Regulatory

Washington Watch: Pipeline customers press pricing reduction initiatives

Pipeline customers have stimulated a two-pronged political attack on interstate pipeline pricing directed at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and Congress.

Calgary declares state of emergency over water pipeline repairs

The city is grappling with a severe shortage of water caused by a recent breach in its main water pipeline, prompting urgent appeals from Mayor Gondek to immediately reduce water consumption.

Biden administration invests $242 million in Western water infrastructure amid severe drought

The Department of the Interior announced a $242 million investment as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, aimed at enhancing water storage and reliability in Western communities.

Oregon utility regulator rejects PacifiCorp’s bid to limit wildfire liability in lawsuits

Oregon utility regulators have rejected a request from PacifiCorp that sought to limit its liability in wildfire lawsuits. Under the proposal, PacifiCorp would only have been responsible for paying out actual economic damages in lawsuit awards.

EPA steps up efforts to address leaking underground storage tanks nationwide

For more than a decade, some residents of the tiny Richmond, Rhode Island, neighborhood of Canob Park drank and bathed using tap water that had been tainted by gasoline that leaked from storage tanks buried under service stations a few hundred yards from their homes.

Massachusetts senators secure wins in water infrastructure bill

The bipartisan legislation, which authorizes U.S. Army Corps of Engineers projects vital for the nation's water infrastructure, includes several crucial provisions addressing local needs in Massachusetts.

Manure spill in Wisconsin raises environmental concerns but drinking water remains safe

A manure spill in west-central Wisconsin has raised environmental concerns, though state regulators assure drinking water supplies are unaffected. DNR officials said they didn’t have an estimate of how much manure has been spilled.

Wisconsin Senate overrides Evers veto, advances PFAS pollution funding

The Senate voted to override the veto of a bill that would have created grants to spend $125 million fighting pollution from “forever chemicals” known as PFAS.

EPA finds no evidence of racial bias in Mississippi's water funding for Jackson

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says it found “insufficient evidence” that racial discrimination shaped decisions made by two Mississippi agencies about water system funding for the state’s majority-Black capital city of Jackson.

Wisconsin Senate plans to vote on overriding Evers veto of PFAS funding, other bills

Republicans said Monday that the state Senate would vote to override up to 36 of the governor’s vetoes, including a bill to fight PFAS pollution — moves that Democrats derided as desperate election year stunts.

Guam contractor faces $1 million fine over repeated trench safety violations, OSHA investigation reveals

Giant Construction Corp., a Tamuning contractor, is under fire with over $1 million in penalties after federal inspectors discovered trench workers exposed to fatal hazards.

Colorado’s Larimer County commissioners greenlight Thornton water pipeline project

On May 8, Larimer County commissioners unanimously granted approval for Thornton City's 10-mile pipeline project, marking a breakthrough after years of contentious debate and legal battles.

Nassau County legislators approve $15 million sewer infrastructure investment

The Nassau County Legislature's Rules Committee unanimously voted on May 6 to allocate nearly $15 million for sewer system upgrades within the 11th Legislative District, announced Nassau County Legislature Minority Leader Delia DeRiggi-Whitton.

Court affirms FERC approvals for gas pipeline expansion in Louisiana and Mississippi

A U.S. appeals court has upheld federal endorsements for a natural gas pipeline expansion initiative in Louisiana and Mississippi, dismissing claims from environmental advocates regarding inadequate scrutiny of its environmental impact.

Sandy, Ore., expands sewer capacity following EPA approval

Sandy, Oregon, has received approval from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for a significant increase in its wastewater system's capacity, marking a crucial milestone for the city's infrastructure development.

New National Security Memorandum aims to safeguard water infrastructure

(UI) — Recent cyber-attacks on water systems have underscored the urgent need for coordinated action to protect public health and the environment.

Tyler City Council updated on sewer system rehabilitations under Consent Decree

The City Council of Tyler, Texas, recently received a comprehensive update from Pipeline Analysis LLC regarding the ongoing and future rehabilitation plans for the city's sewer system as mandated by the Consent Decree.

Interior Department launches collaborative initiative to boost tribal water, sanitation infrastructure

The Department of the Interior's Bureau of Reclamation and Indian Health Service unveiled a collaborative initiative aimed at bolstering safe drinking water and community sanitation infrastructure projects across Indian Country.

California rejects bill to crack down on how utilities spend customers’ money

California lawmakers on Monday rejected a proposal aimed at cracking down on how some of the nation’s largest utilities spend customers’ money. The bill failed to pass a legislative committee for the second time in the face of intense opposition from utilities, including Pacific Gas & Electric.

Washington watch: Pipelines concerned about Biden EPA methane fee proposal

The proposal divides the natural gas industry into three separate baskets, each with a different equation for determining the fee. Natural gas compression facilities and gas transmission pipelines are in the same category and the fee would be assessed when emissions exceed 0.11 percent of the natural gas sent to sale “from or through” the facility.

Insights and trends: Latest developments in utility and communications construction

The beginning of 2024 is shaping up to be just as dynamic as we had expected going into the year. The election stage is set for November, the Federal Reserve is trying to thread the needle between fighting inflation and making the “soft landing,” and most distressing, we all witnessed a terrible tragedy in the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore.

EPA classifies PFOA and PFOS as hazardous, water infrastructure faces Superfund cleanup

Designation as a hazardous substance under the Superfund law doesn’t ban the chemicals, known as PFOA and PFOS. But it requires that releases of the chemicals into soil or water be reported if they meet or exceed certain levels.

EPA finalizes PFAS contamination rule to clean up contaminated drinking water systems nationwide

This final action will address PFOA and PFOS contamination by enabling investigation and cleanup of these harmful chemicals and ensuring that leaks, spills, and other releases are reported. This action builds on the recently finalized standards to protect communities from PFAS contamination in drinking water.

Federal court denies tribes’ bid to halt $10 billion transmission line project in Arizona

A federal judge has rejected a request by Native American tribes to stop work on a $10 billion transmission line being built through a remote southeastern Arizona valley that will carry electricity from New Mexico to California.

California sets long-awaited drinking water limit for ‘Erin Brockovich’ contaminant

California regulators voted Wednesday to establish a drinking water limit on hexavalent chromium, a toxic chemical compound made infamous by the movie “Erin Brockovich.”

Wisconsin Republicans ignore governor’s $125 million proposal to combat ‘forever chemicals’ in groundwater

The moves are the latest twist in the ongoing stalemate between Evers and the Legislature over the best way to combat PFAS chemicals that have polluted groundwater in communities across the state.

Arizona introduces legislation to protect critical water infrastructure from cybersecurity threats

The legislation establishes a new governing body, the WRRO, with cyber and water infrastructure expertise to develop and enforce cybersecurity requirements for drinking and wastewater systems. The WRRO will work in partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ensure cybersecurity measures are both practical and beneficial.

EPA fines California's East Bay cities, utilities over sewage discharges

The EPA and the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board have announced fines totaling $372,876 for sewage discharge violations in the East Bay. Penalties target EBMUD and six cities for failing to prevent untreated sewage from entering San Francisco Bay.

Study reveals presence of 'forever chemicals' in New Mexico water sources, prompting EPA action

So-called forever chemicals have been found in water sources across New Mexico, according to recent studies by the U.S. Geological Survey and state environment officials.

Fire in Mexico City's storm drain highlights underground infrastructure strain amid water shortage

Amid a severe drought in central Mexico, water authorities grapple with mounting challenges, including a recent fire in one of Mexico City's storm drains, highlighting the strain on underground infrastructure. Struggling to address the water scarcity, authorities have decided to halt water extraction from the Valle de Bravo reservoir, home to an upscale lakeside community.