Streamline - Spring 2013 - (Page 37)

Ergs, Joules & Other for the Stuff Notes on Energy and Other Issues Rural Water Community and Maybe Others BY JOHN E. REGNIER, NRWA 2915 South 13th St., Duncan, OK 73533 Tel. 580.252.0629 Fax. 580.255.4476 America’s Largest Utility Membership Serving Over 26,696 Water and Wastewater Utilities (The nutrient problem) is a wastewater issue and stems from the process set up in the Clean Water Act (CWA) to deal with specific water body pollution been a lot in the regulatory news about the nutrient problem, especially in Florida, but elsewhere also. Consequently, I thought maybe it would be well to look into this issue a bit, especially inasmuch as many of our readers are probably not familiar with it in any detail. LATELY THERE HAS First of all, this is a wastewater issue and stems from the process set up in the Clean Water Act (CWA) to deal with specific water body pollution. Briefly and somewhat over simplified, the process includes: • Defining a designated use or uses for a given water body • Establishing water quality criteria commensurate with that designated use(s) • Measuring attainment or non-attainment of the level of quality specified by the above criteria, and • For cases of non-attainment, specifying corrective action to hopefully bring the water body quality to a level specified by the criteria. This can include establishing a TMDL for that body for a specific element or compound and apportioning this TMDL among the point and nonpoint sources discharged to this water body. The nutrient issue arises in connection with the second bullet above and attained national publicity and prominence when the USEPA as a result of a lawsuit by environmental groups set very stringent nutrient (nitrogen and phosphorus) criteria for many of Florida water bodies. The EPA criteria have been vigorously opposed by numerous groups, especially in Florida, because of the cost and impracticability of meeting the low levels specified, and the latest development in this continuing saga was the acceptance by EPA of a revised set of criteria and approach Proposed by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. Stay tuned for further developments in this controversial issue. The Florida experience is just an example. Charles and Flowers in the January 2012 issue of JAWWA indicate that EPA is on a course to pressure all states to develop numeric nutrient criteria (NNC) rather than narrative criteria. They cite Kentucky, Wisconsin, and Illinois as further examples of the widespread nature of this EPA CWA initiative. These authors suggest that Land Use Planning, Public finance, Legislative Actions, TMDL Implementation, Special Purpose Governments, Pollutant Trading, and Permitting are areas that states need to actively consider in meeting this challenge. Obviously, this discussion barely touches the surface of this important subject. Whether you agree with the cited authors’ analysis or not, there doesn’t seem to be any doubt that the Nutrient Criteria issue is here to stay and states as well as individual systems need to be aggressive in dealing with the problem. This article ran in Energy Plus Newsletter, Volume 5, Issue 2, February 2013. Contact John E. Regnier, NRWA, at or (334) 462-1541. 37

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Streamline - Spring 2013

From the President
From the Executive Director
What If?
Stormwater Management
Soapbox Farewell
Water and Wastewater Certifi cation Exam Test Taking Tips
Past 25 Years of VRWA
Proactive vs. Reactive
Asset Management and Drought Management
Is the Tank Contaminating the Water?
Committed to the Future of Rural Communities
Standard Operating Procedure For Leak Detection Using the Pressure Hold Method
The Virginia RATES Program is at Your Service
Ergs, Joules and Other Stuff
Employee Introductions
VRWA 25th Annual Exposition Agenda
Wastewater Math
eLearning Benefits
Do You Know What Your VRWA Benefi ts Are?
Membership Application
Throwing My Loop
VRWA Mailbag
Welcoming New Members
Training Calendar
Board Of Directors
VRWA Committees
Index To Advertisers/

Streamline - Spring 2013