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December 14, 2020

Resilience Redefined: Registration Is Open for the 36th Annual WateReuse Symposium – Register Today!

Registration is open for the 36th Annual WateReuse Symposium, a series of live and on demand roundtables presented virtually March 15-25, 2021. Organized around the theme, Resilience Redefined and presented in collaboration with The Water Research Foundation, the Symposium will showcase the important role that water recycling plays in ensuring water security, safety, and supply.

The 2021 WateReuse Symposium offers fully interactive education that will connect you with colleagues via video and allow you to engage in manageable chunks of time over a period of several weeks:

  • Add a daily live roundtable to your calendar March 15-25, 2021. Join breakout discussions to interact face-to-face with presenters and other attendees.
  • Watch on demand roundtable presentations beginning March 1 for insightful discussions that will prepare you to fully participate in the live roundtables.
  • The full program, including recordings of the live roundtables, will be available through April 23, 2021.

Experience the 2021 WateReuse Symposium from the comfort of your own office, connect with colleagues, and earn professional development hours. Register today!

Deadline Approaching! Submit a Proposal for an Opportunity to Present at the 36th Annual WateReuse Symposium

The WateReuse Association invites proposals for presentations at the 36th Annual WateReuse Symposium, a series of live and on demand roundtables presented virtually March 15-25, 2021. Presentation proposals are due December 21, 2020.

Position yourself as a water reuse thought-leader by sharing creative solutions and approaches for water recycling as a public health and resiliency strategy. Share your expertise and leadership across the water sector! Submit a proposal here.

WateReuse invites water reuse experts, practitioners, and researchers to submit presentation proposals for pre-recorded, on demand roundtables to stimulate and provoke discussion, facilitate knowledge transfer and development of competencies, and challenge attendees to think of new and innovative ways to use water recycling to improve water resource management. Submit your proposal by December 21!

Washington Update

Congress Extends Funding for Water Recycling, Eyes Stimulus Package

Congress voted last week to extend the continuing resolution (CR) that is currently funding the government until Friday, December 18. The House and Senate will now work to finalize and approve a full funding package for FY 2021 before the Friday deadline. While the fiscal year begins annually in October, Congress does not often finalize negotiations on a funding package until the winter. In the interim, it simply extends the previous year’s funding levels via a CR.

Visit our earlier post for more information on the differences between the House and Senate FY 2021 draft funding bills. As we reported last week, Congressional leaders have discussed the possibility of attaching a roughly $900 billion stimulus measure to the final appropriations package; however, it is quite possible that they will be unable to reach a stimulus deal in time. Leaders are also considering attaching the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2020 to the final funding package. More on WRDA below.

U.S. EPA Issues Draft Guidance on Supreme Court Decision that Could Lead to Increased Regulation for Water Reuse

Last week, the U.S. EPA issued draft guidance on a April 2020 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that groundwater discharges are subject to National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting, if the groundwater discharge is “functionally equivalent” to a discharge into a navigable water. This new interpretation could increase the regulatory and cost burden for water reuse projects, including those intended to recharge aquifers, establish saltwater intrusion barriers, and mitigate land subsidence.

While the Court did provide some parameters by which to determine functional equivalence, it left much of the work to EPA. The draft guidance entitled, “Applying the Supreme Court’s County of Maui v. Hawaii Wildlife Fund Decision in the Clean Water Act Section 402 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit Program,” seeks to clarify how the Court’s new jurisdictional test relates to the existing NPDES permitting system, and offers an additional criterion for determining functional equivalence. The WateReuse Association’s Policy Committee will develop comments on the draft guidance, which is open for public comment until January 11, 2021. In the notice, EPA notes that it may pursue a rulemaking to provide further regulatory clarity.

House Passes Water Resources Development Act without Clean Water, Drinking Water, and Water Recycling Provisions

For the past several months, the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee have been negotiating a biennial water infrastructure package, often referred to as the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA). Earlier in the year, WateReuse was successful in getting top water recycling priorities into several of the bills that House and Senate negotiators were using to develop the final WRDA agreement. Unfortunately, negotiators were only able to reach agreement on items related to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Army Corps projects. As a result, the final 2020 agreement, which the House passed last week, and which the Senate is expected to pass this week, does not include reauthorization provisions for Clean Water Act programs, such as the Clean Water State Revolving Fund Program or the Alternative Water Source Grants Pilot Program; nor does the agreement direct the creation of a Federal Interagency Working Group on Water Reuse. The leaders of the committees of jurisdiction have indicated that they will work to pass another infrastructure bill next year that includes clean water, drinking water, and water recycling provisions. WateReuse will continue to work closely with Congress to secure these provisions in the new year.

State Updates and Member Profiles

Member Spotlight: Metropolitan Water District, Southern Nevada Water Authority Collaborate to Explore Development of Recycled Water Project

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California and Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) are partnering to explore development of a drought-proof water supply that could reduce reliance on the over-stressed Colorado River. Under an agreement approved December 8 by Metropolitan’s Board of Directors and SNWA’s Board of Directors last month, SNWA will contribute up to $6 million for environmental planning of the Regional Recycled Water Program, a proposed large-scale project to produce high quality water from purified wastewater. The investment by SNWA could lead to an interstate exchange of new locally produced water. Read more.

California: Oceanside May Receive $6 Million for Potable Reuse Construction

The U.S. Secretary of the Interior is expected to recommend a $6 million Title XVI WINN grant award for the construction of the Pure Water Oceanside project. Pure Water Oceanside will purify recycled water to create a local source of potable drinking water. The project will be the first operating advanced water purification facility in San Diego County. Read More.

Florida: Department of Environmental Protection Moves to Phase II of Potable Reuse Rulemaking

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is moving forward with Phase II of rulemaking to ensure proper regulation for implementation of potable reuse programs in the state of Florida. The rules amended in Chapter 62-610 F.A.C. Phase II Reuse of Reclaimed Water and Land Application will address updates necessary to be consistent with recommendations of the Potable Reuse Commission’s 2020 report “Advancing Potable Reuse in Florida: Framework for the Implementation of Potable Reuse in Florida” as required by Florida’s Clean Waterways Act of 2020. WateReuse Florida has been actively involved in leading the efforts that have been completed to date on both indirect and direct potable reuse.  WateReuse Florida chaired the Potable Reuse Commission, which prepared the report that provides a framework for potable reuse regulations. FDEP will host a public rulemaking workshop on January 14, 2021.

Florida: Pasco County to Provide Recycled Water to Three New Communities

Pasco County Utilities announced that it will bring reclaimed irrigation water to three new neighborhoods. All three communities have irrigation systems that are being fed by drinking water, with usage charged at current potable water rates. The new systems will provide lower-cost, reclaimed irrigation water to the communities while helping conserve drinking water. Read more.

Member Resources and Benefits

Engaging the Public Health Community on Water Reuse? Check out Our Online Resources

Although water reuse is a proven, science-based process that has been used safely in communities around the world for decades, the public is often skeptical when the concept is first introduced into a community. To build acceptance among medical and health professionals, WateReuse has launched the Medical Community Initiative and begun developing resources to support members in engaging with the public health community. Visit our website for videos, articles, and presentations that support engagement with medical professionals. New tools are being developed so check back for updates.

Conferences, Webcasts and Events

Webcast: Water Reuse Policy in the 117th Congress and Biden Administration

January 2021 marks the beginning of both a new administration in the White House and a new Congress. While Congress passed a number of key pieces of legislation in the final days of 2020, much work remains to be done, including the reauthorization of important water recycling programs. At the same time, the Biden Administration is coming in with an ambitious agenda related to climate change, the environment, and infrastructure, among other issues.

Please join us on January 27 at 2 pm EST for a webcast with Washington insiders to examine what’s on the congressional agenda for 2021 and what water-related priorities the Biden Administration is likely to push in its first year. Top Washington water sector lobbyists will discuss the status of key legislation and explain the opportunities to advance a water reuse policy agenda. Whether you plan to participate in our Virtual Water Week in the spring or are interested in what to expect from Congress and the new Administration in 2021, this webcast will be a national advocacy primer for water professionals. Register here.

Upcoming Events

Jan
27
Wed
Water Reuse Policy in the 117th Congress and Biden Administration (Webcast)
Jan 27 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Water Reuse Policy in the 117th Congress and Biden Administration (Webcast)
Please join Washington insiders to examine what’s on the congressional agenda for 2021 and what water-related priorities the Biden Administration is likely to push in its first year. Register Now! Join Us! 2:00 – 3:00 pm ET| 11:00 am – 12:00 pm PT WateReuse Members: Free Others: $49 January 2021 marks the beginning of both a new administration in the White House and a new Congress. While Congress passed a number of key pieces of legislation in the final days of 2020, much work remains to be done, including the reauthorization of important water recycling programs. At the same time, the Biden Administration is coming in with an ambitious agenda related to climate change, the environment, and infrastructure, among other issues. Top Washington water sector lobbyists will discuss the status of key legislation and explain the opportunities to advance a water reuse policy agenda. Whether you plan to participate in our Virtual Water Week in the spring or are interested in what to expect from Congress and the new Administration in 2021, this webcast will be a national advocacy primer for water professionals.

Presenters

  • Mia O’Connell, President, O’Connell & Dempsey, LLC
  • Pete Evich, Vice President, Van Scoyoc Associates
  • Jon Freedman, Senior Vice President, Global Government Affairs, SUEZ Water Technologies & Solutions
  • Greg Fogel, Policy Director, WateReuse Association
 
Feb
3
Wed
Stormwater Capture Drivers, Impediments, and Future Visions (Webcast)
Feb 3 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Register Now!
Join Us!
2:00 – 4:00 pm ET| 11:00 am – 1:00 pm PT
Fee: Complimentary

Join a group of stormwater management leaders from around the US to discuss stormwater capture motivations and drivers, barriers to progress, and future directions. This group will touch on questions such as:

  • Why are communities pursuing stormwater capture for use now?
  • How do community interests in stormwater harvesting vary across the country?
  • What factors get in the way of progress?
  • Where do we want to be with stormwater capture in 20 years?

The audience will learn about the different motivators, unique strategies, and opportunities to market and advance stormwater capture across the U.S.

Presenters

  • Randy Bartlett, Fairfax County VA
  • Sharlene Leurig, Texas Water Trade/Austin Water Forward
  • Mark Doneux, St. Paul, MN Capitol Region Watershed District
  • James Moore, Georgia Association of Water Professionals
  • Enrique Zaldivar, City of Los Angeles
  • Lynn Broaddus, Water Environment Federation
  • Drew Wenzel, Google

This webinar will be the first of a series of four webinars as part of the National Water Reuse Action Plan, Action 2.3.3. Co-sponsors include the WateReuse Association, U.S. EPA, National Association of Municipal Stormwater Agencies (NMSA), Re-Inventing the Nation’s Urban Water Infrastructure (ReNUWIt), Water Environment Federation, and Johnson Foundation at Wingspread (JFW).

Save the Date

Join us for the second webinar in this series.

Developing Stormwater Treatment Standards – Where’s the Action?
February 23, 2021
2:00 – 4:00 pm ET

Feb
5
Fri
Containment of Covid-19 on a College Campus via Wastewater-Based Epidemiology (Webcast)
Feb 5 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

WateReuse Arizona Section Meeting & Webinar
9:00 am – 10:00 am Pacific | 12:00 – 1:00 pm Eastern
WateReuse Members: Free
Others: $49
PDHs: 1

Register Now!

Wastewater-based epidemiology was utilized to detect SARS-Cov-19 in the wastewater of student dorms upon re-entry of University of  Arizona students in the fall semester of 2020. Positive wastewater samples allowed for subsequent targeted clinical testing of dorm students and the identification of both symptomatic and asymptomatic Covid-19 infections. Early detection of infected individuals resulted in reduced exponential spread of Covid-19 and allowed the university to remain open throughout the semester.

Presenter

Ian Pepper, Director, WEST Center & Professor, Environmental Science

Dr. Pepper is an environmental microbiologist whose research has focused on the fate and transport of pathogens in air, water, soils and municipal wastes. More recently, he has investigated the potential for real-time detection of contaminants in water distribution systems. Dr. Pepper is Professor in the Community, Environment, and Policy Department in the UA College of Public Health, as well as Professor in the Department of Agricultural & Biosystems Engineering. In addition to his duties at the WEST Center, he is director of the National Science Foundation Water Quality Center at the UA.

He also teaches a graduate level laboratory class on Environmental Microbiology, and an undergraduate class on Pollution Science. He has co-authored numerous books and journal articles on Environmental Microbiology and Pollution Science, and is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Academy of Microbiology, the American Society of Agronomy, and the Soil Science Society of America.

He received his Ph.D. in Soil Microbiology from The Ohio State University, M.S. in Soil Biochemistry from Ohio State, and B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Birmingham, Great Britain.

Feb
9
Tue
Los Angeles Chapter Meeting @ Virtual
Feb 9 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Zoom Meeting 

When: Feb 9, 2021 11:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Register in advance for this meeting:

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYpceCqqz4tEtNiOeRgAqBZza_hcILDEx10

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Feb
17
Wed
Communicating about Potable Reuse and Public Health: Tools for Success (Webcast)
Feb 17 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Register Now!

Join Us!
2:00 – 3:00 pm ET| 11:00 am – 12:00 pm PT
WateReuse Members: Free
Others: $49

As more communities face water quantity challenges, water reuse is a viable option to expand drinking water sources.  Although all water is recycled as it moves through the environment, the practice of treating wastewater to be used for potable water is sometimes met with skepticism. Some of this stems from the “toilet to tap” campaigns that may have led to more rejection of water reuse than acceptance.

Quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA) is a framework that evaluates the many factors impacting water reuse practices and management, as well as those influencing community perception.  With the emergence of new pathogens, such as SARS-CoV-2, the acceptance of water recycling as part of a community’s drinking water sustainability plan may be even more challenging.  This webcast will describe how QMRA may be used to communicate with stakeholders – including healthcare providers – the human health safeguards associated with water reuse implementation.

Presenters

  • Karla Mendez, PhD Candidate, UTHealth Houston School of Public Health, El Paso campus
  • Kristina Mena, MSPH, PhD, Regional Dean and Associate Professor, UTHealth Houston School of Public Health, El Paso campus
Feb
25
Thu
Los Angeles Chapter Virtual Happy Hour
Feb 25 @ 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Virtual Happy Hour Via Zoom

Register in advance to participate:

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwudeCsqTsoGt2oVFyg_xaPdNJ9GN6BzN-M

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Mar
12
Fri
Meeting of the Board of Directors – First Quarter 2021 @ Virtual
Mar 12 @ 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

First Quarter:
Remote – Zoom
Friday, March 12, 2021
11:00 am to 2pm EST // 10 to 1 CST // 9:00 to 12 MST // 8:00 to 11 PST

Mar
15
Mon
36th Annual WateReuse Symposium
Mar 15 – Mar 25 all-day
36th Annual WateReuse Symposium

36th Annual WateReuse Symposium: Redefining Resiliency

March 15-25, 2021

Join us for a series of live and on demand virtual roundtables!

Learn More

Apr
13
Tue
Los Angeles Chapter Meeting @ Virtual
Apr 13 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Zoom Meeting

When: Apr 13, 2021 11:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Register in advance for this meeting:

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwkd-6tqjsiH9ztJm_6CN-heC5W3IEcOK7V

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Jun
4
Fri
Meeting of the Board of Directors – Second Quarter 2021 @ Virtual
Jun 4 @ 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

Second Quarter:
Remote – Zoom
Friday, June 4, 2021
11:00 am to 2pm EST // 10 to 1 CST // 9:00 to 12 MST // 8:00 to 11 PST

Join WateReuse

WateReuse is the only trade association that focuses solely on advancing laws, policy and funding to increase water reuse. Our niche strategy sets us apart from other organizations in the water industry.

Join Today

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