Urban Waters Federal Partnership Wins Sammie Award

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Last Week, Surabhi Shah of EPA, and the Urban Waters Federal Partnership team won a 2017 Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal. The medals, known as the “Sammies,” are awarded annually by the Partnership for Public Service. They are designed to highlight excellence in the federal workforce and inspire other talented and dedicated individuals to go into public service. This year, the Urban Waters Federal Partnership got the most votes from the public in the People’s Choice category for their work with local, state and federal agencies, businesses, nonprofits and philanthropies to with local, state and federal agencies, businesses, nonprofits and philanthropies to clean up urban waterways and surrounding lands that help spur redevelopment of abandoned properties, promote new businesses, and provide parks and access for boating, swimming, fishing and community gatherings.

The partnership is led by EPA, along with the Departments of Agriculture, Interior, Housing and Urban Development, and 10 other federal agencies. The program has been successful in leveraging resources for more than 250 locations throughout the US to improve more than 22,000 acres of land and engage approximately 100,000 community members.

For more information about the program, visit the Urban Waters Federal Partnership website. For more information about the award, go HERE.

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Participate in Imagine a Day Without Water on October 12th

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“Imagine a Day Without Water” will take place on October 12th this year. This event is organized by the Value of Water Campaign and urges organizations across the country to engage in and educate their communities about the state of our nation’s infrastructure and the need for reinvestment. One of the most important ways you can participate in Imagine a Day Without Water is by posting on social media. Whether you have an event to promote or just want to show how much you #ValueWater, please share information about this day with your networks. For more information, to use the graphics, and see how you can host a local event and sign up as a partner, visit the website here.

HABHRCA Report Submitted to Congress

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On August 24th, the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) submitted the “Harmful Algal Blooms and Hypoxia Research Plan and Action Strategy: An Interagency Report” to Congress.  The report focuses on the relationships between federal partners and their stakeholders, and the challenges, concerns, and needs related to HABs and hypoxia, and their impact on Great Lakes regional interests and communities.  The report broadly recommends the following:

  • Improving comprehensive conservation planning;
  • Expanding ecological forecasting and modeling for HABs and hypoxia across the Great Lakes;
  • Refining and developing methods for detecting HAB-related toxins found in the Great Lakes;
  • Developing unified messages on the causes, risks, and mitigation efforts on HABs and hypoxia; and
  • Expanding and integrating information on current and potential future social and environmental impacts of HABs and hypoxia in the Great Lakes.

This report is the second step for fulfilling the requirements of the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Act (HABHRCA) legislation after the publication of the February 2016 assessment report.  This new report is attached to this article and will be posted on NOAA’s HABHRCA page in the near future.

AMWA Webinar on Water Utility Resilience Innovations

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The Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies is hosting a free one-hour webinar on water utility resilience as part of its Innovation Series. The series highlights innovations by AMWA members through case studies in resilience and sustainability.

Date:  Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Time:  3:00pm – 4:00 pm (eastern)

Register here

The featured topics of this webinar include:  The Climate Action Plan at Fort Collins Utilities, which addresses energy efficiency and climate resiliency; and Austin Water’s Water Forward planning effort, looking at securing a resilient water supply for the next century.

WRF Webcast on Preparedness and Response for Water System Resilience

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Date:  Thursday, August 17, 2017

Time:  3:00pm – 4:00pm (eastern)

Register HERE

The Water Research Foundation (WRF) will host a free webinar entitled, “Preparedness and Response Practices to Support Water System Resilience: Fundamentals, Good Practices, and Innovations.”  This webcast will discuss the findings of Innovative Preparedness and Response Practices to Support Water System Resilience (#4601). Participants will learn about practices in other sectors that could be used in the water sector, a variety of fundamentals and good practices in use at utilities, as well as some innovative practices to consider.

EPA Webinar on Land Use and Water Resources

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EPA will hold a webinar as part of the Safe and Sustainable Resources Research Program monthly series entitled, “Land Use, Environmental Stressors, and Water Resources: Degradation to Restoration.”

Date:  Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Time:  2:00pm to 3:00pm (eastern)

Register at:  https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/4319992565037855234

During the webinar, presenters will discuss environmental stressors and management practices impacting global water quantity and quality; describe a conceptual framework for understanding and predicting global patterns of water use and water quality degradations; and discuss the role of ecosystem restoration and management in securing and improving water resources and related ecosystem services.

Register Now for the ASDWA CWA-SDWA Webinar: Creative Uses of Clean Water Funding for Drinking Water Benefits

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Date:  Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Time:  1:00 to 2:30pm (eastern), 10:00 to 11:30am (pacific)

REGISTER HERE

On August 29, ASDWA will host a Clean Water Act – Safe Drinking Water Act (CWA-SDWA) webinar entitled, “Creative Uses of Clean Water Funding for Drinking Water Benefits.”  The purpose of the webinar is to build on the efforts of ASDWA, ACWA, GWPC, and EPA to share and promote CWA-SDWA coordination activities across state and EPA water programs.  State, interstate, tribal, and federal water programs, water utilities, technical assistance providers, and anyone else who would like to participate is encouraged to attend.  During the webinar, presenters from the Virginia and Washington Drinking Water Programs and the Skagit Public Utilities District (in WA) will share how they collaborated with their state Clean Water Programs and other partners to creatively use some non-traditional funding routes to benefit their drinking water utilities, including one very small and disadvantaged water system.

Tomorrow! – WRF Webcast on How to Talk about Contaminants, Risk, and the Unknown

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Date:  Thursday, June 22, 2017

Time:  11:00am – 12:30pm (eastern)

REGISTER HERE

The Water Research Foundation (WRF) will host a free webinar tomorrow entitled, “Throwing Precaution Out the Window:  How to Talk about Contaminants, Risk, and the Unknown.”  The webcast will feature a presentation by Dr. Gabriella Rundblad of King’s College London to share the findings of the WRF project (#4551), Terminology for Improved Communications Regarding Contaminants of Emerging Concern.  This project explored how language and cognition impact public trust, where the public is more likely to trust a message about the minute presence of known dangers than the lack of evidence for health effects caused by unknown dangers.

WRF New Cyanotoxin Webcast Series to Start this Month

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The Water Research Foundation will kick off a new series of three webcasts this month to share the latest information and resources about cyanotoxins in drinking water.  All of these webcasts are being offered free of charge and are open to the public.  Following are the webinar topics, descriptions, and registration information.

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Development of a Risk Communication Tool Kit for Cyanotoxins

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

3:00pm – 4:00pm (eastern)

Register Online

This Webcast is designed to provide listeners with the necessary knowledge to develop and deliver effective cyanotoxin risk communications (WRF project #4697). Listeners will learn about specific attributes of the cyanotoxin risk management framework that can create potential communication barriers, for example the complexity of the EPA health guidance and the uncertainty inherent in monitoring and testing timing and protocol. Listeners will also be introduced to the linguistic research carried out during the project, which was used to develop recommended health advisory/alert language.

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Evaluation and Optimization of Cyanotoxin Analytical Methods

Thursday, July 13th, 2017

3:00pm – 4:00pm (eastern)

Register Online

This webcast will explore the results of Performance Evaluation of Methods for the Analysis of Cyanotoxins (project #4647). The goal of this project is to compare the Ohio EPA and U.S. EPA (Method 546) ADDA-ELISA methods and EPA Method 544, “Determination of Microcystins and Nodularin in Drinking Water by Solid Phase Extraction (SPE) and Liquid Chromatography/Tandem Mass Spectrometry (LC/MS/MS)” and investigate the inconsistencies between the methodologies as well as the precision and accuracies within each method. The findings for this project will be published in 2018; however, valuable preliminary findings will be shared during this webcast.

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Treatment Approaches for Managing Dissolved and Intracellular Cyanotoxins

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

3:00pm – 4:00pm (eastern)

Register Online

This webcast will highlight the effectiveness of conventional and advanced treatment processes for managing intracellular and extracellular cyanotoxins while minimizing unintended consequences. In addition, a summary of the Hazen-Adams CyanoTOX model v.2.0 will be presented. Case studies will be used to illustrate how the model worked at various utilities and will be used to provide a basis for evaluating treatment options.

US Water Alliance Publishes Equitable Water Management Paper

US Water Alliance

The US Water Alliance has released a comprehensive briefing paper on the connections between water management and vulnerable communities living in America entitled, “An Equitable Water Future.”  The report demonstrates how water challenges affect affordability, environmental and social justice, economic development, health, safety, and more. These challenges are often felt more acutely by disadvantaged communities, whether by geographic, economic, or racial status. The paper presents a framework that can move the nation forward, focused on three pillars of equitable water management:

  1. Ensure all people have access to clean, safe, affordable water service;
  2. Maximize the community and economic benefits of water infrastructure investment; and,
  3. Foster community resilience in the face of a changing climate.

The entire paper is available online here.  For questions, please contact Abigail Gardner of US Water Alliance at agardner@uswateralliance.org or 412-421-0809.