Agencies Extend WOTUS Stakeholder Nomination Period
On October 13, 2021, EPA and the Army (the agencies) announced a process for stakeholders to nominate a slate of participants to potentially be selected as one of ten geographically focused roundtables. These regional roundtables will be hosted by EPA and the Army and will enable stakeholders with a range of perspectives to discuss their implementation experiences with “waters of the United States” (WOTUS), including challenges and opportunities to provide greater clarity within their geographic areas. In response to robust interest in these regional roundtables, the agencies have extended the deadline for submissions to Wednesday, December 1, 2021. A Federal Register Notice providing this extension and additional clarifications is available at here.
Nominations and Meetings of the EPA Board of Scientific Counselors
EPA is seeking nominations for experts to serve on the Board of Scientific Counselors (BOSC), a federal advisory committee to EPA’s Office of Research and Development (ORD). Nominations are now open and will close November 12, 2021. Individuals and organizations can nominate themselves or others here.
EPA values and welcomes diversity and encourages all eligible applicants to apply.
Members of the BOSC constitute a distinguished body of non-EPA scientists, engineers, and economists who are experts in their respective fields. EPA will consider nominees from industry, business, public and private research institutes or organizations, academia, government (federal, state, local, and tribal) and non-government organizations, and other relevant interest areas. Members are appointed by the EPA Administrator to serve as Special Government Employees and provide independent expert advice to the agency for a term of up to six years.
For more information on the type of expertise sought and selection criteria, please view the Federal Register notice.
Meeting: BOSC Safe and Sustainable Water Resources Subcommittee
EPA ORD is giving notice of a series of virtual meetings of the BOSC Safe and Sustainable Water Resources (SSWR) Subcommittee to discuss the SSWR research program on nutrients and harmful algal blooms. Instructions on how to connect to the videoconference will be provided upon registration here.
(1) The meeting will be held over two days via videoconference. Attendees must register by November 30, 2021.
- Wednesday, December 1, 2021, from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (EDT); and
- Thursday, December 2, 2021, from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (EDT).
(2) A BOSC deliberation videoconference will be held on December 14, 2021, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. (EDT). Attendees must register by December 13, 2021.
(3) A final BOSC deliberation videoconference will be held on December 20, 2021, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. (EDT). Attendees must register by December 17, 2021.
Meeting times are subject to change. This series of meetings is open to the public. Comments must be received by November 30, 2021, to be considered by the subcommittee. Requests for the draft agenda or making a presentation at the meeting will be accepted until November 30, 2021.
Learn more about the BOSC SSWR Subcommittee meetings here.
Build Back Better Act and Infrastructure Bill Scheduled for House Vote
The Build Back Better Act (HR 5376) was introduced in the House on September 27, and House members are expected to vote on it today, November 5. The plan funds the following programs, with original funding levels listed first, followed by amended funding levels in bold.
- $430M / $97M for rural water and wastewater programs (sections 306, 306C, 306D)
- $30B / $9B for lead service line replacement
- N/A / $970M for replacing rural lead service lines
- $500M / $225M for grants to assist low-income households paying for drinking water and wastewater services
- $5.314B / $1.77B for providing direct loans and grants to fund projects that improve, among other things, water efficiency of multifamily properties
- $75M / $50M for grants and other financial assistance to water resources research and technology institutes, centers, and equivalent agencies
- $2B / $550M for potable water supply projects and drought response and preparedness
- N/A / $100M for projects addressing the impact of reduced water inflows into inland water bodies
- $1B / $500M for maximizing the avoidance, minimization, or mitigation of climate change impacts on sewer systems
- $450M / $75M for construction, repair, or replacement of individual household decentralized wastewater treatment systems
Representatives are also scheduled to vote today on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (HR 3684). The current version of the bill funds the following:
- $11.7B for Clean Water SRF
- $4B for Drinking Water SRF
- $75M for WIFIA
- $1B for Great Lakes Restoration
- $238M for the Chesapeake Bay
- $89M for the Puget Sound
- $106M for the Long Island Sound
- $53M for the Gulf of Mexico
- $40M for Lake Champlain
Reminder: 11/9 Monitoring Standards and Assessment Committee Meeting
MSA will meet on Tuesday, November 9th from 3-4:30 EST. Please contact Jake Adler for more information.
Reminder: PFAS Subcommittee November Meeting Moved to 11/30
November’s PFAS Subcommittee Meeting has been moved from 11.18 to 11.30 to accommodate invited speakers. Please contact Jake Adler for more information.
Reminder: 12/2 ACWA Legal Affairs Committee
The next call of the ACWA Legal Affairs Committee will be on 12/2/21 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM ET. Please contact Julia Anastasio for more information.
Meetings and Webinars
EPA Virtual Forum on the Federal Funding Sources for Monitoring and Treatment of Harmful Algal Blooms
Date: November 9 and 10, 2021
Time: 1-4PM EST
EPA’s Water Infrastructure and Resiliency Finance Center (WIRFC) is hosting a virtual forum that will take place over two consecutive half-day sessions. During this virtual forum, participants from federal agencies will provide an overview of the federal funding programs related to harmful algal blooms (HABs), the funding allocation/application process for those programs, and how inland and coastal communities can use the programs to address HABs challenges.
The goals for this forum are to:
- Provide information to participants on federal sources available to fund the prevention, monitoring, and treatment of HABs;
- Hear about real-world examples of communities that have successfully used these funding sources for HABS related projects; and,
- Allow participants to share perspectives with federal agencies on their experiences, challenges, and successes accessing funding for HABs.
Please email email@example.com with any questions.
Public Meeting on GenX Assessment
Date: November 12, 2021
Time: 11AM-12PM EST
As part of EPA’s Strategic Roadmap to address PFAS, the agency has released the final human health toxicity assessment for Hexafluoropropylene Oxide (HFPO) Dimer Acid and its Ammonium Salt (GenX). The agency’s final GenX chemicals toxicity assessment represents a key step in advancing the scientific understanding of GenX chemicals and their effects on human health.
You are invited to join EPA’s public webinar on November 12, 2021 from 11:00am – noon EST for an overview of the toxicity assessment. The webinar uses the Microsoft TEAMS platform.
View EPA’s October 25th press release announcing the toxicity assessment here.
Free Training Webcast | “Keys to Success: Water Reuse in Small and Disadvantaged Communities”
Date: November 15, 2021
Time: 12-1PM EST
Please join water reuse expert Dr. Bruce Macler (EPA, retired), Pete Tjemsland (Sequim, Washington Public Works Department), and David Smith (Assistant Water Division Director, EPA Region 9) as they explore what it takes for smaller and resource-challenged communities to be successful in developing and implementing wastewater reuse and stormwater capture and use projects.
Permitting Water Innovation: Improving Permitting Processes to Support New Water Management Technologies and Strategies
Date: November 17, 2021
Time: 12-1PM EST
This free webinar will present findings and insights from recent research, water reuse actions, and specific case studies to explore how water permitting affects our ability to implement water recycling, energy recovery, nature-based solutions, and other innovative water management approaches. Presenters will explore whether and how changes in water permitting processes and dynamics can help advance water innovation and overcome barriers to implementation.
EPA Tools & Resources Webinar: Food Waste Research
Date: Wednesday, November 17
Time: 3-4 PM EST
Over one-third of the food produced in the United States is never eaten, wasting the resources used to produce it and creating a myriad of environmental impacts. Reducing wasted food presents opportunities to increase food security, feed the world’s growing population more sustainably, preserve water availability and quality, and address climate change. This presentation will highlight the latest research on the environmental impacts of U.S. food waste and the potential benefits of meeting the EPA/USDA goal of halving food waste by 2030, as reported in EPA’s forthcoming “From Farm to Kitchen: The Environmental Impacts of Food Waste” report. This presentation will also highlight findings of EPA’s recent “Emerging Issues in Food Waste” report series.
One Health Webinars for States
Date: November 17 (Part 2)
Time: 4-5 PM EST
One Health is a collaborative, multisectoral, and trans-disciplinary approach – working at local, regional, national, and global levels – to achieve optimal health and well-being outcomes recognizing the interconnections between people, animals, plants and their shared environment. In other words, it is a systems approach that considers contributions of the environment, animals, humans, and plants in a holistic manner.
Many Departments and Agencies have adopted this approach to better understand the linkages between human, animal, and plant health and the environment. By taking these factors into consideration, better and more relevant data and decision support tools can be developed and used to address specific issues, such as those related to the environment, environmental health, fish and wildlife, as part of a system that influences the outcome.
EPA’s Office of Research and Development (ORD), the
Environmental Council of the States (ECOS), the Association of State and Territorial Health officials (ASTHO), and the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA) invite states to informational webinars to learn more about One Health. The webinars discuss the importance of the One Health Initiative and the role of different health professionals within the One Health framework.
- Part 1: One Health: Environmental perspective (EPA and ECOS)
- Part 2: One Health: Environmental Health perspective (ASTHO)
and Natural Resource perspective (AFWA)
Troubleshooting Sludge Problems in Wastewater Lagoon Systems
Date: November 18
Time: 1-2:30 PM EST
EPA’s Office of Compliance invites you to a free webinar as part of EPA’s ongoing Technical Assistance Webinar Series: Improving CWA-NPDES Permit Compliance at Small Wastewater Treatment Systems.
This session on wastewater lagoon systems will discuss the problems that accumulated sludge creates. Topics of discussion include: the ten signs indicating it is time to remove sludge; the fifteen things affecting the rate of sludge accumulation; typical sludge accumulation rates; how to determine the volume and mass of sludge; and how to properly sludge judge and core sample a lagoon.
EPA Tools & Resources Training Webinar: Finding EPA Resilience Resources with the Environmental Resilience Tools Wizard
Date: December 1
Time: 3-4 PM EST
The Environmental Resilience Tools Wizard is a curated, online repository of EPA tools and resources designed to build community resilience to disasters. The wizard is designed to be used by state, tribal, and local environmental and emergency management agencies. It contains publicly available resources produced by EPA that address how to reduce disaster risks to the environment and human health. This webinar will provide an overview of the environmental dimensions of disasters and of building resilience and walkthrough examples of how to conduct searches and evaluate the results.
EPA Webinar: Smart Sewer Systems and Smart Data Infrastructure
Date: December 7
Time: 1-2 PM EST
Description: U.S. EPA is hosting a two-part webinar series on smart sewer systems and smart data infrastructure. Smart sewer systems use real-time monitoring and other advanced technologies to improve decision-making regarding capacity, management, and operation and maintenance programs. Smart data infrastructure is the ecosystem of technology tools and solutions focused on the collection, storage, and/or analysis of water-related data. Both webinars will highlight how communities have implemented these approaches to improve their sewer system management and decision-making.
Speakers: O.J. McFoy from the City of Buffalo, New York, Sewer Authority and Stacia Eckenwiler from City of Columbus, Ohio.
Environmental Analyst | NEIWPCC
Location: Lowell, Massachusetts
Closing Date: Open until filled
NEIWPCC is seeking a diplomatic, dynamic, and driven candidate to serve as a project manager in support of our mission on regional and national Water Quality Standards (WQS), nutrient and numeric water quality standards, Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL), Climate Change, Clean Water Act 303(d) national listing and TMDL training workshops. Candidate will serve as project manager for the Long Island Nitrogen Action Plan (LINAP) including the supervision of one full-time staff member. Will organize meetings of appropriate state and federal staff for the WQS, nutrient and numeric water quality standards, TMDL, and Climate Change workgroups, developing agendas and responding to requests for information from workgroup members, as well as updating NEIWPCC’s Executive Committee and Commission. Will develop and administer work plans, budgets, and contract/grant amendments, as well as develop requests for proposals, selection of contractors, and management of contracts.
For more information, click here.