Though the current U.S. EPA administration is boasting about its action to clean up the nation’s Superfund sites, it appears that it has not done as much as implied.
With cuts being made to the budget of the federal EPA, individual states are having to step up and take matters of protecting drinking and source water into their own hands. Last year, none were more forceful with this change than Ohio.
As the U.S. EPA is reshaped under President Trump, some are concerned over what has been reported as an “exodus” of employees from the agency.
One of the nation’s most high-profile water contamination cases has drawn federal interest, as the U.S. EPA joined an investigation into perfluorinated compound (PFC) pollution in Michigan.
Wastewater pros are using diet soda to track down pollution.
As perflourinated compound (PFC) contamination continues to raise concerns all over the nation, one Michigan community has decided to take action to combat it.
Automated metering systems (AMSs) or “smart meters” can provide valuable data for electric and water utilities. Data analytics can be used to improve customer service, boost conservation, monitor the system, and even forecast demand. An ultimate goal might be to eventually monitor everything from streetlight intensity to fire hydrants.
Located in north-central Montana, the City of Havre is located in a geography that sees summer temperatures over 100°F (38°C) and winter temperatures that can plunge as low as -40°F (-40°C) accompanied by sustained arctic winds of over 20 mph. These dramatic swings in temperature can wreak havoc on disinfectant levels in the summer by creating a “stratified” tank environment conducive to pathogen growth and allow for ice formation in the tank during the winter. Ice formation can lead to tank coating and appurtenance damage as large chunks of ice can suddenly drop from a higher tank elevation and create catastrophic tank damage. The City of Havre realized that adding simple mechanical mixing to their newly refurbished 3.5 MG West Water Tank would solve both the potential summer water quality and winter asset protection issues. Read the full case study to learn more.
One of the most commonly used measurements in the water and wastewater industry is pH. A measurement of how acid or alkaline a substance is, a pH reading can instantaneously indicate a problem with the water. Another common and useful measurement is oxidation-reduction potential (ORP). Treatment facilities use ORP sensors to optimize disinfection and biological nutrient removal processes.
Utilities have relied on numerous instruments for process control and monitoring for many years. But in today’s world, instrumentation is more crucial than ever. Most treatment facilities, pump stations, and other system components are automated to some extent. Instrument failure or inaccuracy may result in serious public health or environmental consequences. Resilient instruments can power through adversity and keep utilities running smoothly.
Accurate flow measurement is critical for process control and regulatory compliance. Flow meters are essential instruments for water and wastewater facilities, installed at multiple locations throughout entire systems. For the most part, these are permanent installations. However, portable flow instruments prove beneficial in certain situations.
Water has never been more in demand, and innovative approaches to improving water security have never been more imperative. As our global population grows exponentially, cities and towns expand to accommodate new inhabitants, providing the resources and services they need. Rapid agricultural and industrial development continues apace.
Flanders pioneers the internet of Water, a unique intelligent water management system based on a network of connected sensors, that enables a permanent and real time follow-up of water quality and water quantity. This internet of Water will enable Flanders to tackle the growing threat of water inconvenience, water scarcity and water pollution.
Water utilities rely on accurate and dependable flow measurement for critical process controls. Regulatory agencies also require flow monitoring and reporting, with specific accuracy limits.
Utility managers and operators rely on flow meters to provide critical information for process monitoring and control. They require and fully expect the flow data to be accurate and reproducible.
A real-world, industrial application of remote process monitoring proves that a little technology can go a long way in terms of cost savings and process improvement.
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PFC contamination is the number one drinking water issue today. So how are local and federal leaders working to put an end to it?
Last year was full of twists and turns for the drinking water and wastewater treatment industries. What can 2017’s biggest stories tell us about what’s to come this year?
Though some preliminary regulations have taken place to curb the presence of microplastics in the environment, more research is needed to determine what role wastewater treatment plants can and will play in solving the problem for good.
With water treatment plant operators around the country relying on paper and pen to record critical quality data, there is an opportunity to make life easier online.
As excess nutrients continue to pollute source water, bringing dead zones and toxic chemicals, it’s time for the disparate agencies that can make a difference to band together.
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection has compiled a report on the world’s leading stormwater management solutions and challenges. Reviewing its contents can be an opportunity for communities to build stormwater strength together.
Cities all over the country have been prioritizing clean water through a variety of different programs and the City of Brotherly Love is among the ranks.
Over the past 10 years, DC Water has become the harbinger of the modern water utility. It’s often unconventional approach to tackling age-old problems usually elicits one of two responses from other utility professionals. The first response is one of resignation — if only I had the budget that size permits, I’d be able to do similar things. And the second is one of awe — there’s no way I have the amount of gumption to convince regulators or customers that I have a better way.
It may seem farfetched, but the reality is that many Americans don’t have regular access to clean drinking water.
Affordability and maintainability are two of the greatest challenges small municipalities face when constructing and managing sewer infrastructure. With these challenges in mind, it’s important for small cities to choose wisely when investing in a wastewater system that needs to last for 30-60 years.
California is home to some of the world’s most creative minds, top universities, productive farmland, groundbreaking industries — and one of the most epic droughts. The state has endured five years of drained reservoirs and groundwater reserves tapped so aggressively that the land subsidence caused by pumping has been literally seen from space. This indicates in no uncertain terms that it’s time to get all hands on deck. Private companies, universities, irrigation and drainage districts, municipalities — it’s time to pull together into public-private partnerships to address water challenges that face California and so many other regions of the world.
More than 20 years ago I wrote a Master’s Thesis about software tools that could be put together with EPA SWMM to create a toolbox for very long term continuous simulation for stormwater and watershed simulations. I was inspired at the time by Dr. William James who was my advisor for that research.
Now that you have returned to the role of private citizen — though, admittedly you are a private citizen with millions of eyes focused on you — I want to encourage you to continue your great work promoting the health of our nation’s children. Your emphasis on exercise and nutrition, jobs and support for veterans, and education have touched millions of Americans of all ages and all backgrounds. Now it’s time to bring in the most common denominator and the first step toward good health — access to clean water.
It’s no secret that municipalities across the country are facing budget constraints.
Salvator Mundi sold for nearly half a billion dollars. Walter Isaacson’s latest biography is a breakaway hit. Management guru Michael Gelb’s book accessing the thought techniques of history’s most accomplished Renaissance Man — in every literal and figurative sense of the word — is still a bestseller. Almost 500 years after his death, Leonardo da Vinci is still a superstar.
One of the great turnaround stories in the history of our nation’s water bodies is that of the Chesapeake Bay. Since 1976 when the Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) first undertook a comprehensive study of the Bay, efforts to address excessive nitrogen and phosphorous degradation of water quality have steadily improved the Bay’s complex ecosystem.
A Request for Startups post on January 3rd on the Y Combinator Blog caught my eye. The blogger talked about the need to prepare for things to get worse with regard to climate change, and called for applications for funding from those working on new technologies that could inexpensively produce clean water.
District Sales Engineer Andy Singer has spent enough time troubleshooting problems in the field that not much surprises him anymore. When it comes to dry barrel fire hydrants, though, he still gets a chuckle out of some of his more outrageous experiences. Here is his educational and entertaining take on the care and maintenance of fire hydrants, and ways to maximize a utility’s return on what potentially can be a 50+-year infrastructure investment.
New York City treats 1.3 billion gallons of wastewater a day across its 14 wastewater treatment plants. The city has seen a precipitous drop in fecal coliforms, with the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) reporting that fecal coliforms per 100 mL of water has fallen from 1,000 in 1972 when the Clean Water Act was passed to closer to 10 as of 2009.
This blog is a summary of a presentation I gave at the Water Quality Association’s annual convention in Orlando.
Straight pipes, failed drainfields, polluted lakes, out-of-compliance discharge permits, and several other indicators of wastewater management issues are widespread throughout Iowa’s rural communities. By Tyler Molatore, Orenco Systems®, Inc.
Conversation at the 2016 SESWA Stormwater BMPs, LID and Green Infrastructure Seminar in Atlanta GA that I attended recently touched upon the idea of computers taking our jobs and ‘Engineering Bots’. This has of course happened in other industries, but I didn’t anticipate it happening in the stormwater planning, design and management world.
Talk about making waves. Cryptocurrency — digital “tokens” or “coins” rooted in computer code and valued for the very fact that they are disconnected from governments and banks — have experienced spectacular rises and falls in recent months. The crypto-economy is already worth hundreds of billions of dollars (REAL dollars!), and it’s anyone’s guess how fast it will grow after that.
Those who are philanthropically-minded need look no further for a cause than that of water. After all, this is a fundamental aspect of human existence and one that is shockingly scarce in some parts of the world.