Fuel Supply Planning Webinar Features Oregon

 

 

DATE:              June 28, 2018

TIME:               1:00-2:00PM (eastern)

REGISTER:      https://epa-fuel-planning-webinar.eventbrite.com

As a part of its Water and Power Resilience work, the U.S. EPA will be hosting a webinar on Fuel Supply Planning.  A catastrophic earthquake would devastate Oregon’s fuel supply and distribution. Oregon developed a Fuel Action Plan to address how the state would access and distribute fuel during a catastrophic event.

This webinar will provide an overview of Oregon’s Fuel Action Plan as well as Washington County’s corresponding county level plans. These plans address many of the issues that water utilities could face, such as prioritization, distribution, waivers and security, when trying to obtain fuel for generators during a long duration, widespread power outage.

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Two EPA Water Quality Surveillance and Response Systems Webinars

Our colleagues at EPA’s Water Security Division are offering two webinars as part of their monthly series schedule:

Enhanced Security Monitoring

DATE:              May 8, 2018

TIME:               1:00-2:00PM (eastern)

REGISTER:      Click here

This webinar will discuss design considerations for enhancing the security at water distribution system facilities that are at risk of intentional contamination. Topics covered will include methods to prioritize facilities for security enhancements, intrusion detection, video monitoring, and commissioning best practices. The webinar will also discuss the potential role of advanced metering infrastructure in distribution system security.

Online Water Quality Monitoring for Distribution Systems

DATE:              June 5, 2018

TIME:               1:00-2:00PM (eastern)

REGISTER:      Click here

This webinar will discuss design considerations for implementing and operating an online water quality monitoring system that covers a distribution system. It will focus on selection of monitoring locations, selection of parameters to monitor, and information management and analysis. Also, a case study will be presented to show how the Philadelphia Water Department has addressed various design considerations to maximize the benefit provided by their system.

FEMA Funds for Water

In the scramble to find out what funding is available for state drinking water programs from the FY 18 Omnibus Appropriations Act, ASDWA came across some new information about programs managed by FEMA that may have funds available for water utilities and state primacy agencies.

FEMA funding is captured in the Omnibus bill under Division F, Title IV, Protection, Preparedness, Response and Recovery.  In total, FEMA grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements are collectively funded at $3,293,932,000.  Of that amount, the following appropriations are included:

  • $507M for the State Homeland Security Grant Program to assist state, local, tribal, and territorial agencies to obtain the resources required to support implementation of the National Preparedness System (NPS) and the Goal of a secure and resilient Nation.
  • $630M for the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) Grant Program to address the unique multi-discipline planning, organization, equipment, training, and exercise needs of high-threat, high-density Urban Areas.
  • $350M for the Emergency Management Performance Grant Program for states to assist state, local, territorial, and tribal governments in preparing for all hazards, as authorized by the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act and Section 662 of the Post Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006.
  • $249M for the National Pre-Disaster Mitigation Fund to assist states, tribes, and territories to reduce overall risk to the population and structures from future hazard events, while also reducing reliance on Federal funding in future disasters. This program awards planning and project grants and provides opportunities for raising public awareness about reducing future losses before disaster strikes.
  • $275M for Current Operations to sustain training, exercises, technical assistance and other programs.

You are encouraged to collaborate with your state’s emergency management agency to determine how best to take advantage of these programs and opportunities.

 

EPA WSD Offers Three Different Decon Opportunities

For Water Utilities – May 7:

EPA’s Water Security Division will be conducting a half-day Workshop on the Decontamination Preparedness and Assessment Strategy for Water Utilities on May 7 at the at the EPA’s Research Triangle Park Campus, North Carolina. The workshop will focus on understanding the three phases of remediation (Characterization, Decontamination and Clearance) prior to a contamination event. The workshop includes interactive discussions that examine the simulated effect of a chemical release at drinking water and wastewater utilities of a fictitious community.

At the end of the workshop, participants will:

  • Understand and become familiar with the steps of the remediation process.
  • Identify utility-specific actions to be taken prior to an incident.
  • Understand and know where to locate other resources and tools that may be helpful to prepare for and respond to an incident.
  • Be aware of public health and environmental safety considerations that apply to each phase of remediation.

For States and Water Utilities – May 7:

EPA’s Office of Research and Development (ORD) will be conducting a panel discussion after the above workshop to introduce a State/Local Engagement Plan focusing on management of emergency contamination incidents regardless of cause. ORD is seeking feedback from state and local organizations, water utilities, and authorities on how best to optimize interactions.

For both the Workshop and Panel discussion, participants must RSVP by April 20 at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2018-epa-international-decontamination-conference-water-utility-workshop-tickets-44158809187

For questions about this workshop, please contact Marissa Lynch at lynch.marissa@epa.gov. For more information about the panel discussion, please contact plotkin.viktoriya@epa.gov.

For States, Utilities and Researchers – May 8-10

EPA’s Office of Research and Development’s National Homeland Security Research Center (NHSRC) will be hosting their 10th International Conference on Decontamination Research and Development held at the EPA’s Research Triangle Park Campus, North Carolina, May 8-10. The conference is designed to facilitate presentation, discussion, and further collaboration on research and development focused on an all-hazards approach to cleaning up contaminated buildings (both interior and exterior), infrastructure, and other areas/materials. The conference continues to focus strongly on matters involving CBR threat agents, but also includes all hazard elements.

Topics for this conference include:

  • New chemical, biological, and radiological (CBR) detection and decontamination research data or field activities and large scale demonstrations related to the detection and decontamination of biological (including agricultural threat agents and biotoxins), chemical, and radiological threat agents in indoor (in facilities) or outdoor areas/materials;
  • Cross-cutting topics related to restoration, including: clean-up levels/risk assessment, exposure assessment, sampling/analysis of threat agents, fate/transport/containment, material compatibility with decontamination processes, tool and guidance development, waste management of threat agent-contaminated materials, water/wastewater decontamination, and systems approach to response and regulatory issues;
  • Regional, state, and local initiatives highlighting local priorities, challenges, and science and technology developments related to response and recovery efforts from intentional or accidental environmental incidents; and
  • Special topics: new to this year’s conference is the introduction of a special topics category. These topics will address emerging issues as identified by the conference committee. This year’s special topics are:
    • Emerging threats: work addressing emerging threats (e.g., fentanyl, drug lab cleanup, etc.);
    • Recent disaster response: examples of work supporting large-scale natural disaster response efforts;
    • Research to response: best practices for bridging the gap between R&D and field operations; and
    • All Hazards Remediation (non-CBR): remediation efforts related to a variety of disasters/incidents outside of core homeland security responsibilities

Participant attending the decontamination workshop on May 7 are welcome to attend the 2018 EPA International Decontamination Research and Development Conference. Participants can register for the conference at this link: https://www.epa.gov/homeland-security-research/2018-epa-international-decontamination-research-and-development

For questions about the conference, please contact Susan Blaine at 703-225-2471 or EPA_Decon@icf.com

Two New WSD Webinars

EPA’s Water Security Division is hosting two new webinars as part of their Water Quality Surveillance and Response Webinar Series.  See below for details.

  1. Risk of Drinking Water Contamination and Actions to Prepare

DATE:              March 20, 2018

TIME:               1:00-2:00PM (eastern)

REGISTER:      Click here

This webinar focuses on:

  • The risk of drinking water contamination through case studies of real world incidents
  • How readily available data can be used to detect a wide range of water quality problems
  • How response planning can help to effectively manage a water contamination incident

  1. Online Water Quality Monitoring for Source Waters

DATE:    April 10, 2018

TIME:    1:00-2:00PM (eastern)

REGISTER:  Click here

This webinar focuses on:

  • How West Virginia American Water designed an effective source water monitoring system
  • Common design considerations for implementing an online water quality monitoring system
  • How to select monitoring locations and parameters to meet utility unique monitoring goals

Different approaches to information management and data analysis

EPA WSD Offers Training Opportunities

Water/Wastewater Boot Camp Training!

EPA just updated the Water/Wastewater All-Hazards Boot Camp computer training. The self-paced training teaches utilities to incorporate emergency management activities into their programs and build resilience to all hazards. The updated release includes the latest tools and resources from EPA and other Water Sector partners.  Click here to start the training!

 

Analytical Preparedness Full-Scale Exercise (AP-FSE) Toolkit Training

March 29, 2018 at 1:00 PM, eastern  Register Here

This training will cover how participating in a full-scale exercise can increase preparedness, how the toolkit and its resources can be leveraged to plan and conduct an exercise, and how to coordinate analytical support and further develop relationships with response partners.

 

Sampling Guidance for Unknown Contaminants

April 26, 2018 at 1:00 PM, eastern  Register Here

Participants will learn how to use WLA’s Sampling Guidance for Unknown Contaminants by examining the collection of unknown samples in response to a drinking water contamination incident. Training is intended for drinking water utilities, state and local governments, emergency responders and laboratory personnel.

 

UNC-EFC Tackles Financial Resilience

The Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Caroline, Chapel Hill hosts a blog site that looks at water and wastewater needs, issues, concerns, and successes. One of their most recent posts looks at Local Government Financial Resilience and Preparation Before a Natural Disaster.

As the blog post notes, “…municipalities are becoming extremely vulnerable to natural disasters, making it necessary for local governments to become more resilient to catastrophes. Natural disaster resiliency often focuses on the built environment and hazard mitigation, but what about weathering the storm from a financial perspective?”  It goes on to suggest that communities should consider the following steps when evaluating the potential financial impacts of a natural disaster:  identify the probability and type of likely disasters, set a planning timeline, know about available funding sources, and set up a rainy day fund.

The blog post also contains numerous links to resources that can help a community understand and plan financially for a disaster.  One that stands out is Financial Planning for Natural Disasters: A Workbook for Local Governments and Regions.  The Workbook “…is designed to help local governments and regions understand their financial vulnerabilities to natural disasters, evaluate their financial capacity to cover the costs of those disasters, identify strategies to close the gap between financial vulnerability and capacity, and identify and address the spillover effects of neighboring local governments’ financial vulnerabilities to disasters.”

Do You Know About VSAT Web 1.0?

Last Fall, EPA’s Water Security Division released a web-enabled version of the Water or Wastewater Utility Vulnerability Self-Assessment Tool (VSAT).  The new VSAT model is also more appropriate for smaller systems.  Simply, VSAT Web is a user-friendly tool that can help drinking water and wastewater utilities of all sizes to enhance their security and resiliency.

With VSAT Web, a utility can:

  • Identify the highest risks to mission-critical operations and
  • Find the most cost-effective measures to reduce those risks

Additional Highlights of VSAT Web Include:

  • Designed for mobile devices like tablets and iPads, as well as personal computers
  • Runs on most Internet browsers.
  • No VSAT Web user data is stored by or visible to EPA
  • Complies with risk assessment standards, and
  • Offers liability protection under the Department of Homeland Security’s Support Anti-Terrorism by Fostering Effective Technologies (SAFETY) Act program.

Click Open VSAT Web 1.0 to view the document.  ASDWA encourages you to share this information with your water systems to make sure they have access to the most recent risk assessment tools!

 

EPA WSD Offers Webinars, Workshops, and Requests for Input

Below are some upcoming resilience opportunities available to state drinking water programs as well as water and wastewater utilities. Please share these opportunities.

Webinars and Workshop 

Water Contaminant Information Tool (WCIT) Training

February 22, 2018 at 11:00 AM ET

 

This training is designed to introduce and refresh users on WCIT, a secure on-line database with comprehensive information about chemical, biological and radiochemical contaminants of concern. The training will include step-by-step instructions for tool functions such as contaminant search, finding and accessing field and confirmatory methods and generating public information reports: https://usepa-wcit-training.eventbrite.com

Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) Template Training

February 28, 2018 at 1:00 PM ET

It is imperative that laboratories be able to continue their essential functions when incidents occur that disrupt normal operations. This webinar is designed as an introduction to the WLA COOP template, providing a basic overview of the COOP template contents and a demonstration on how to use the template’s fillable form:  https://us-epa-wla-coop.eventbrite.com

 

Nevada Water and Emergency Services Sectors Coordination Workshop

March 13, 2018

Las Vegas, Nevada

The U.S. EPA Water Security Division and the Las Vegas Valley Water District will be hosting a Water and Emergency Services Sectors Coordination workshop on March 13, 2018. The free one-day workshop will include presentations from drinking water and wastewater utilities, as well as local, state and federal emergency response and law enforcement agencies.  It will also include a tabletop exercise involving a possible intentional water contamination incident that impacts water and wastewater services, law enforcement, local emergency management, public health, and local hospitals. The workshop aims to increase coordination and communication between water utilities, emergency management, and law enforcement.  It will also provide law enforcement personnel with a better understanding of water system infrastructure and operations.

The target audience is:

  • Drinking water and wastewater utilities
  • Local, state, and federal law enforcement departments and agencies
  • Local, state, and federal emergency management agencies

To register, please visit:  https://epa-nv-water-ess-workshop.eventbrite.com

 

Requesting Partners Input

Water and Healthcare/Public Health Workshop.  The U.S. EPA Water Security Division plans to conduct a workshop in the western U.S. and is seeking interested stakeholders in the area.  The one-day workshop will comprise presentations discussing cross-sector communication between the local area water utility and healthcare/public health entities.  A water loss scenario in the afternoon provides the opportunity to discuss improvement to existing communication protocols between the water and health sectors. For more information, please contact Chrissy Dangel, 513-569-7821).

Water Sector Power Resilience Summit – To be held in September 2018

EPA plans to partner with water associations, state agencies, water utilities, energy providers, energy associations and other key partners to host a two-day Water Sector Power Resilience Summit.  The objective of the summit is to discuss and advance the water sector’s preparedness for a long-duration, widespread power outage.  We are still in the early planning stages, but plan to host an event for 150-250 people in the DC-area in September 2018.  We are looking for volunteers to participate in a summit planning team that will help to develop the summit agenda, identify potential speakers, and share information about the summit to water sector stakeholders.  We anticipate that volunteers would participate in approximately six one-hour teleconferences between January and September 2018 and spend several hours reviewing documents or completing action items from the teleconferences during that eight-month time period.  For more information, please contact Lauren Wisniewski 202-564-2918.

 

 

Upcoming Decon R&D Conference

EPA is hosting the 2017 International Decontamination Research and Development Conference (May 8-10, 2018 at the US EPA Campus in Research Triangle Park, NC).  While the larger Conference focuses on R&D for a range of chemical, biological, and radiological contamination incidents; this year, there will be a particular emphasis on the Decontamination Preparedness and Assessment Strategy (DPAS) and its Preparedness Checklist.

During the Conference, participants will be able to start the planning process and to identify what they need to do when they return home. Each attendee could complete the Preparedness Checklist and other worksheets using a real-world system that they have knowledge of as either an operator, TA provider or consultant. An example utility will also be described that can be used to review the strategy.

For more information about the Conference, please review the proceedings from the 2016 event at this link 2016 DECON CONFERENCE REPORT

If you are interested in participating in this Conference, please contact Marissa Lynch Lynch.Marissa@epa.gov at EPA’s Water Security Division.