SFPUC passes new emergency outdoor irrigation restrictions
The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) passed new emergency outdoor irrigation restrictions for all of its retail customers, which feature a mandate to reduce potable water use by 10 percent for outdoor irrigation of ornamental landscape and turf. The new regulations began in mid-September and will last through June 30, 2015; only water customers with metered irrigation accounts will be issued a usage allocation based on a 10 percent reduction of their 2013 usage. Commissioners considered an excess use charge of two times the billing rate for every unit in excess of a customer’s allocation, and SFPUC is asking all of its retail customers to comply. An education-first plan to reduce wasteful outdoor water use by prohibiting certain water-wasting activities will also be implemented.
Water providers sign a water conservation agreement to conserve Colorado River
A milestone water conservation agreement addressing a long-term imbalance on the Colorado River triggered by years of drought conditions was signed by the federal government and municipal water providers in Colorado, Arizona, Nevada and California. The agreement creates the Colorado River System Conservation program, providing $11 million for pilot conservation programs in 2015 and 2016. Successful programs may be expanded or extended to offer even more protection for the Colorado River system. The pilot programs will reduce water demand in a range of areas including municipal, industrial and agricultural uses, and water conserved within the project will stay in the Colorado River, benefiting the health of the river system and helping to improve the diminishing reservoir levels.
The ANSI/NGWA-01-14 Water Well Construction Standard now accessible
The ANSI/NGWA-01-14 Water Well Construction Standard is available in the National Ground Water Association’s (NGWA) online bookstore. NGWA first initiated efforts to become an American National Standards Institute-accredited standards developer eight years ago, and the newly accessible ANSI/NGWA-01-14 places a level of expectations for water well system professionals to meet for monitoring, agricultural, industrial, residential and public supply water wells. The standard also aims to contribute to public health and safety, resource protection and to serve as an outcomes focus for NGWA’s voluntary water well system professional certification program. Topics covered in the standard include, but are not limited to: Data recording, disinfection with chlorine, well development, water sampling and analysis and well site selection.
California announces new reporting requirement for water production and consumption
California announced a new reporting requirement for water production and consumption to address reduced water supplies made worse by ongoing drought conditions. According to the State Water Resources Control Board, the requirement is meant to “ensure that urban water suppliers implement drought response plans to limit outdoor irrigation and other wasteful water practices.” As of August 2014, suppliers must also provide a “monitoring report” by the 15th of every month, detailing the quantity of potable water purchased or produced, as well as the number of customers served; additional “residential per capita consumption” reports will be mandated starting on Oct. 15. IDModeling Inc. will provide automated production reports available through Sedaru, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution, to water utilities and suppliers to address the reporting requirement.
States miss opportunities to improve water system infrastructure
The EPA Office of Inspector General (OIC) reports that some states are not capitalizing on the use of Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (DWSRF), leading to “missed opportunities” to improve water system infrastructure. An investigation of DWSRF use in five states revealed that “unliquidated balances” surpass the EPA goal of keeping those balances below 13 percent of the cumulative federal capitalization grants awarded. The OIG also discovered that the states were not sufficiently projecting the DWSRF resources that would be available in the future, to enable them to anticipate the amount of projects needed to be ready for loan execution in a given year. More than $230 million of capitalization grant funds remained idle as a result, and the OIG recommended that EPA require states with unliquidated obligations exceeding 13 percent cutoff goal, to project future cash flows, guaranteeing funds are utilized resourcefully.
Multinational company agrees to settle alleged Clean Water Act violations
Cargill Incorporated agreed to settle alleged Clean Water Act (CWA) violations at two large oil storage facilities located in Blair, Neb., and Eddyville, Iowa. Through the settlement with EPA Region 7, the corporation, headquartered in Minnetonka, Minn., will pay the U.S. a civil penalty of $187,500. Each of Cargill’s two facilities produces and stores more than one million gallons of oil and combined have a total estimated storage capacity of more than seven million gallons. The CWA requires facilities that store large quantities of oil to develop a Facility Response Plan (FRP), outlining procedures for addressing “worst-case” discharges of oil.
IWEA will host 36th Annual Conference and Exposition
The Illinois Water Environment Association (IWEA) announced it will host its 36th Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition Feb. 23-25, 2015, at the iHotel located in Champaign, Illinois. The theme for this year’s conference is, “Life is Good Water…Renew for the Future,” and exhibitor registration is now available, with an early-bird discount for those who register by Oct. 31. The conference will include: High quality technical tracks and workshops, nationally recognized keynote speakers, enhanced young professionals program, exhibits from industry leading manufacturers and service providers, plant tours, operations challenge and networking opportunities.
U.S. Water Alliance issues report on reducing nutrient pollution in Mississippi River Basin
The U.S. Water Alliance released a report, “Coming Together to Protect Mississippi River Watersheds: Agriculture and Water Sector Collaboration for Nutrient Progress,” on common ground and innovative strategies between agriculture and water and wastewater utilities to reduce nutrient pollution in the Mississippi River Basin. The report features discussions and recommendations of agriculture, wastewater and drinking water leaders with participation from environmental, business, academic and scientific, federal, state and local agency interests. The Mississippi River Nutrient Dialogues participants worked together to identify opportunities for targeted, localized solutions based on new partnerships.
WQA seeks new partner laboratory
The Water Quality Association (WQA) announced that it is seeking a new partner laboratory to test plastic pipe, fittings and assemblies. Jana Laboratories Inc. (Jana), WQA’s former partner, will no longer offer product testing services after its laboratory assets were purchased by another organization, therefore voiding the joint partnership agreement formed in October 2013. The formal agreement provided WQA’s Gold Seal Product Certification division the ability to test water distribution products for conformance to NSF/ANSI Standard 14: Plastic Piping System Components and Related Materials.
Keith Pennison has joined Aquion Inc.’s commercial division as an account executive. Pennison will focus primarily on helping to develop business for Aquion’s ProSystems Group while assisting Clearwater Tech, and will report to Aquion Executive Vice President, Business Development, Eddie Garman. Over the last 13 years, Pennison worked for Pentair, receiving several promotions and most recently, serving as a global account manager, providing technical support for national accounts including the Yum! Brands, 7-Eleven, Subway and Burger King stores.
Lavatec Laundry Technology Inc. (LLT) welcomed Lanier Bone as the new project and sales support engineer. He will be based at the company’s corporate office in Beacon Falls, Conn., and will report to LLT President Mark Thrasher. Bone brings 17 years of industrial laundry services experience as a sales engineer and general manager, and his expertise with layout and design will play an important role in his new position with LLT.
Koch Membrane Systems (KMS) appointed M. Hatem Bouattour as an independent sales representative. Bouattour will assist KMS with the marketing and sales of its water and wastewater products for the region, including Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria, and will provide a French-speaking liaison between KMS and end-users and engineers within that part of the world. He has many years of experience in the North Africa region working with commercial and industrial organizations, and is an environmental and water specialist with knowledge and experience in water management and governance.