Of the issues facing utilities, financing — or lack thereof — ranks at or near the top of most lists. During this Water Talk, Reese Tisdale, President of Bluefield Research, discusses the rise in operating expenses (OPEX) over the past 10 years, explains the reasons and repercussions, and forecasts where costs will go from here.
Jeff Garner, Senior Vice President with MWH Constructors, covers a lot of area in this Water Talk interview, which focuses on alternative project delivery models (particularly the construction manager at-risk (CMAR) approach), the water-energy-food nexus, and the thermal hydrolysis process (THP) for on-site energy generation.
The adoption of water reuse can be unavoidable due to water scarcity, but it may also be a choice. And when it comes to choices, cost is usually a deciding factor. Gary Hunter, Senior Wastewater Process Engineer with Black & Veatch, helps make sense of the dollars required for recycled water schemes in this Water Talk interview.
James Schlaman, Director of Water Resources at Black & Veatch, explains what community-based public-private partnerships (CBP3s) are (and what they aren't), how they work, and what makes them attractive — particularly for stormwater management improvements.
Prioritizing and funding pressing infrastructure needs can be challenging for water treatment and wastewater treatment plants (WTPs/WWTPs) of any size. The problems are particularly stressful for smaller utilities where a thin layer of upper management staff wears an inordinate number of hats. The good news is that funding assistance does exist — if you know where to look for it and take the right steps to apply for it.
Five years ago, the city of Detroit, MI, filed the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history at an estimated $18 to 20B. At the time, there was a lot of speculation in the water market as to how the city would continue to serve its citizens with viable water and sanitary sewer services. Ultimately Detroit reached a deal with neighboring Oakland, Wayne, and Macomb counties to create the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA), a new regional water and sewer authority. Spring forward to today and despite Detroit’s population continuing to dwindle, it’s water and sewer provision under the GLWA has recovered significantly.
Over the past two decades, the trend from traditional design-bid-build (DBB) construction project-delivery practices to design-build (DB) practices has grown. Is that merely a cyclical trend or a step change that is destined to be a fixture for a long time to come?
Despite my fascination with the adage, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting a different result,” I still occasionally find myself — a creature of habit — falling into a pattern of repetitive unsuccessful behavior.
From university buildings to bridge replacements, this year’s 2018 Design-Build Project/Team Award winners are the best design-build projects in the nation and demonstrate how Design-Build Done Right continues to deliver project innovation and savings to communities from coast to coast.
Burns & McDonnell announced David Kinchen has joined its team in Texas to expand the firm's water services in the region. In this role, Kinchen will grow the team of engineering, construction and design professionals to deliver water and wastewater solutions for municipalities, utilities and industrial clients.
The Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA) has announced the winners of its 2018 National Design-Build Project/Team Awards competition.
Among the notable defeats on election day was a proposed $9 billion water bond in California.
The problem with smart cities is no one wants to buy them. Because no one knows how to sell them. The technology is proven, but the commercial models are only just emerging.
Plans are in place for New Jersey American Water customers to be paid back for what amounted to a loan to the state’s biggest water utility.
New research shows that America’s design-build projects continue to deliver faster, and with greater reliability in cost and schedule performance, than other delivery methods.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is inviting 39 projects in 16 states and D.C. to apply for Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loans.
On Nov. 1, leaders from El Paso Water, Project Amistad and the City of El Paso announced a new customer assistance program called AguaCares. The program officially launches Jan. 2 and will focus on helping elderly, low-income customers who struggle to pay their water and wastewater bills.
The National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) strongly supports the Low-Income Water Customer Assistance Programs Act (S.3564), officially unveiled recently by Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD).
As water and wastewater treatment plant (WTP/WWTP) processes and control systems become more sophisticated, maximizing operator effectiveness becomes more complex as well. A well-planned alarm and control strategy can make a significant difference between valuable decision-making information and confusing, disjointed, data points. This article highlights key strategies for foreseeing problems in advance, fixing them faster, and having a higher success rate by maximizing operator effectiveness.
In water plant operations, there’s no such thing as simply maintaining the status quo. Any utility that is not moving forward is falling behind. Whether a water treatment or wastewater treatment plant (WTP/WWTP) chooses to rely on in-house resources or outside specialists, here are some lifecycle management approaches they can use to upgrade control capabilities without compromising performance or return on investment.
A Q&A with Berkeley Lab hydrological science expert Bhavna Arora, who explains how unseasonably warm weather and drought can affect water quality
While the laws of physics and chemistry have not changed, the ways that water and wastewater treatment plants (WTPs/WWTPs) are being forced to deal with them certainly have — e.g., disinfection byproducts (DBPs), tighter turbidity standards, harmful algal blooms, and PFAS challenges. Even when plant throughput stays the same, the demands on plant personnel continue to increase. Here’s how evolving toward better workforce management processes can help.
The history of commercial online transactions is riddled with horror stories about data security breaches. Think Equifax, Target, Yahoo, Uber, Sony PlayStation … the list goes on. How can a utility maximize the benefits advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) offers for more efficient data collection and management, without having to worry about seeing its name on the front page of tomorrow’s newspaper?
By now, most of the utilities managing the 80 percent of U.S. water meters not yet capitalizing on advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) have heard about the advantages offered by the 20 percent of utilities that are. Unfortunately, utilities large and small still cite a variety of reasons delaying their step up to AMI productivity — including smart meter installation costs, lack of in-house expertise, and capital budgets for IT support.