Water Recycling Highlighted during ‘Imagine a Day without Water’
On Wednesday, October 23, the WateReuse Association and several member organizations participated in “Imagine a Day without Water,” which promotes the value of water. Examples of member participation included an article in the Chicago Sun Times encouraging businesses to recycle water authored by a commissioner from the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Chicago and a community meeting convened in Palo Alto, California to discuss regional opportunities for water reuse, among many other activities across the country. In addition, WateReuse Executive Patricia Sinicropi released a blog post discussing the essential value of clean and safe water and the benefits of water recycling.
New Legislation Will Support Reuse to Build Resilience
WateReuse Adopts Policy Statement on PFAS
Congress is currently contemplating new laws that would direct federal agencies to regulate Per- and Poly-fluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in a variety of ways. In response, the WateReuse Association adopted a set of principles to guide our engagement on the issue. The most likely legislative vehicle for new PFAS legislation is the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for FY 2020, which the House and Senate are currently negotiating. Both the House version and the Senate version of NDAA contain provisions related to the control of PFAS in water, land, and manufactured products.
EPA Invites Eight Water Recycling Projects to Apply for Low Interest WIFIA Loans
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced last week that it is inviting eight water reuse projects sponsored by WateReuse Association members to apply for Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loans. EPA received 51 letters of interest from both public and private entities in response to the 2019 WIFIA Notice of Funding Availability. In all, 38 projects in 18 states were invited to apply for WIFIA loans totaling approximately $6 billion to help finance over $12 billion in water infrastructure investments.
EPA Announces Workforce Initiative to Combat Staffing Shortages in Water Treatment
EPA recently announced the Water Workforce Initiative to help cities and communities across the country that are facing critical staffing shortages for the operation and maintenance of essential drinking water, wastewater, and recycled water infrastructure. The goal of this new initiative is to provide federal leadership, collaborate with partners and increase public awareness to bolster interest in water sector careers—a field that is charged with ensuring that all Americans have access to clean and safe water. The Water Workforce Initiative builds on recent efforts to promote water careers. Following further engagement with its partners, the agency intends to release a draft Water Workforce Initiative for public comment this winter.
State Updates and Member Profiles
Arizona: Scottsdale Uses DPR Water to Educate Community
Brian Biesemeyer, Executive Director of Scottsdale Water, was interviewed last week on KJZZ public radio about Scottsdale Water’s recent achievement of becoming the first Arizona utility permitted for direct potable reuse. Scottsdale is using its DPR permit to create educational opportunities for the community. The facility has given its water to 10 breweries to make beers that will be served at the One Water Brewing Showcase during Scottsdale’s Canal Convergence in November. Read More.
Nevada: WateReuse Nevada Partners with Girl Scouts on Water Reuse Education
WateReuse Nevada is hosting an outreach event for Brownie Girl Scouts on December 7 in Las Vegas that involves a series of activities and presentations to earn a badge called Wow! Wonders of Water Journey – LOVE Water. The activities will include learning opportunities on the water cycle, water pollution, and water recycling. The event is open to second and third graders. Read More.
New Mexico: State Agencies Discuss Water Reuse Opportunities in the Oil and Gas Industry
New Mexico state agencies held the first of five meetings last week to discuss opportunities to recycle water produced from hydraulic fracturing in the oil and gas industry. The Produced Water Act was signed into state law this year, which requires the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) to develop regulations and permit any produced water use outside the energy industry, such as crop irrigation or municipal drinking water supply. NMED and New Mexico State University recently announced a partnership to research produced water reuse. Read More.
WateReuse Members Recognized Across the Water Sector for Innovations in Water Reuse
Several WateReuse Association members were recognized last week by water industry organizations for their innovative water recycling programs. The Orange County Water District (California) received the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies’ 2019 Gold Award for Exceptional Utility Performance for its Groundwater Replenishment System. Pasco County Utilities (Florida) received the Engineering News Record Southeast Award of Merit/Water Environment for the Central Pasco County Beneficial Water Reuse project. SUEZ received the Best Performing Company in Water Reuse award at the 2019 IDA World Congress in Dubai.
WateReuse Customer Communications Tools and Resources
Profiles in Reuse: Flyer Explains Safety and Reliability of Potable Reuse
The WateReuse Association released a new flyer, Profiles in Reuse: Potable Reuse, which members can use to inform ratepayers, elected officials, and other stakeholders about the safety and reliability of using purified water as part of the drinking water supply. The flyer also supports WateReuse’s Medical Community Initiative, which seeks to build support for potable reuse among medical and public health officials. This flyer is the first in a series of Profiles in Reuse that will serve as resources for member communication on water recycling. Download Flyer.
Conferences and Events
1 pm PT | 4 pm ET (1 hour)
WateReuse Members: Free; Others: $49
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service, agriculture accounts for more than 80% of the nation’s water consumption. Water reuse is uniquely suited to provide resilience, local control, environmental protection, and high water quality for this critical demand. Join our webcast to learn about two innovative approaches to securing America’s food supply with water reuse, strategies for overcoming obstacles, and gain insight on how USDA conservation programs can be a valuable resource in funding these projects.
- Dr. Chris Hay, Conservation Design Scientist, Iowa Soybean Association
- Julie Hawkins, State Conservationist, USDA-NRCS
- Mike McCullough, Director of External Affairs, Monterey One Water
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