New Report on Importance of Water Infrastructure Funding
The American Society Civil Engineers and the US Water Alliance released a report entitled The Economic Benefits of Investing in Water Infrastructure: How a Failure to Act Would Affect the US Economic Recovery this week, which outlines the importance of infrastructure funding to economic growth. This report details the costs to the US economy if current investment trends in water infrastructure and warns that unless federal investment in the sector increases significantly over the next 20 years, the nation risks a $2.9 trillion decline in the gross domestic product (GDP) as well as billions of dollars of increased healthcare costs. The analysis also found that:
- The nation’s water infrastructure is aging and deteriorating.
- The nation is chronically underinvesting in water infrastructure.
- Federal investment is lagging, placing added pressure on local and state governments.
- New challenges and a growing demand are shaping infrastructure needs.
According to the report, the US faces a cumulative investment gap over the next 20 years for capital spending on water infrastructure of $2.2 trillion, and a cumulative operations and maintenance shortfall of $287 billion, the report says. The Report also highlights the decrease in the federal government’s share of capital investment, down from from 31 percent in 1977 to 4 percent in 2017. Four key findings emerged:
- Service disruptions would cost water-reliant businesses $250 billion by 2039.
- Underinvestment would lead to a cumulative $2.9 trillion decline in the gross domestic product by 2039.
- Costs incurred by US households due to water and wastewater failures would be seven times higher in 20 years than they are today.
- Failing water infrastructure would result in $7.7 billion in cumulative healthcare costs to households over the next 20 years.
Finally, the Report points to the economic benefits of increased investment over the next 20 years would result in a $4.5 trillion increase in GDP, the creation of 800,000 jobs, an increase in disposable income by over $2,000 per household, and the US trade balance would dramatically improve making exports more competitive.
EPA/State/Tribal Webinar Series on Water Quality Certification Rule Changes
The EPA is hosting a three-part webinar series for states and tribes to learn about the final rule and implementation considerations. Please note that this webinar series is open to states and tribes only. Webinar presentations will be recorded and posted on EPA’s CWA 401 website at here, and webinars will include time for Q&A.
Registration for the webinar series is available here, or you can register for individual webinars using the links below. If you have any questions about the webinar series, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
State and Tribal Webinar 2
Date: September 1, 2020, 1:30-3:00 PM Eastern Time
Registration: Click here
This webinar focuses on the scope of analysis for certification decisions and the required elements of certification decision documents.
State and Tribal Webinar 3
Date: September 9, 2020, 3:30-5:00 PM Eastern Time
Registration: Click here
This webinar focuses on the neighboring jurisdiction notification and coordination process under CWA section 401(a)(2), as well as enforcement of certification conditions and modifications to certifications.
EPA Requesting Applications for GLRI Grant to Monitor Great Lakes Coastal Wetlands
EPA is seeking applications to monitor ecological conditions in the coastal wetlands of the Great Lakes. Approximately $10 million of Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) funding will be made available to one applicant to implement the Great Lakes Coastal Wetland Monitoring Program for five years.
The Great Lakes Coastal Wetland Monitoring Program is a collaboration of federal agencies, states, and US and Canadian academic partners in the Great Lakes. Under the Program, major coastal wetlands throughout the Great Lakes basin are sampled for bird, amphibian, fish, macroinvertebrate and plant communities, as well as for water quality. The data helps gauge the health of Great Lakes coastal wetlands and provides information on trends and habitat conditions. Since the program began in 2010, over 1,000 coastal wetland sites have been visited, resulting in more than 150,000 hectares of coastal wetland habitat monitored.
EPA is seeking applications to continue the monitoring of biological communities and water quality in coastal wetlands across the Great Lakes. The agency expects to provide funding for one cooperative agreement of approximately $10 million over a five-year period.
Qualified non-federal entities eligible to apply for grants include non-federal governmental entities, nonprofit organizations, and institutions. This includes state agencies; any agency or instrumentality of local government; interstate agencies; federally recognized tribes and tribal organizations; colleges and universities; non-profit organizations; and other public or non-profit private agencies, institutions, and organizations.
The deadline for applications is Oct. 26, 2020. For more information, visit EPA’s request for applications.
EPA, DOD, State Partners Launch Technical Challenge Seeking Innovative Ways to Destroy PFAS in AFFF
EPA is offering up to $50,000 for the best design concept(s), with the added potential opportunity for field testing of the winning design concept(s) in partnership with EPA and DOD’s Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP). The challenge is now open and closes on November 23, 2020. Winners are expected to be announced in early 2021.
More information is available on EPA’s web page.
EPA Office of Research and Development will host an informational webinar on September 16, 2020 at 2:00 PM Eastern Time. Register here for the informational webinar.
USGS Seeks Stakeholder Input on Water Resources Mission Area Web Applications
The US Geological Survey (USGS), a Source Water Collaborative member, is seeking stakeholder input on their Water Resources Mission Area Web Applications. USGS is requesting input on the use of, and satisfaction with, their water web-based tools and applications through a short survey. Your input will allow USGS to better understand the value current applications provide and more importantly, help guide the development of future web-based applications.
Depending on the number of applications you use, the survey should take about six minutes to complete. The survey can be accessed at this link: Use & Value of USGS Water Web-based Applications Survey
Participation in the survey is voluntary and responses will be kept confidential and anonymous, no personally identifiable information will be collected unless you choose to provide contact information so that they may follow up with you.
Participation would be greatly appreciated and USGS welcomes to share this if you know of others that use USGS Water web-applications. The deadline to participate is September 25, 2020.
Thank you very much for your time and your valuable input. If you have any questions or comments, please contact Nicole Herman-Mercer at email@example.com.
2020 Water Reuse Regulator Summit – September 3, 10, 17, and 24
This virtual event, for state regulators only, will take place as a series of interactive discussions held each Thursday in September in conjunction with the WateReuse Association’s 35th Annual Symposium. The Summit is designed for state regulators to share, learn, and workshop a range of water reuse issues and related initiatives. The State Summit on Water Reuse is hosted by ACWA, ASDWA, ASTHO, ECOS, and GWPC, in collaboration with EPA and the WateReuse Association (WRA). If you have any questions about this meeting contact Jake Adler directly.
2020 National CAFO Roundtable – September 22-24
This year, the 2020 National CAFO Roundtable will be held virtually in the afternoons of September 22 – September 24 from 12:30-5:00 PM Eastern Time. ACWA invites states and interstates to share this meeting information with other state agencies. A draft agenda and meeting registration link are available on ACWA’s website. This meeting is not open to the public, but there will be several non-regulatory guests invited to present. To ensure the meeting is as accessible as possible, there will be no registration fee. If you have any questions about this meeting visit the website or contact Sean Rolland directly.
ACWA Modeling 101 Webinar Series – October 19-20
Due to the postponement of the 2020 Modeling Workshop, ACWA will be holding a 2-day Modeling 101 webinar series, starting Monday, October 19, 2020. This series is designed as an introductory course for those new to modeling or interested in a refresher. This series will cover a variety of topics, including: modeling principles, model selection, data needs, how to get data, and overviews of the different model types. Sessions will take place through GoToWebinar, and registration links will be posted at a later date. If you have any questions about this meeting contact Jasper Hobbs directly.
2020 Virtual Nutrients Permitting Workshop – October 26-29
ACWA’s next Nutrients Permitting Workshop, the fifth in a series of seven, will be held virtually. Sessions will take place October 26-29, 2o2o from 1:00-5:00 PM Eastern Time. This workshop will focus on nutrients permitting flexibilities such as water quality trading and other market-based methods, integrated planning, and more. Sessions will take place through GoToWebinar, and a draft agenda and registration links will be posted soon. You can find more information on the workshop event page as it is made available. If you have any questions about this meeting visit ACWA’s website or contact Jasper Hobbs directly.
Environmental Engineer / Physical Scientist – EPA
EPA’s Office of Water is seeking an Environmental Engineer/Physical Scientist. Responsibilities include:
- Leading technical policy evaluation; interpreting technical cost and engineering/scientific data, identifying and evaluating trends or problems, and developing and implementing solutions.
- Planning, developing, reviewing, evaluating, communicating, and directly participating in the establishment and implementation of the Water Reuse Action Plan (WRAP) projects.
- Representing the Office of Water (OW) as a national engineer/scientific/technical expert at state, regional and national and international forums with states, industry, agriculture and water industry associations as a recognized expert on technology, science and policy issues.
- Serving as the technical and science expert for EPA of the range of potential source waters available for the full spectrum of reuse.
Read more and apply by September 8, 2020 here.
Best Management Practices for POTW Compliance: Critical Elements of Successful Wastewater Treatment- Part 2, (Creating and implementing effective SOPs, Managing your WWTP to promote compliance, finding technical assistance programs and resources)
DATE/TIME: Tuesday, September 15, 2020, 1:00pm – 2:30 PM Eastern Time
REGISTRATION: Free On-line Registration! Look for individual webinar flyers.
PURPOSE: Help attendees understand the root causes of common problems faced by wastewater treatment system operators and providing suggestions and resources to help them fine-tune their operations and, if needed, fix their noncompliance problems.
INTENDED AUDIENCE: Plant operators, municipal leaders, technical assistance providers and compliance inspection staff from federal, state, tribal and local governments.
PRESENTERS: Jake Albright PG Environmental, Heather Himmelberger PE, Director Southwest Environmental Finance Center
QUESTIONS: Peter Bahor, Water Branch, Office of Compliance, US EPA firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hold the Date: Montana Stormwater Conference
Resilience: Building Sustainable Communities
The 2021 Storm Water Conference seeks to enable resilience in our local communities and across the watersheds we call home. We will bring professionals together to facilitate discussions and create networking opportunities to help build strong communities; rehabilitate blighted areas; learn ways to provide better services to those in our communities we serve; while continuing to find innovative ways to better protect water quality.
Attendees will learn about storm water program planning and management, watershed management and restoration, water quality monitoring, design/build best practices, new technologies, and hear stories of success. Special emphasis will be given to sustainability topics such as asset management, land-use planning, green infrastructure, low impact development, funding mechanisms, regulatory updates, and community engagement. Special training sessions will expand opportunities for attendees to Learn, Network, and Participate!
To make this successful, we need storm water professionals to take part. Share your experiences, success stories, lessons learned and demonstrated collaboration on projects. Topics range from stream and watershed health to climate change and resilience. Submit an Abstract!