Negotiations Continue for Infrastructure Legislation as WateReuse Advocates for Water Recycling
President Biden and congressional leaders continued to negotiate an infrastructure package last week. Republican lawmakers indicated a willingness to support as much as $800-900 billion in spending, relative to the President’s $2.25 trillion proposal. Republican leaders had previously proposed $568 billion as their initial counteroffer. The initial Republican proposal included $35 billion for drinking water and wastewater infrastructure and $14 billion for water storage, while the Administration’s plan calls for $111 billion for water systems infrastructure, focusing on resilient systems and providing clean, safe water to all communities. Both sides aim to reach a deal in the coming weeks, though the scope of the bipartisan deal remains murky.
The WateReuse Association continues to work with congressional leaders and champions to advance water reuse policy goals in the legislation. That said, it is possible that a bipartisan package will ultimately be limited in scope to transportation and broadband investments, and exclude most water infrastructure spending. Under that scenario, WateReuse will advocate for a second legislative package to greatly expand investments in water recycling.
WRAP Engagement Opportunity: Stormwater Capture and Reuse Webinar Series Continues
Please join us on Wednesday, June 9 at 2 pm ET for Multiple Benefits of Stormwater Capture and Reuse Projects, the third in a series of web-based events associated with the national Water Reuse Action Plan (WRAP) Action Item 2.3.3. This action focuses on opportunities and challenges related to urban stormwater capture and use. The free webcast will highlight stormwater capture and reuse projects from around the country and explore how these projects can be designed to provide benefit far beyond the management of stormwater. Speakers will discuss the drivers for these projects, life cycle considerations, and lessons learned. The presenters include:
- Matt Fabry, San Mateo County, CA
- Mitchell Katz, Orange County FL
- Dave Smith, U.S. EPA Pacific Southwest Region
- Chris Earley, Washington, DC
This event is hosted by the Water Environment Federation and co-sponsored by U.S. EPA, the WateReuse Association, the National Municipal Stormwater Alliance (NMSA), and the Johnson Foundation at Wingspread. Register here.
State Updates and Member Profiles
Member Spotlight: Carollo Partners with EPA to Develop Drinking Water Guidelines Based on Innovations in Potable Reuse
Recognizing advances in UV disinfection pioneered on water reuse projects, the U.S. EPA worked with Carollo Engineers to develop and publish Innovative Approaches for Validation of Ultraviolet Disinfection Reactors for Drinking Water Systems. The four-year research project, funded by EPA, documented new approaches for UV monitoring and validation that have become common in potable reuse treatment systems. The guidance provides detailed information on defining, validating, and implementing four new UV dose monitoring algorithms that provide utilities a more cost-effective, robust, and simplified implementation of UV disinfection. Read more.
FL: Members Celebrate Florida Water Reuse Week, May 16-22
WateReuse Florida celebrated Water Reuse Week 2021 last week as members issued proclamations and took the opportunity to remind the public how critical water reuse is to the health of Florida’s water resources. About 800 million gallons of reclaimed water are used across the state each day, representing a significant part of the water management strategy for many communities. Members participating in Florida Water Week included Southwest Florida Water Management District, South Florida Water Management District, St. Johns River Water Management District, Clay County Utility Authority, and Toho Water Authority, among many others.
FL: Oakland Explores Options for Irrigation with Non-Potable Water
The Town of Oakland is exploring stormwater reuse to meet a state requirement to use lower-quality water for irrigation. In a recent meeting of the Town Commission, Public Works Director Mike Parker discussed barriers to reclaimed water use, including cost and treatment capacity. Since 2013, all new construction in the community has included a separate irrigation piping to prepare for irrigation with non-potable water. Read more.
FL: Brewery Uses MBR Treatment to Turn Industrial Wastewater into Reuse Quality Water
The Florida Brewery partnered with technology provider Cambrian to install a membrane bioreactor (MBR) system to treat its wastewater, producing water of sufficient quality for non-potable reuse. The onsite treatment system allows the brewery to send the water to the city’s wastewater treatment system instead of trucking it off site. The project helps the brewery meet environmental compliance and reduces wastewater disposal costs. Read more.
Op-ed: Vanderbilt Professor Calls Recycled Water the Future of Water
Vanderbilt University professor, Amanda Little, explains why water recycling is becoming the only alternative to secure the economic and public health future in many regions in a Bloomberg opinion article. Professor Little explores the recycled water story in the U.S. in states such California, Florida, and Texas, noting that technology at California’s Carlsbad and Orange County plants produces ultra-pure water that provides a new water supply essential to our resilient infrastructure. Read more.
Water Research Foundation Announces New Project Funding; Seeks Volunteers
The Water Research Foundation (WRF) will post Requests for Proposals in August and is seeking volunteers for seven new research projects. WRF also prioritized four projects that include advanced treatment for potable reuse, stormwater and flood management, and water infrastructure resiliency. WRF encourages utilities to participate in these new research projects through the Utility Participation in Research Process. Utilities can serve as a test facility, provide samples, respond to surveys, loan equipment, or share staff expertise on research projects of interest. Additionally, subject matter experts can volunteer to serve on Project Advisory Committees that will oversee each funded project. Learn more about volunteer opportunities here.
Purdue Researchers Develop Energy Efficient Desalination
Purdue University engineers have developed a new approach for reverse osmosis treatment that provides better energy efficiency, longer-lasting equipment, and an ability to process water of a much higher salinity. Called “batch reverse osmosis,” the system processes a set quantity of water at a time rather than keeping a constant flow at high-pressure levels. In research results published in Desalination, researchers indicate that their models offer the lowest energy consumption ever for seawater desalination. Read more.
State Department Seeks Membrane Specialist for Six Week Project in Egypt
The Fulbright Specialist Program (FSP) seeks a highly qualified individual to serve as a Specialist and consult on the development of hollow fiber membrane modules, especially for reverse osmosis, including consulting on membrane module design, appropriate adhesive for potting for the locally developed hollow fibers, potting techniques, successful module testing, and design for multi-spinnerets system. This project, “Hollow Fiber Membranes for Water Treatment” would involve one approximately 15-day visit to Egypt. Ideally this Specialist would travel in either June 2021 or mid-September 2021– however, project dates are flexible depending on the chosen candidate’s availability. Applicants must be U.S. citizens and the deadline to submit a brief statement of interest and CV/resume is May 26, 2021. Read more.
France: Veolia Explores Expanding Water Reuse
With growing water stress, Veolia is exploring potable reuse in France following in the paths of Australia, California, Namibia, Texas, and Singapore. Currently in France, less than 1% of water is reused and the main barrier to reuse is regulatory. The technologies exist to produce ultra-pure water and 83% of French people would be prepared to drink water produced from wastewater. The European Union estimates by 2025 6.6 billion m3 of water could be reused. Read more.
Member Resources and Benefits
Activity Booklet Provides Water Reuse Education for Late Elementary and Early Middle School Students
Looking for a Resource to Engage with Students on Water Recycling Either Remotely or in Person? Use the new Water Reuse Activity Booklet to introduce 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 in partnership with the WateReuse Association and Project WET Foundation. Learn more about the contents of the booklet in this short video. The booklet is available on the Project WET store.
Conferences, Webcasts and Events
Join Israel Water Reuse Virtual Tour May 25-27
Join us 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 percent of its wastewater for beneficial uses as a solution to extreme water stress. Register here.
This event fulfills Action 11.1 in the National Water Reuse Action Plan, “Facilitate U.S.-Israel Collaboration on Water Reuse.” The tour will be presented in three sessions, highlighting applications relevant to the US perspective:
- 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.
Water Reuse: Where Are We Now, and Where Are We Going?
May 27, 2021
1 pm PT | 4 pm PT
Join the Orange County Water District to hear from experts in water reuse on lessons learned, best practices, and what’s to come, including a guide for California utilities to use when considering direct potable reuse (DPR) projects or future DPR regulations from the State Water Resources Control Board. Register here.
Webcast: Digital Platform, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Potable Reuse Projects
June 1, 2021
11 am PT | 2 pm ET
In this webcast, our presenters will introduce how digital platforms including artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can be used to improve all aspects of water recycling, including asset management strategies, operational efficiencies, enhance source control, validate unit process performance, predict product water quality and making sound decisions for assessing suitability of product water for human consumption. Register here.
Early Bird Registration and Discount Room Rate Expire July 7!
AZ Water Association and the Arizona Section of WateReuse Association will once again bring together thought leaders from across the Southwest for our annual symposium at Little America Hotel in Flagstaff, Arizona July 24 – 26, 2022.
Sunday: Kick-off Reception and 6th Annual Purple Water Balloon Battle at 5:00 PM. Pick a team/t-shirt color (ASU, NAU, UA or Purple if you want to be Switzerland) and get in the game.
Monday: Full day of Symposium sessions with breakfast & lunch at Little America Hotel. Shuttle to dinner at The Museum Club.
Tuesday: Half-day workshop: “Defining the Future of Direct Potable Reuse in Arizona”
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July 28, 2022
Summit: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Social: 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
The Summer Summit and Social will offer an on-site approach to learn about recycled water and its many benefits and opportunities, as well as network with leaders in water reuse along with local and state representatives.
Join us to learn about the Metropolitan Wastewater Management Commission (MWMC)’s current recycled water uses at its treatment facilities, the next step in advancing recycled water for community use, and the immense opportunities for recycled water’s future role as an integrated environmental and water management asset. Engage with other leaders to discuss the positive impact recycled water can make on the One Water we all share.
Register for an optional morning tour of the MWMC’s Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant and Biocycle Farm on Friday, July 29 at 9 a.m.
Summit Location: MWMC’s Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant, 410 River Avenue, Eugene, OR
Who: WateReuse members, water industry leaders, local and state representatives
Cost: The Summit, Social and Tours are free, but registration is required.
- Register Here
- Learn more about the MWMC and their recycled water programAdditional information and an itinerary will be provided in the coming weeks to registered attendees.
11 am PT | 2 pm ET (1 hour)
WateReuse Members: Free; Others: $49
According to the US Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the nation’s data centers collectively consumed 165 billion gallons of water in 2014. Without intervention and investment, water and energy use of data centers is expected to continue growing rapidly. These trends risk putting data centers into competition with other growing businesses for space, energy, and water, and pose a challenge for data center development in regions with limited water resources. In this webcast, Arcadis and Tomorrow Water will discuss their CoFlow concept which involves the co-location of water reclamation facilities and data centers to allow exchanging water and cooling capacities.
- Ufuk Erdal, Arcadis
- Jon Liberzon, Tomorrow Water
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