Texas lawmakers prepare to set aside billions to upgrade state’s aging water system

(UI) — A critical first step was made on March 20 toward advancing legislation that may rebuild Texas' deteriorating water infrastructure and develop new water sources for the state's expanding population. The proposed bills would establish a new Water Supply for Texas Fund, which the Texas Water Development Board would run, to pay for infrastructure improvements and new water projects.

Tech Tips: Understanding and using ASTM standards in your specifications

(UI) — Nearly every municipal project specification contains a reference section detailing a variety of ASTM standards that are critical to the material performance, installation performance, and quality control of most products and projects. To many in the engineering field, this list of references can be somewhat confusing and require detailed understanding to make sure one is using the correct standard for the product or process that is being specified.

Burleigh County will require permits for pipeline set to store carbon underground

County commissioners voted 4-0 Monday night with one member absent to approve the proposal. Commissioners, however, acknowledged the ordinance is likely to draw a lawsuit from carbon-capture pipeline developer Summit Carbon Solutions, the Bismarck Tribune reported.

FERC Moves Forward Tentatively on Pipeline Rates, Affiliates

A blog post from the law firm Akin Gump stated: “FERC policy often uses the ‘last litigated ROE’ as a proxy for just and reasonable rates when it is developing initial rates for existing facilities being acquired by a new pipeline.

EPA to limit toxic ‘forever chemicals’ in drinking water

The Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday proposed the first federal limits on harmful “forever chemicals” in drinking water, a long-awaited protection the agency said will save thousands of lives and prevent serious illnesses, including cancer.

Las Vegas water agency seeks power to limit residential use

State lawmakers on Monday are scheduled to discuss granting the power to limit what comes out of residents’ taps to the Southern Nevada Water Authority, the agency managing the Colorado River supply to the city. If lawmakers approve the bill, Nevada would be the first state to give a water agency permanent jurisdiction over the amount of residential use.

Mississippi lawmakers stop effort to take over Jackson water

Mississippi lawmakers are giving up on an effort to create a state-dominated board to oversee the troubled water system in the state’s capital city.

House GOP votes to overturn Biden administration’s water protection rule

House Republicans used the Congressional Review Act, which allows Congress to block recently enacted executive-branch regulations. The measure now heads to the Senate, where Republicans hope to attract Democratic senators wary of Biden’s environmental policies.

Alabama to spend $400 million in funding on water, sewer infrastructure; $260 million on broadband

Alabama will spend the remaining $1 billion of its pandemic relief funds largely on a mixture of water and sewer infrastructure, broadband expansion and healthcare reimbursements, under a bill introduced Wednesday.

Construction entities call for punishment for pipeline attacks, improved mapping in pipeline safety

(UI) — The Distribution Contractors Association (DCA) and the United Association of Union Plumbers and Pipefitters (UA) have published a letter urging Congress to take action to address the enduring problem of physical attacks on critical energy infrastructure.

EPA rejects Texas claim that new water rule leads to “regulatory uncertainty”

“Plaintiffs’ claims of harm are premised on either a complete disregard for the Rule’s similarity to the status quo they seek to maintain,” the Environmental Protection Agency said.

Groups accuse Alabama of discrimination in wastewater funds

Environmental organizations filed a civil rights complaint against Alabama on Monday, accusing the state of discriminating against minority communities in how it distributes funding for wastewater infrastructure, including money for families who need help dealing with raw sewage in their yards.

Biden administration to require states report on water system cybersecurity threats

The Environmental Protection Agency said public water systems are increasingly at risk from cyberattacks that amount to a threat to public health.

Communities await first US limits on ‘forever chemicals’ in drinking water

The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to propose restrictions on harmful “forever chemicals” in drinking water after finding they are dangerous in amounts so small as to be undetectable. But experts say removing them will cost billions, a burden that will fall hardest on small communities with few resources.

U.S. appeals court re-establishes Trump-era water rule, energy industry celebrates

The Trump-era rule reinterprets part of the Clean Water Act that allows states and Native American tribes authority to deny approvals for interstate pipelines and other projects that pollute waterways in their areas. The new rule keeps states from blocking such projects unless they can prove the projects will directly pollute their waterways.

Ayyeka introduces new sewer overflow data management technology

(UI) — Ayyeka’s latest product, Storm Scope, addresses the endless issues connected to combined sewer overflow data management. The Storm Scope software platform collects and organizes data from remote locations, transforming distant landscapes into manageable assets.

Inside Infrastructure: After Surprising Election, Chaotic Start, 118th Congress Begins Its Work

(UI) — Comprehensive reforms to the permitting process for energy projects remains a priority for any entity interested in initiating projects to improve America’s dilapidated underground infrastructure. This has become a bipartisan issue after a $1.2-trillion-dollar infrastructure bill was enacted and getting projects off the ground was in the best interest of the White House and every lawmaker who voted for the IIJA.

Scottsdale weighs sharing water again with nearby community

Scottsdale will consider a joint plan with Maricopa County that would supply water again to a community that had its access cut off. The Scottsdale City Council is scheduled to meet Feb. 21 about a potential new agreement to re-open a supply of water for nearby unincorporated Rio Verde Foothills.

Vermont’s wastewater infrastructure deemed “poor” by engineering group

(UI) — The Vermont section of the American Society of Civil Engineers released the 2023 Report Card for Vermont’s Infrastructure on Feb. 16, in which the state’s wastewater infrastructure received a grade of “D+.” Likewise, Vermont's drinking water and stormwater infrastructure received “C” scores. According to the report, a C is considered “mediocre,” while a D is “poor.”

West Virginia drinking water still clear of derailment toxin

West Virginia officials have reiterated that the state's drinking water remains safe following an Ohio train derailment that led to a toxic plume of chemicals being released. Chemicals that leaked from the derailment are being monitored as they move down the Ohio River, but they are not affecting the supply of drinking water, officials said during a briefing Thursday.

Former Maui official gets 10 years for taking $2 million in wastewater contract bribes

A former Maui County official was sentenced Wednesday to 10 years in prison for accepting $2 million in bribes from a Honolulu businessman in one of the biggest bribery cases in Hawaii history. Milton Choy, the owner of a Honolulu company that provides wastewater services and supplies, was accused of bribing Stewart Olani Stant, who was a wastewater manager and then director of the Maui County Department of Environmental Management.

Editor’s Log: Stampede

(UI) — The President Biden Administration’s narrative has been to mercilessly shun, blame and attack “big-oil” companies, gas companies and any pipeline ever built as the root of environmental evil. The President has used his bully pulpit to supplement his unending rules and regulations against oil and gas, as the way to achieve the “carbon-free” goal of his zealous backers.

West Virginia regulators deny 12% electric utility rate increase request

West Virginia regulators have denied a request by Appalachian Power and Wheeling Power that would have added $18.41 to the average monthly residential electric bill.

Interior: $580 million headed to 15 tribes to fulfill water rights

Fifteen Native American tribes will get a total of $580 million in federal money to pay for pipelines, pumping stations, and canals to help deliver water to the tribe's reservations.

Texas lawmakers to push water infrastructure upgrades to forefront of legislative agenda

(UI) — For the upcoming fiscal year, Texas is anticipated to have a record surplus. Now, a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers is hoping to direct some of that money toward much-needed renovations to the state's water infrastructure.

Updated ASCE manhole guidelines focus on inspection, rehabilitation methods

(UI) — ASCE’s Manual of Practice, Manhole Inspection and Rehabilitation, Third Edition, MOP 92, provides a valuable update to reflect current and complete inspection, as well as grading protocol that offers logical step-by-step guidance for maintaining and improving the longevity of manhole systems.

North Dakota landowners battle over 2,000-mile underground pipeline project

North Dakota landowners testified for and against a carbon capture company’s use of eminent domain Friday, as Summit Carbon Solutions moves forward in constructing a massive underground system of carbon dioxide pipelines spanning 2,000 miles across several states and under hundreds of people’s homes and farms in the Midwest.

Arizona judge won’t compel Scottsdale to share water

An Arizona judge says she won’t compel Scottsdale to resume an arrangement that allowed residents of a neighboring community to get their water from a city standpipe, saying the flap isn’t the court’s concern.

Pennsylvania passes ‘forever chemicals’ drinking water limit

Pennsylvania has enacted a statewide drinking water limit on two forms of highly toxic chemicals, nicknamed “forever chemicals.” The rule applies to all 3,117 water systems, the Department of Environmental Protection said.

Wyoming’s water infrastructure rated “mediocre” by engineering group

(UI) — The Wyoming section of the American Society of Civil Engineers released the first Report Card for Wyoming’s Infrastructure on Tuesday, with the state’s drinking water and wastewater infrastructure receiving a grade of “C” and “D+”. According to the report, a C is considered “mediocre” while a D is “poor.”