Archive | March, 2014

USDA Announces New Grants for Funding Water Research

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) will make $6 million in grants available this year, and up to $30 million total over the next five years as part of a new initiative to provide solutions to agricultural water challenges. The grants will be used to develop management practices, technologies, […]

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EPA Requires BMPs in Lieu of Turbidity Limits at Construction Sites

On March 6, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published its final rule on effluent limitations for construction and development, which will go into effect May 5. The rule necessitates the use of best management practices (BMPs) to control stormwater and minimize erosion rather than setting numeric turbidity effluent limits. BMPs include common erosion control […]

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Delaware Governor Announces Clean Water Initiative

In Delaware, 377 water bodies are impaired, and 30 state waterways are not fishable. However, Gov. Jack Markell announced a plan March 4 to pay for stormwater, wastewater and drinking water infrastructure upgrades. The initiative, Clean Water for Delaware’s Future, would impose a “clean water fee” on residential, commercial, and industrial property owners. Over the […]

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State Environment Department Leads Investigation on North Carolina Coal Ash Spill

Duke Energy discovered a coal ash spill Feb. 2 after a 122-cm (48-in) stormwater pipe ruptured beneath a coal ash pond near Eden, North Carolina. The ash ponds are storage lagoons containing a mixture of water and ash, a waste product from coal-burning power plants. The coal ash contains hazardous heavy metals including arsenic, lead, […]

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GAO Releases Report on Flood Insurance Reform

On Feb. 12, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report on extreme weather events and how the Federal government can limit its financial risk, especially in light of climate change. According to the report, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), creates significant “fiscal exposure.” In 2012, […]

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EPA Releases Report on Greening CSO Plans

In early March, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a planning resource to help communities use green infrastructure and quantify its contributions in combined sewer overflow (CSO) plans. The report, Greening CSO Plans: Planning and Modeling Green Infrastructure for Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Control,” discusses various modeling tools that can help communities optimize their […]

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WEF, NACWA and WERF Host Joint National Water Policy Forum and Fly-In

The Water Environment Federation will host the National Water Policy Forum and Fly-In, April 7 through 9 in Washington, D.C., with the Water Environment Research Foundation and the National Association of Clean Water Agencies. The event will be part of World Water Week 2014, which also includes a Water Infrastructure & Innovation Expo hosted by […]

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Draft Chinese Water Plan Focuses on Water Conservation and Pollution Controls

China will focus on water quality, preserving the health of aquatic ecosystems, and protecting drinking water based on a draft Water Pollution Prevention Plan released by China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection in February, Bloomberg BNA reports. China Environmental News indicated that US$329 billion (2 trillion yuan) could be spent implementing measures to improve industrial and […]

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President’s Budget Calls for $1 Billion for Climate Resilience

President Barack Obama announced his 2015 budget on March 4, calling for a $1 billion climate resilience fund. The fund would support adaptation efforts as well as research and technology that improves community preparedness for extreme weather events, such as drought and flooding. According to the White House, the $1 billion price tag is small […]

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California Governor Signs Bill Providing $687 Million for Drought Relief

On March 1, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a $687 million emergency drought relief package following his January declaration of a drought State of Emergency. The package includes $549 million from the accelerated expenditure of voter-approved bonds for infrastructure grants for local and regional projects that are already planned or partially completed. Projects […]

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