The Water Environment Federation’s (WEF) Stormwater Institute (SWI) reports on challenges and the annual funding gap for the municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) sector.
To crib from an old commercial and tagline made famous by a certain stock brokerage firm, "When Reese Tisdale talks, people listen." That's because Reese is the president of Bluefield Research, a highly respected advisory firm that helps companies and organizations, including municipalities, address the regulatory, technology, business, and competitive trends impacting water.
It can be hard to go it alone, especially when times get tough. Many utilities are seeking support, as they deal with failing infrastructure, escalating contamination threats, extreme weather, and a retiring, difficult-to-replace workforce. These challenges could be overcome with a full set of resources — money, people, equipment, expertise — but many utilities, especially small-community systems, are not so complete.
With the proliferation of new sensors and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) initiatives now feeding SCADA systems, water industry managers lament how they are drowning in a sea of data yet starving for insights that really matter. With concepts like data democratization starting to bear fruit, advanced analytical capabilities are creating new opportunities for water insights without requiring a degree in computer science.
Understaffing, upcoming retirements, and finding qualified replacements seem to be recurring themes in the water industry. Perhaps the answers are as much about the tools we use as the people using them. Here is how a new approach to utility data management can capture the knowledge of retiring workers, share the insight across all disciplines, and shore up the skills and interests of the next generation.
In many water industry applications, a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system is considered the heartbeat of the operation. As a result, many data management decisions revolve around what the SCADA system can or cannot do and how big of a deal and expense it is to change. Can’t there be a way to devise more ROI-responsive data solutions, without having to change SCADA solutions?
Texas is sizable enough to be a large country on its own, with an economy to match, and is also proudly unique. But when it comes to water issues, the Lone Star State shares a lot in common with the rest of America: overwhelmed and vulnerable infrastructure, threats to water quality and security, and competition for resources.
Environmental Impact Bonds, EIBs, are a market-based option that leverage private capital, typically from impact investors, to finance infrastructure. They typically use pay-for-performance, and are rapidly traction in green stormwater infrastructure and climate resiliency initiatives.
Recently, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced two Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loans-one to Tualatin Valley Water District (TVWD) and the other to the City of Hillsboro (COH)-marking the first time that WIFIA has provided financing for two individual borrowers partnering on a joint project.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Puerto Rico Aqueduct and Sewer Authority (PRASA) announced the restructuring of more than 200 delinquent loans—totaling approximately $571M in principal—owed to Puerto Rico’s clean water and drinking water State Revolving Fund (SRF) programs.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Utilities Service Administrator Chad Rupe recently announced that USDA is investing $135M in 49 projects to improve rural water infrastructure in 24 states (PDF, 170 KB).
U.S. municipal water & wastewater utility bills increased 3.6% over the last year, according to a new U.S. Municipal Water & Wastewater Utility Bill Index from Bluefield Research.
Brown and Caldwell, a leading environmental engineering and construction firm, today announced the expansion of its integrated project delivery team as Dan Augusti joins the firm as senior director, client services.
Edinburgh based water retailer Business Stream has generated over £250M in new contract wins in the two years since the English retail water market opened in April 2017.
U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris (D-CA) on Monday announced the Water Justice Act, landmark legislation to ensure that the nation’s water supply is safe, affordable, and sustainable. To address the ongoing drinking water crisis in the country, the comprehensive legislation would immediately invest in communities and schools to test for and remove contaminants in water, including replacing toxic lead service lines.
Ofwat has recently set out a major package of investment to signal a new era for what the water sector delivers for customers and the environment.
In response to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) third Notice of Funding Availability, the agency received 51 letters of interest, collectively requesting $6.6B in Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) funding.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a $218M Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loan to Silicon Valley Clean Water (SVCW) to finance wastewater infrastructure upgrades that will protect public health and the San Francisco Bay.
Wastewater plants treat effluent with chlorine as a final disinfection measure prior to its discharge into the environment. While this should be straightforward, there are still a significant number of small water systems facing big problems because they don’t have a solid grasp on the process. The good news is that a modern, cost-effective solution is available.
Are your current pressure-boosting pumps the best design for your operating conditions? Are they maximizing value from your operating budget with peak efficiency? How can you know for sure, and what can you do if they are not? Here are some guidelines for evaluating performance efficiency in pressure-boosting applications and for choosing the best pump configurations for new or existing applications.
Electromagnetic meters (mag meters) are well established in terms of highly accurate performance for a variety of municipal and industrial water applications. Differences in their construction formats, however, dictate how easy they can be to install, maintain, and calibrate. Compare these three options to see the value of full-profile-insertion (FPI) mag meters and their associated advantages in real-world use.
When it comes to metering water flow — drinking water or wastewater — full-bore mag meters offer many advantages. While the underlying technology based on Faraday’s Law of electromagnetic induction is shared among all styles of full-bore mag meters, specific implementations have impacts on longevity and accuracy. Here is what to look for when the time to choose arrives.
Among utilities concerned about resilience and response in natural disasters or other emergencies, precise asset inventory and mapping are high priorities. In truth, there is value in having the same information for everyday purposes as well. For anyone who has ever had a problem locating or tracking key water or wastewater system assets, here are several good reasons and ways to avoid a last-minute scramble.
If a water utility is going to use digital communication to enhance the customer experience, it needs to ensure that it does so as seamlessly as possible.