WEF's membership newsletter covers current Federation activities, Member Association news, and items of concern to the water quality field. WEF Highlights is your source for the most up-to-the-minute WEF news and member information.

October 2011, Vol. 48, No. 8

Top Story

WEF Staff Member Works To Make a Difference

As advisor to Engineering Students Without Borders group, Barry Liner helps citizens in Peru access clean water

Barry Liner’s commitment to improving access to clean water and proper sanitation goes far beyond his day job. Liner started as director of the Water Environment Federation (WEF; Alexandria, Va.) Water Science and Engineering Center last summer, before he went on a 2-week data-gathering trip for installation of a water storage system in San Isidro, Peru.

Coming to WEF from George Mason University (Fairfax, Va.), Liner maintains an appointment as director of International Engineering Programs in the university’s Department of Civil, Environmental, and Infrastructure Engineering. He also teaches one class as an adjunct professor every year and is faculty advisor for the university’s Engineering Students Without Borders group.

Engineering Students Without Borders was formed about 2 years ago with the mission of designing and implementing infrastructure projects in developing countries. The group identified the San Isidro, a village in the Peruvian Andes that is home to 150 residents, as the site of its first hands-on, real-world project, Liner said. 

Liner-1 Small
Barry Liner (left) talks to the San Isidro, Peru plumber, Vicente Cruz about how to install a new water tank for the community. Photo courtesy of Joanna Vivanco. Click for larger image.
Read more

Prepping the Pipeline

Programs help educate the next generation of operators

Thanks to a less-than-stellar economy, fears about the great “brain drain” within the wastewater treatment industry are not quite as strong as they were 10 years ago. Faced with a more precarious financial future, many wastewater treatment operators who are eligible for retirement have decided to put off leaving the field a bit longer. But eventually they will retire, and a few states and educational institutions have established training programs to help usher in the next generation of operators and fill these job vacancies.

Read more

Water Pollution Control Agency Recognized for Commitment to Environmental Stewardship

MRWPCA - SolarCitySmall

The Monterey (Calif.) Regional Water Pollution Control Agency (MRWPCA) works year-round to demonstrate a commitment to environmental stewardship. Its wastewater treatment facilities have been designed to minimize odors and hydrogen sulfide emissions, and the agency has reduced electricity purchases by using process controls, cogeneration, and solar power generation.  

A view of the solar panel array installed at the Salinas (Calif.) Valley Reclamation Facility. Photo courtesy of Solar City (San Mateo, Calif.). Click for larger image.
Read more

Energy and Water 2011 Conference Generates Enthusiastic Discussion

Professionals and academics from the energy, water, and wastewater industries gathered at Energy and Water 2011: Efficiency, Generation, Management, and Climate Impacts, sponsored by the Water Environment Federation (WEF; Alexandria, Va.), to learn more about the relationship between energy and water and discuss opportunities to better utilize both resources.

Approximately 370 professionals attended the conference, which was held in Chicago, July 31–Aug. 3, and featured three workshops, 20 technical sessions, a table-top exhibition, and an opening general session with keynote speaker Patrick Lucey, senior aquatic ecologist at Aqua-Tex Scientific Consulting Ltd. (Kimberly, British Columbia). 

Read more

WEF MOP Series: Analyzing Overflows and Providing Guidance on Reducing or Eliminating Overflows in MOP FD-17

The Water Environment Federation (WEF; Alexandria, Va.) has updated its Manual of Practice (MOP) that provides information for understanding and analyzing overflow problems and offers guidance on finding the most efficient, feasible, and cost-effective strategies to reduce or eliminate overflows. Prevention and Control of Sewer System Overflows, MOP FD-17, Third Edition,updates the second edition, which was released in 1999.

“The intent of this manual was to provide a much more complete picture of what the mechanisms and drivers are for overflows of any sort, how you can identify them, and ways you can help control them,” said Eric Harold, task force chair for the MOP and principal environmental engineer at Malcolm Pirnie Inc. (White Plains, N.Y.).  

MOP FD-17 Small
Click for larger image.
Read more

NOAA Website Provides Real-Time Information From Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy Systems

Chesapeake Bay Buoy System LogoLearn how to access up-to-date meteorological, oceanographic, and water quality data from this month's online resource, the Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System.
Photo courtesy of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Chesapeake Bay Office.
Read more