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February 1, 2021

Resilience Redefined: Registration Is Open for the 36th Annual WateReuse Symposium – Reserve Your Spot Today

Washington Update

House Announces Leadership for Committees with Key Roles in Water Reuse Policy and Funding

WateReuse Members Profiled in EPA Water Workforce Compendium

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is showcasing the successes of several WateReuse Association members in recruiting and retaining a qualified workforce to manage water reuse, wastewater, and drinking water programs. As a key element of its Water Workforce Initiative, EPA developed a compendium of case studies describing how nine utilities across the country are taking innovative steps to implement workforce programs. The new report, Making Water a Career Choice: A Compendium of Case Studies from Across the Country, highlights efforts on workforce recruitment, retention, competency, and community partnerships.

Utilities profiled in the compendium include WateReuse members Moulton Niguel Water District, AlexRenew, and San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. WateReuse is a partner in EPA’s Water Workforce Initiative along with several other national water organizations. Read the case studies report here.

Bureau of Reclamation Points to WateReuse Member Projects to Highlight Value of Federal Investment in Water Recycling

In a new report, the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation informed Congress that investment in water recycling is reducing the risk to water supplies in the West. Every 5 years, Reclamation submits a report to Congress under the SECURE Water Act that analyzes projected risks to water supplies in the West using the best available science and highlights collaborative efforts to mitigate those risks. In its report to Congress, Water Reliability in the West: 2021 SECURE Water Act, Reclamation highlights the success of Title XVI projects at El Paso Water Utilities and Pure Water Monterey. The report lists the 749 WaterSmart projects since 2016. Read more

WateReuse and NACWA Joint Comments Included in Finalized Maui Guidance

The U.S. EPA’s guidance memorandum “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” was quickly finalized before inauguration. The final guidance includes language submitted jointly by the WateReuse Association and NACWA acknowledging stormwater controls, green infrastructure, water reuse and recycling, and groundwater recharge are less likely to trigger a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit under the functionally equivalent test described in a U.S. Supreme Court decision. WateReuse will continue to track the guidance as it becomes clear what the Biden Administration’s next steps will be.

New EPA Grant Program Can Help Utilities Build the Recycled Water Workforce of the Future

Last week, the U.S. EPA released a Request for Applications for the Innovative Water Infrastructure Workforce Development Grant Program. Applications will be accepted through March 26, 2021. Grants are between $200,000 and $500,000 for efforts aimed at innovative career development opportunities in the drinking water, wastewater, and water recycling utility sectors. Read more

Bureau of Reclamation Funds nearly $1.2 Million in Desalination Research

The Bureau of Reclamation announced nearly $1.2 million in funding for eight projects across Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas through the Desalination and Water Purification Research Program. The projects were selected for demonstrating a potential to increase water supply while decreasing cost, energy consumption, and additional environmental impacts. Funding recipients include GHD, National Water Research Institute, New Mexico State University, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, Noria Water Technologies, Inc., Texas State University, University of Arizona, and the University of New Mexico. Read more.

State Updates and Member Profiles

Welcome New Members!

The WateReuse Association welcomes the following new members:

Member Spotlight: El Paso Water Receives $4.5 Million to Expand Aquifer Storage and Recharge

Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced last week that El Paso Water will receive a $4.5 million grant to expand its aquifer recharge project, which currently injects up to 3 million of gallons of recycled water into the Hueco Balson aquifer daily to slow the decline of aquifer levels. The expansion plan will use a combination of recycled water, treated river water, and stormwater to recharge the aquifer. The Texas Military Commission provided the grant funding to support water resiliency for El Paso’s Fort Bliss. Read more.

Member Spotlight: Hillsborough County’s Bart Weiss Explains the Value of Engaging with Medical Professionals to Support Potable Reuse

Why is it that doctors are only focused on 40% of the human body? According to Bart Weiss, Chief Officer for Innovation and Resiliency at Hillsborough County Public Utilities in Florida, it is because medical professionals are not experts on what makes up the other 60% of the human body: water. In a recent LinkedIn article, Weiss discusses research that indicates that the public trusts medical professionals to tell them what water is safe to drink. As a result, the water recycling industry is taking a leadership role in engaging and educating public health and medical professionals on the safety of drinking water. Read more.

California: High School Researcher Discovers Low-Tech Way to Recycle Water

Shreya Ramachandran, a high school senior, teamed up with the University of California, Berkley to research alternative soap products to allow for more effective gray water recycling. Ramachandran’s efforts centered on her family’s use of soap nuts and a desire to conserve water. The research found graywater produced from the use of soap nuts and several organic detergents in a home could be safely reused for non-potable uses. She has earned several awards and established her own non-profit called The Grey Water Project aimed at educating the public on water reuse practices. Read more.

Texas: State Water Development Board Receives $72 Million to Support Water Infrastructure, Including Water Reuse

The U.S. EPA awarded the Texas State Water Development Board $72.6 million to provide low-interest loans for water recycling and other clean water projects under the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF). The loans address water quality infrastructure projects that manage wastewater systems, nonpoint source pollution, or projects to improve water reuse or efficiency. Under the CWSRF, EPA provides grants to all 50 states plus Puerto Rico to capitalize state CWSRF loan programs, and states contribute an additional 20 percent to match the federal grants. Read more.

Member Resources and Benefits

Now Available! New Activity Booklet Provides Water Reuse Education for Late Elementary and Early Middle School Students

The Project WET Foundation and the WateReuse Association announce the release of a new Water Reuse booklet that introduces students to the world of water reuse with fun activities that develop math and science skills. Students will learn about the urban water cycle, the treatment processes that make water safe to use again, and much more! The booklet was produced with the support of the Arizona, Colorado, Florida, and Texas WateReuse State Sections. Check out the booklet highlights in this short video.

The booklet is available on the Project WET store. WateReuse members interested in ordering 250 copies or more through March 20 will receive a 20% discount using the coupon code: WATEREUSE.

Conferences, Webcasts and Events

Webcast: Stormwater Capture Drivers, Impediments, and Future Visions

February 3, 2021
11 am PT | 2 pm ET

Join a group of stormwater management leaders from around the US to discuss stormwater capture motivations and drivers, barriers to progress, and future directions. The audience will learn about opportunities to market and advance stormwater capture. Register here.

Webcast: Communicating about Potable Reuse and Public Health –Tools for Success

February 17, 2021
11 am PT | 2 pm ET

This webcast will describe methods to communicate with stakeholders – including healthcare providers – regarding the human health safeguards associated with potable reuse implementation. Register here.

Upcoming Events

May
12
Wed
Water Reuse in Bioenergy Production – A Pathway to Conservation and Resiliency (Webcast)
May 12 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Water Reuse in Bioenergy Production – A Pathway to Conservation and Resiliency (Webcast)
Join May Wu, Principal Environmental System Scientist with Argonne National Laboratory, for a webcast on the role of water reuse in bioenergy production. 11:00 am – 12:00 pm PT | 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET WateReuse Members: Free | Others: $49 Register Now! Production of bioenergy from a range of feedstocks and biorefining pathways requires a substantial amount of water for irrigation, conversion process, cooling, and steam generation. Because the feedstock varies with climate and soil regions, an increased production will have implications in the availability of regional and local freshwater resources across the U.S. It is critical to understand how fit-for-purpose water recycling can be used to conserve freshwater. This webcast presents findings from an Argonne National laboratory analyses of potential recycled water use to produce biofuels from conventional crops and algae and generate power by incorporating technology, climate, and geospatial-temporal components. Findings suggest a significant potential of producing advanced biofuel while doubling the amount of recycled water in use nationally. Results from this project support informed decision-making and strategic planning for water sustainable bioenergy development.

Presenter

May Wu is a principal environmental system scientist at Argonne National Laboratory. Her research interests are water resource use, water quality, and wastewater management in the production of biofuels and conventional energy.
May
25
Tue
Advancing Water Reuse Through State Focused Partnerships: Oregon Workshop 3
May 25 all-day

WateReuse Pacific Northwest State Workshop Series

Advancing Water Reuse Through State Focused Partnerships: Washington Workshop 3
May 25 all-day

WateReuse Pacific Northwest State Workshop Series

Israel Water Reuse Virtual Tour (Webcast)
May 25 @ 10:00 am – May 27 @ 12:00 pm
Israel Water Reuse Virtual Tour (Webcast)

You’re invited to learn about Israel’s water reuse technology and policy approaches as part of a knowledge sharing partnership between the US and Israel. Israel has accomplished extensive infrastructure, regulatory, and institutional reform to recycle over 85 per cent of its wastewater for beneficial uses as a solution to extreme water stress.

Register Now!

This three-session tour will cover Israel’s water reuse regulatory approaches, case studies, technology, and agricultural irrigation applications relevant to the US perspective. Participants are encouraged to attend the session(s) most relevant to their interests.

  • Session 1: Policy and Regulation of Water Reuse in Israel
    Tuesday, May 25 from 10 AM to 12 PM EDT
  • Session 2: Israel’s Approach to Water Reuse Implementation, Technology, and Mechanisms
    Wednesday, May 26 from 10 AM to 12 PM EDT
  • Session 3: Increasing Israel’s Agricultural Irrigation Efficiency through Recycled Water
    Thursday, May 27 from 10 AM to 12 PM EDT

This event is hosted by the Israeli Ministry for Environmental Protection, the Economic & Trade Mission at the Embassy of Israel, and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in collaboration with the Israel Water Authority, Israel Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Israel Ministry of Health, WaterEdge.IL, WateReuse Association, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

This event is in fulfillment of Action 11.1 in the National Water Reuse Action Plan, “Facilitate U.S.-Israel Collaboration on Water Reuse.” and in support of the EPA/Israeli Ministry of Environmental Protection Memorandum of Understanding.

May
26
Wed
Advancing Water Reuse Through State Focused Partnerships: Idaho Workshop 2
May 26 all-day

WateReuse Pacific Northwest State Workshop Series

May
27
Thu
Process Interrupted: Using BOR Funded Desalination Research to Evaluate an Innovative Process Train (Webcast)
May 27 @ 10:30 am – 11:30 am

WateReuse Arizona Section Meeting & Webinar
10:30 am – 11:30 am Pacific | 1:30 – 2:30 pm Eastern
WateReuse Members: Free
Others: $49
PDHs: 1

Register Now!

The Southwest U.S. is challenged by freshwater scarcity and salt accumulation in its watersheds. A significant contributor to salt loading in urban sewersheds are the many industrial and commercial cooling towers that dot the landscape. These towers are very effective at cooling in arid environments; however, they use scarce freshwater resources to absorb heat through evaporation while accumulating the salts and minerals that must be discharged as blowdown.

Garver was selected by the Bureau of Reclamation’s Desalination and Water Purification Research Program Pitch to Pilot to research a novel treatment train that will reduce the amount of salt discharged from industrial cooling tower blowdown.

Garver’s zero liquid discharge, membrane desalination treatment train is estimated to remove more than two tons of salt from the 600 ton cooling tower blowdown and saved approximately 200,000 gallons of make-up water from the potable water supply over the eight-month field-testing portion of the pilot study.  The reduction of salt discharged to the sewer will benefit the local wastewater treatment plants and the local watershed, while also improving the water quality of the cooling towers with a low energy intensity treatment train.

This presentation will address the BOR Desalination Pitch to Pilot Program, the thought process behind the EC, UF, GAC, RO with VAED concentrate management treatment train and report on commissioning efforts to date.

Presenter

Eric Dole is a senior project manager at Garver where he serves as the Water and Energy Practice Leader.  He specializes in delivering sustainable infrastructure solutions through optimized hydraulic systems and optimized treatment processes.  In 2019, Eric was selected for the Water Research Foundation’s 12-person Energy Advisory Committee where he advises the group on energy efficiency and process optimization projects.

Eric was one of the world’s first water professionals to be certified as a Pump Systems Assessment Professional (PSAP) through the Hydraulics Institute, which allows him to set the standard for pump systems assessments and optimization techniques, leading to energy efficient and reliable systems.  His process mechanical expertise can be seen in his patented designs for two zero liquid discharge brine management systems, of which one was awarded the 2011 AZ Water Reuse Project of the Year Award and the other was selected for RO concentrate treatment in the Bureau of Reclamation Desalination Pitch to Pilot Research Project that started in September 2020 and is scheduled for commissioning in May 2021.

Jun
1
Tue
Digital Platform, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Potable Reuse Projects (Webcast)
Jun 1 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Digital Platform, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Potable Reuse Projects (Webcast)

Learn how digital platforms that include artificial intelligence and machine learning can be used to improve asset management strategies and operational efficiencies.

11:00 am – 12:00 pm PT | 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET
WateReuse Members: Free
Others: $49
PDHs: 1

Register Now!

In this webcast, our presenters will introduce how digital platforms that include artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can be used to improve asset management strategies and operational efficiencies, as well as enhance source control, validate unit process performance, predict product water quality and make sound decisions for assessing suitability of product water for human consumption.

The data collected from pilot and full-scale potable reuse treatment trains have been used to develop artificial neuron networks as part of an ML platform. The platform clearly demonstrates that ML can be used to predict, for example, the product water total organic carbon (TOC) concentration of a pilot advanced treatment facility and the specific fluxes on the third stage of a full-scale advanced treatment facility as the feed quality and operating conditions are changed.

The methodology used and model outputs will be discussed during the webcast. The presenters will also examine how we can couple AI/ML concepts with the Internet of Things (IoT) and next generation of the SCADA systems to operate and maintain assets efficiently while significantly enhancing public and regulatory confidence in potable reuse projects.

Presenters

  • Ufuk Erdal, Arcadis
  • Jim Cooper, Arcadis
  • Raluca Constantinescu, Arcadis
  • Ozan Erdal, University of Washington
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

Jun
8
Tue
Los Angeles Chapter Meeting @ Virtual
Jun 8 @ 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Zoom Meeting

When: Jun 8, 2021 11:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Register in advance for this meeting:

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwrcOurqT8rHNbep0DGS8jHvaxNGuGs2cbu

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

Jun
16
Wed
Desalination Research and Technology (Webcast)
Jun 16 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

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.

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