EPA Webinar on Ohio’s Efforts to Reduce Nutrient Pollution in Lakes

EPA’s Watershed Academy will conduct a webinar entitled, “Understanding Nutrient Issues Affecting Ohio’s Inland Lakes,” on Wednesday, November 30 at 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm (eastern).  The webinar will present information on the evolution of Ohio’s efforts to protect and restore inland lakes from nutrient related impairments through the strategic collection and use of data along with engagement of appropriate watershed stakeholders. For more information and to register for the webinar, visit EPA’s Watershed Academy website.

GAO Report Federal Agencies’ HABs Related Expenditures and Coordination 

The GAO has released a report entitled, Environmental Protection: Information on Federal Agencies’ Expenditures and Coordination Related to Harmful Algae.  The report examines how much federal agencies expended on these activities from fiscal years 2013 through 2015; and how federal agencies coordinate their activities with each other and with nonfederal stakeholders. In the report, GAO found that, “Twelve federal agencies reported expending an estimated total of roughly $101 million from fiscal years 2013 through 2015 to fund various research, monitoring, and other activities related to harmful algae…blooms in marine or freshwater environments.” In addition, GAO found that federal agencies are coordinating with each other and with other stakeholders to share information, expertise, and opportunities for collaboration; and are participating in groups, and task forces, and coordination efforts led by federal agencies, states, international organizations, or academics.  For more information and to read the report, visit the GAO website.

SWC Learning Exchange Webinar: Accelerating Investment in Watershed Protection

le_homepage_bannerThe Source Water Collaborative is pleased to announce the next webinar in the Learning Exchange Webinar Series.  This third webinar will feature a virtual panel discussion on “Accelerating Investment in Watershed Protection,” with three distinguished panelists who will share their perspectives and answer audience questions on establishing and growing successful watershed investment programs.  The panelists are Robert Morgan of the Beaver Water District in Arkansas; Peter Stangel of the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities, and Todd Gartner of the World Resources Institute.

NEW Date:  Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Time:  1:00pm – 2:30pm (eastern time)

Register for the webinar here.

EPA Launches Online Climate Change Adaptation Resource Center for Local Communities

EPA has launched its new online Climate Change Adaptation Resource Center (ARC-X) that will provide community leaders across the nation with information and tools to increase resilience. ARC-X users can navigate this self-guided portal to find information that is tailored to their needs, based on where they live and their particular issues of concern. The system includes information on the impacts of climate change; adaptation strategies to address the impacts; case studies that can be replicated for similar circumstances; links to EPA tools; and sources of funding and technical assistance from EPA and other federal agencies.  For more information, go to:  www.epa.gov/ARC-X


EPA Technical Assistance Now Available for Community Smart Growth Development

EPA invites communities to apply for targeted technical assistance from its Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities Program to help overcome barriers to implementing smart growth development approaches. Communities can choose from tools to help them make development more equitable, attract infill development, assess policies in small towns and rural areas, improve resilience to floods, or promote streets that are safe for all users and provide environmental benefits (including protecting drinking water sources).  EPA will deliver the assistance using teams of experts who conduct one- to two-day workshops in the selected communities. After the workshop, the community gets a next-steps memo with specific actions it can take if it chooses to implement the ideas generated in the workshop.

Letters of interest from communities are due by October 12, 2016. Eligible entities are local, county, or tribal governments, or nonprofit organizations that have the support of the local government on whose behalf they are applying.  For more information, visit EPA’s website.

EPA Releases Final Class VI Geologic Sequestration Guidance

EPA has released its final guidance document entitled, “Geologic Sequestration of Carbon Dioxide: Underground Injection Control (UIC) Program Class VI Reporting, Recordkeeping and Data Management Guidance,” along with two supporting documents. EPA’s Class VI Rule sets minimum technical criteria for Class VI injection wells for the purposes of protecting underground sources of drinking water, as part of the SDWA UIC Program.  This guidance will assist permit applicants and owners or operators in submitting and managing the large volumes of information associated with Class VI geologic sequestration projects. The guidance also identifies common file formats used for data and technical reports and describes how the Agency’s electronic Geologic Sequestration Data Tool can be used to meet the Class VI electronic reporting requirements throughout the duration of a Class VI project.  For more information, visit EPA’s website.

CREAT 3.0 Webinars Coming Soon

Just a reminder, EPA’s Water Security Division invites you to join them for a webinar to introduce you to the new features offered in the Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT) version 3.0 and to answer any questions you might have regarding the updated tool or the larger Climate Ready Water Utilities (CRWU) initiative.

CRWU will offer three webinars, each beginning at 1:00pm (eastern) on:

  • Wednesday, October 19
  • Wednesday, October 26
  • Wednesday, November 2

To reserve a space on your preferred date, go to: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/us-epa-creat-30-update-overview-webinar-registration-27355858108?aff=CRWUnewsletter1

New to the CREAT family?  Click Here to Access CREAT and explore the tool prior to the webinar. The latest version of CREAT is web-based and features a series of easy-to-use modules, a user-friendly interface, updated climate data projections and improved monetized risk results.  For more information on CRWU efforts, please visit www.epa.gov/crwu.

Webinar login and call-in information will be provided after registration.  Any questions can be directed to Zach Rybarczyk at rybarczyk.zachary@epa.gov.

EPA Issues Memo for Renewed Call to Action on Reducing Nutrient Pollution

EPA’s Office of Water released a memo today from Deputy Assistant Administrator Joel Beauvais to all of the State Environmental Commissioners and Water Directors.  The subject of the memo is a “Renewed Call to Action to Reduce Nutrient Pollution and Support for Incremental Actions to Protect Water Quality and Public Health.”  The six-page memo is a follow on to the memo from Nancy Stoner of about five years ago.

In the memo, Beauvais highlights the continued, urgent need for action to reduce this significant threat to water quality and public health; calls upon states and stakeholders to intensify their efforts in collaboration with EPA; and announces $600,000 in additional support for state planning or implementation of watershed-based, multi-stakeholder projects to reduce impacts to public health from nitrates in sources of drinking water and from nitrogen and phosphorus pollution contributing to harmful algal blooms.  Some of the other specific actions in the memo include:

  • Continuing support and financial assistance from EPA;
  • Reducing nutrients from point and nonpoint sources;
  • Prioritizing watersheds and setting load reductions;
  • Strengthening water quality standards;
  • Working with states to highlight high priority incremental actions; and
  • Issuing biennial reports that assess progress and provide accountability.

In closing, the memo says that “EPA looks forward to a dialogue with states on renewed engagement, continued collaboration, and expansion of meaningful partnerships to help us meeting this priority challenge; and to working together to ensure public transparency and accountability in this ongoing effort.”  The full memo is provided here –  attachment-epa-memo-on-nutrient-pollution.

Don’t Forget to Register for the September 27th Learning Exchange Webinar

The Source Water Collaborative will conduct the second webinar in the Learning Exchange webinar series on Tuesday, September 27th from 1:00pm – 2:00pm (eastern time) and will focus on this month’s topic of “Forming and Sustaining Source Water Protection Collaboratives.” You may register for the webinar here. The webinar speakers and topics are as follows:

  • Nicole Zacharda Pertosa will discuss the Great Lakes Commission’s current effort to launch the Great Lakes Source Water Protection Working Group as part of the Blue Accounting Initiative;
  • Kim Swan will present information about coordinating and sustaining the activities of the Clackamas River Water Providers; and
  • Jim Taft of ASDWA will share perspectives and tips from the National Source Water Collaborative.

EPA Awards Funding for Universities to Research Water Quality Benefits

EPA has announced $4.8 million in funding awards for six universities to work with local communities to better understand the economic value of water quality. These research grants will help communities and experts conduct cost-benefit analyses for actions to protect our waterways from contaminants that degrade water quality. This research will also provide a critical link between water quality science and the monetary value of the services that healthy waterways provide, including recreational uses. For more information, visit the EPA website.