Nominate Your Water Systems for the AWWA Exemplary Source Water Protection Award

The American Water Works Association (AWWA) is now accepting nominations for its Exemplary Source Water Protection Award.  Each year, AWWA issues up to three awards for water systems of different size classifications based on the population served.  Organizations may self-nominate or be nominated by an AWWA member, state regulatory agency responsible for source water protection, a local chapter of the National Rural Water Association, or regional authorities.

Nominations are judged on how well a water system meets the six components of AWWA’s Source Water Protection Standard (ANSI/AWWA G300-07) for program vision; characterization; goals; action plan; implementation; and evaluation and revision.  The award will also be based on the following three criteria: (1) the effectiveness of the program; (2) the innovativeness of the program approach; and (3) the difficulties overcome by the organization in satisfying the eligibility criteria.  Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the specific criteria for each of the six program components provided in the AWWA Standard. The G300 Standard is available from the AWWA Bookstore.

Nomination packages are due by January 15, 2016.  Water systems can work with their state and AWWA Section to submit nominations, or a water system may self-nominate.  Please pass this information along to others who might be interested in making nominations for the award.  For more information and to download nomination forms, go to AWWA’s web site.

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State Water Agency Climate Practices on EPA Webpage

EPA has launched a new “State Water Agency Practices for Climate Adaptation” webpage.  The seven state practices currently included on the webpage from Colorado, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New Hampshire, and Oregon are the result of a collaborative effort by ASDWA, the Association of Clean Water Administrators (ACWA), the Association of State Wetland Managers (ASWM), and EPA’s Office of Water.  The practices showcase a variety of climate adaptation related practices in several programmatic areas and geographic locations around the country that might serve as models to be replicated in other states.

For more information and to view the practices, visit the EPA website HERE.  If you would like to submit a climate related practice from your state agency to be added, please contact water_climate_change@epa.gov.

November 13th – Fourth CWA-SDWA Toolkit Webinar

This is the final in a series of four webinars conducted through a joint effort of the Association of Clean Water Administrators (ACWA), the Ground Water Protection Council (GWPC), and the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators (ASDWA). This fourth CWA-SDWA Toolkit webinar will provide state, interstate, tribal, and federal water program managers with more detailed information about Section 5 of the Toolkit, on using Nonpoint Source and Clean Water Act 319 Programs s to protect drinking water sources and work across programs to achieve mutual goals.  We hope you will join us and invite your fellow Clean Water Act colleagues to participate with you!  This is a great way to get together with them to start or enhance your working relationship.

The CWA-SDWA Toolkit entitled, “Opportunities to Protect Drinking Water Sources and Advance Watershed Goals through the Clean Water Act: A Toolkit for State, Interstate, Tribal, and Federal Water Program Managers,” was developed by a workgroup that included many state, EPA Headquarters, and EPA Regional representatives from clean water, drinking water, and ground water programs. Next steps beyond these webinars may include collecting and sharing success stories from the states on CWA/SDWA collaborations.

DATE:  Friday, November 13, 2015

TIME:  3:00pm to 4:30pm (eastern time)

How to Connect:  A webinar link and phone line will be sent out the week of the event.

Agenda

  • Welcome Comments: Dan Yates, Ground Water Protection Council
  • Opening Remarks: Cynthia Curtis, USEPA Nonpoint Source Branch
  • State Examples:
    • Mary Ellen Vollbrecht, Wisconsin
    • Joshua Kasper, Delaware
  • Next Steps: Jim Taft, ASDWA, Susan Kirsch, ACWA, Dan Yates, GWPC

Urban Waters Small Grants Program Request for Proposals

EPA is soliciting proposals from eligible applicants for projects that will advance EPA’s water quality and environmental justice goals.  Proposed projects should address urban runoff pollution that address local water quality issues related to urban runoff pollution; provide additional community benefits; actively engage underserved communities; and foster diverse partnerships.

Proposed project activities must be within one of the eligible geographic areas shown on the interactive map at http://www2.epa.gov/urbanwaters/urban-waters-small-grants-mapping.  The total estimated funding for awards under this competition is approximately $1.6 million and will be distributed through the EPA Regional Offices. It is anticipated that each EPA Regional Office will award approximately two to three cooperative agreements ranging from $40,000 to $60,000.  Funding is contingent upon Agency funding levels, the quality of proposals received, and other applicable considerations.

Project proposals are due by November 20, 2015. 

Register HERE for the October 22nd EPA webinar information session about the request for proposals.

For more information and to submit a proposal, visit the Urban Waters web site.

Two New Alternative Water Supply Resources are Now Available

New Guidance for Direct Potable Reuse

A new guidance document, entitled Framework for Direct Potable Reuse, was published on September 14, 2015 by a National Water Research Institute (NWRI) Independent Advisory Panel.  The Framework document was developed to help state regulatory agencies and water utilities develop guidelines for safely converting wastewater into municipal drinking water through the emerging practice of direct potable reuse (DPR). It is the result of a collaborative effort between WateReuse, American Water Works Association, Water Environment Federation, and NWRI.

The Framework document includes information about costs, benefits, energy requirements, and comparative issues with other water sources and measures; and examines three key components of a DPR program that include regulatory considerations (e.g., measures to mitigate public health risks), technical issues related to the production of advanced treated water, and public support and outreach.  For more information and to download the report, go to:  www.watereuse.org.

GWPC Publishes Alternative Water Supplies Chapter in Groundwater Report

The Ground Water Protection Council (GWPC) has published a new chapter (Section 11) on alternative water supplies as part of its Groundwater Report to the Nation…A Call to Action.  The 26 page document includes general information about climate variability and water scarcity; discusses options for using alternative water supplies; shares case studies; and recommends actions for legislation and regulatory programs, education, research, and resource planning.

The chapter includes case studies from Kansas, Oregon, Texas, Hawaii, and Colorado; and covers topics on saline groundwater resources and desalination; hydraulic fracturing impacts on water quantity; stormwater harvesting; aquifer storage and recovery; and water reuse.  Some of the recommended actions at the end of the document include:

  • Congress should support research and development of innovative water conservation and supply augmentation strategies, and fund groundwater-related information collection required to implement national initiatives and legislation (such as the SECURE Water Act).
  • States should consider changes to water laws and practices that allow flexibility for addressing drought or climate impacts, and options for using water recycling to meet competing demands and requirements.
  • States and local governments should implement new stormwater regulations and innovative technologies to address surface water quality problems and prevent contamination of groundwater.
  • EPA and states/tribes should examine and address problems that are preventing the use of aquifer storage and recovery and desalination technology.
  • Education programs should be developed to highlight the value of using alternative water supplies, and provide information to water planners on how to characterize alternative resources; select treatment technologies; and determine costs to produce, develop, and provide delivery infrastructure.
  • USGS and states should continue to develop brackish and saline water resource information.
  • The Bureau of Reclamation, EPA, DOE, and USGS should continue to support research on the benefits and obstacles for implementing wastewater reuse, as well as define and study effects of emerging contaminants on drinking water.
  • States should identify water requirements needed for future growth, and develop integrated growth and water supply impact scenarios.
  • All levels of government should evaluate current and future capacity for using alternative water resources as part of their water management planning process and provide funding to address management at the local level.

For more information on the Groundwater Report to the Nation and to read and download the chapter on alternative water supplies, visit the GWPC web site at: http://www.gwpc.org/ground-water-report-nation.