Quarterly Newsletter – EPA Water Security Division

Our EPA colleagues have several interactive opportunities that you may be interested in:

  1. Hurricane – Be Ready!

EPA has developed tools to help water utilities prepare for, respond to, and recover from hurricane-related impacts. Check out our incident action checklist and other free resources…and remember to heed watches and warnings issued by your local National Weather Service forecast office.  Want to know more?  Click here

  1. Water Sector Power and Black Sky Resilience Summit

On September 19, EPA is hosting a one-day Water Sector Power and Black Sky Resilience Summit in Herndon, VA to discuss and advance the water sector’s preparedness for a long duration, widespread power outage.

There will be presentations and discussions on black sky threats, generators, alternative power options, microgrids, critical interdependencies, and communications. The focus will be on some of the challenges and potential solutions to a long duration power outage. The target audience is drinking water and wastewater utilities, water and energy associations, electric utilities, and local, state, and federal government agencies. To participate in person Register Here  If you are outside the DC metropolitan area and are interested in participating in a webcast of the event, please send an email to Lauren Wisniewski at wisniewski.lauren@epa.gov.

  1. Webinar – Customer Complaint Surveillance for Detecting Drinking Water Contamination

DATE:              September 11, 2018

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

REGISTRATION:  Register Here

This webinar will describe how water quality complaints from customers can be analyzed in real time to detect emerging water quality problems. It will describe methods and tools that can be used to analyze historical data to set thresholds that minimize the frequency of invalid alerts without compromising detection capabilities.

  1. Webinar – Public Health Surveillance for Detecting Drinking Water Contamination

 DATE:              October 9, 2018

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

REGISTRATION:           Register Here

This webinar will discuss the role that public health partners can play in detecting and responding to drinking water contamination incidents.  It will provide an overview of common public health partners as well as the types of surveillance they perform.  Examples of the application of public health surveillance to monitor for water contamination incidents will be presented.  There will also be a discussion of roles and responsibilities during a joint water utility/public health agency investigation of possible water contamination.

  1. Webinar – Response Planning for Distribution System Contamination Incidents

 DATE:              November 6, 2018

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

REGISTRATION:           Register Here

This webinar will provide an overview of the response to a distribution system contamination incident and the steps utilities can take to prepare their own response procedure. It will cover roles and responsibilities when working with response partners. The webinar will also discuss possible response actions that can be implemented to minimize consequences, such as operational changes to reduce the spread of contaminated water and public notification to minimize customers’ exposure to contaminated water.

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AWWA Offers Emergency Preparedness & Response Video DVD

Our colleagues at AWWA have developed a DVD/video that covers key emergency preparedness requirements to help water utilities establish an acceptable level of emergency preparedness based on both identified and perceived risks.  It steps you through eight basic activities that include elements ranging from commitment to preparedness to risk assessments to training and partnerships.

This link takes you to the AWWA webpage that offers a preview of the video, information about its content, and an order form.  The cost is $199 (for AWWA members) and $285 for others.  States may find this useful as a training tool.

 

EPA WSD to Host ‘Analysis of Online Water Quality Data’ Webinar

Registration is now available for the next webinar in the “Water Quality Surveillance and Response” series hosted by EPA’s Water Security Division.

DATE:              August 14, 2018

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

REGISTER:      Click here

Two presentations will be offered during the web event.  The first will describe methods for conducting an exploratory analysis of historical water quality data collected from a water distribution system using online monitoring instruments. The second will describe how source water constituents of concern can be estimated in near-real-time using continuous water-quality data.  Representatives from EPA and USGS will lead the discussions.

This flyer contains more information about the event and the presentations.  SRS Webinar Series_August Webinar_Email Flyer 07052018

Free Water Security Webinars

EPA’s Water Security Division has scheduled several webinar information and training events during July and August.  There’s also an invitation to participate in a September Power and Resilience Black Sky Summit.  For more information, please read on.

Communication Systems for Smart Utility Infrastructure

DATE:              July 17, 2018

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

REGISTER:      Click here

This webinar will discuss considerations for evaluating and selecting data communications systems that meet the unique requirements of smart utility infrastructure, including remote water quality and security monitoring equipment. Also, the Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati will present a case study about its smart sewer network.

Air Regulations for Generators at Water Utilities

DATE:              July 25, 2018

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

REGISTER:      Click here

This webinar will provide an overview of the air regulations for stationary generators including the New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) and the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for Reciprocating Internal Combustion Engines (RICE).  It will outline the requirements for a water utility purchasing new diesel generators.  The presentation will also compare the requirements for emergency generators with the requirements for generators used for demand response/peak shaving. You will hear from speakers such as Melanie King, EPA Office of Air and Radiation and Sara Ayres, EPA Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance.

Puerto Rico Water and Sewer Authority’s Response to Hurricane Maria Webinar

DATE:              August 8, 2018

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

REGISTER:      Click here

Eli Diaz-Atienza, President of Puerto Rico’s Water and Sewer Authority (PRASA) will describe how the utility was impacted by the loss of power caused by Hurricane Maria.  At its peak, PRASA was utilizing 1610 generators at its 114 drinking water plants, 51 wastewater plants, and pump stations.  This presentation will discuss some of the challenges with operating, maintaining, and fueling the generators.  It will also summarize some of the lessons learned and plans for increasing its resilience.

Free Power and Black Sky Resilience Summit

Water Sector Power and Black Sky Resilience Summit (September 19, 2018 in Herndon, VA)

EPA is hosting a one-day Water Sector Power and Black Sky Resilience Summit to discuss and advance the water sector’s preparedness for a long duration, widespread power outage. There will be presentations and discussions on black sky threats, generators, alternative power options (e.g., combined heat and power, solar), critical interdependencies, and communications. The focus will be on some of the challenges and potential solutions to a long duration power outage.  The target audience is drinking water and wastewater utilities, water and energy associations, electric utilities, and local, state, and federal government agencies.  Register at: https://epa-black-sky-summit.eventbrite.com

EPA WSD Hosts a Variety of Web Events in June

Our colleagues in EPA’s Water Security Division offer three interesting opportunities for states and utilities to learn about water quality monitoring, field responses for contamination incidents, and fuel supply planning:

Online Water Quality Monitoring for Distribution Systems

This is part of the ongoing Water Quality Surveillance and Response Webinar Series.

DATE:              June 5, 2018

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

REGISTER:      Here

This event will discuss design considerations to implement and operate an online water quality monitoring system for a distribution system.  The focus will be on monitoring location selection, monitoring parameters, and information management and analysis.

Field Response Planning for Drinking Water Contamination Emergency

DATE:              June 14, 2018

TIME:               2:00-3:00PM (eastern)

REGISTER:      Here

Learn how to prepare for basic and advanced field response activities; the hazard decision points in the field response process; how to document field information and findings using provided templates and forms; and where to find additional resources for planning and training.

Fuel Supply Planning

DATE:              June 28, 2018

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

REGISTER:      Here

Hear how Oregon developed a Fuel Action Plan to mitigate the impact of a catastrophic earthquake that would devastate Oregon’s fuel supply and distribution capability.  Issues such as prioritization, distribution, waivers and security when trying to obtain fuel for generators during a long duration, widespread power outage will be addressed.

Making Critical Connections

State primacy agencies may recall that EPA and ASDWA worked together several years ago to develop a document called Bridging the Gap:  Coordination between State Primacy Agencies and State Emergency Management Agencies as a way to begin to have those critical conversations before an emergency takes place.

EPA’s Water Security Division has just published a new document to help water utilities and emergency management agencies make those same important connections and have those same important conversations.  Connecting Water Utilities and Emergency Management Agencies summarizes some best practices on how water utilities and emergency management agencies can increase their coordination. Through joint exercises, coordinated planning, and other activities, water utilities and emergency management agencies can more effectively respond to emergencies and improve their communication with the public.  This document also includes examples of cross-sector coordination.

Please share this information with your water utilities.

The March ORD Monthly Webinar Series Features Water Security & Resiliency

DATE:              Tuesday, March 27

TIME:               2:00-3:00PM (eastern)

REGISTER:      Click here

In this webinar, EPA’s Office of Research and Development is exploring two aspects of water security and resilience – improving emergency response through the Water Lab Alliance (WLA) and sampling and analysis tools for water emergencies.

The Water Lab Alliance presentation will provide an overview of WLA, highlighting several of its available tools and resources that systems – including small systems – can use to improve emergency response.

The Sampling and Analysis Tools presentation will describe sampling and analysis tools that EPA provides to water utilities for improving drinking water and wastewater system resilience to disasters and to quickly recover from chem/bio/rad agents.

Please share this invitation with your state’s water systems and those in your program with an interest in security and resilience.

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.

 

EPA WSD Shares New Resource

Customer Complaint Surveillance (CCS) Resources:  Guidance and instructional videos for CCS are now available from EPA’s Water Security Division by clicking here.  “Designing Customer Complaint Surveillance for Water Quality Surveillance and Response Systems” provides guidance for designing a system to analyze customer complaints to detect water quality problems (e.g. taste, odor or appearance complaints).  The 48 page document contains several embedded forms, templates, and examples (to view these materials, you must first download the PDF version of document).  The “Instructional Videos on Customer Complaint Surveillance Tools” provide an overview and training on how to use two previously published tools, the Alarm Estimation Tool and the Threshold Analysis Tool.  Both are designed to help utilities analyze drinking water complaint data.  The videos range in viewing time from 5-9 minutes (total viewing time for all six videos is less than 40 min).