Animal waste from livestock and wildlife, as well as failing septic systems, contributed to the increased presence of fecal coliform bacteria in the river. As a result, the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality placed a 29-mile segment of the Buttahatchee River on its list of impaired waters in 1998. Using CWA section 319 and matching funds from partnering agencies, project partners installed 59 best management practices on 4,702 acres within the watershed, including pasture and hay land planting, stabilization of heavy-use areas, prescribed grazing, nutrient management practices, livestock exclusion fencing and water trough installation . Bacteria levels declined and now meet water quality standards, prompting Mississippi to remove the segment from its list of impaired waters in 2012. Click here for more information.
Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Program
ETV Verified Technologies
The ETV Program has verified the performance of 465 innovative environmental technologies that can be used to monitor, prevent, control, and clean up pollution. For a full list of ETV verifications, visit http://www.epa.gov/etv/verifiedtechnologies.html.
ETV centers issue periodic solicitations for vendors and collaborators interested in verification. For a list of active ETV vendor solicitations, please visit www.epa.gov/etv/vendorswanted.html, or contact the appropriate ETV center (see www.epa.gov/etv/contacts.html).
For more information on the ETV, visit www.epa.gov/etv.
Other EPA News
EPA Resolves Violations With Four Guam Companies For Hazardous Materials Reporting Failures
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency resolved violations with four Guam companies for their failure to report to emergency planners the amount of diesel fuel and other hazardous chemicals stored at their facilities, a violation of the federal Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act (EPCRA).
Each of the four companies paid $2,000 each and corrected their violations by submitting reports to Guam EPA listing the quantities of hazardous chemicals stored pursuant to the Act's Section 312 Tier II reporting requirements. The companies are:
- Goodwind Development Corp. (Dededo, Guam)
- Guam Waterworks Authority (for the Ugum Surface Water Treatment Plant)
- Pepsi Cola Bottling Co. of Guam (Tamuning, Guam)
- The Westin Resort of Guam (Tumon, Guam)
EPCRA allows EPA to impose significantly higher penalties for failure to make required submissions of Tier II reports, and future violators in Guam could face higher penalties than the four announced. Click here for the news release.
EPA Details Results Of $100M Federal Effort To Clean Up Navajo Uranium Contamination
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced progress on a coordinated five-year federal investment of more than $100 million to address health risks posed by pervasive uranium contamination on the Navajo Nation. EPA joined five other federal agencies in releasing a report today outlining the results of their Five-Year Plan. Since 2008, EPA has spent more than $50 million to clean up mines, provide safe drinking water, and demolish and replace contaminated homes. In addition to federal funds, EPA has used the Superfund law to compel responsible parties to perform an additional $17 million in mine investigations and cleanups. Click here for the news release.
EPA Announces Settlements With Company For Multiple Violations Of Chemical Reporting And Pesticide Laws
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it reached settlements with two subsidiaries of the Kemira Group for violations of chemical and pesticide laws.
The settlement with Kemira Chemicals resolves alleged violations of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, including the sale and distribution of an unregistered pesticide, the sale and distribution of misbranded pesticides, and pesticide production reporting violations. The sale and distribution of unregistered or misbranded pesticides can cause serious illness in humans and be harmful to the environment. Under the terms of the agreement, Kemira Chemicals has corrected the alleged violations and will pay a civil penalty of $301,600.
EPA also reached an agreement with Kemira Water Solutions after an EPA inspection identified 27 violations of the Toxic Substance Control Act’s Inventory Update Reporting (IUR) rule for the 2006 reporting period. The IUR rule requires manufacturers and importers of certain chemical substances to report the production volume and location of each facility producing these chemical substances. The information collected is used to support risk screening and assessment and makes up the most comprehensive source of basic screening-level, exposure-related information on chemicals available to EPA. Kemira Water Solutions has since submitted the required information to EPA and will pay a civil penalty of $503,110.
Kemira Chemicals, Inc. and Kemira Water Solutions, Inc. are both subsidiaries of Kemira Group, a global chemical company with U.S. headquarters in Atlanta, Ga.
More information about the settlement: http://www.epa.gov/enforcement/waste/cases/kemiragroup.html
EPA’s 2011 Toxics Release Inventory Shows Air Pollutants Continue To Decline
Total toxic air releases in 2011 declined 8 percent from 2010, mostly because of decreases in hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions, even while total releases of toxic chemicals increased for the second year in a row, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) annual Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) report published today.
The annual TRI provides citizens with vital information about their communities. The TRI program collects information on certain toxic chemical releases to the air, water and land, as well as information on waste management and pollution prevention activities by facilities across the country. TRI data are submitted annually to EPA, states and tribes by facilities in industry sectors such as manufacturing, metal mining, electric utilities, and commercial hazardous waste facilities. Click here for the news release.
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