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Posts Tagged ‘EPA’

How a tech startup and nimble non-profit exposed toxic releases during the Houston flood

Thursday, October 5th, 2017
Bakeyah Nelson with the Air Alliance Houston checks air measurements with Entanglement Technologies

As Hurricane Harvey bore down on the Texas coast, Tony Miller, chief executive of a Silicon Valley startup, wondered how he could help. His company, Entanglement Technologies, can measure levels of air pollution in real time, important information for emergency responders and people living near storm-damaged refineries and chemical plants. On Aug. 31, Miller called Elena Craft, Environmental Defense Fund’s Texas-based senior health scientist, and the two quickly came up with a plan to monitor neighborhoods near industrial facilities in and around Houston. Miller was on the road the next day.

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New funding now available for water infrastructure projects

Wednesday, August 2nd, 2017
Mayor Kevin Faulconer at the Advanced Water Purification Facility. Photo by Chris Jennewein

Created three years ago and finally funded this year, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program may soon announce the first round of funding for water infrastructure projects. The agency has $1.5 billion in available funds and it is all designated for water projects.

The EPA announced that 12 of the 43 public entities submitting letters of interest for project funding from the WIFIA program have been approved. These applicants may now move through the program and apply for low-interest loans.

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The Scoop on Stormwater

Friday, July 21st, 2017

Stormwater runoff is a major cause of water pollution in urban areas. When rain falls on our roofs, streets, and parking lots in cities and their suburbs, the water cannot soak into the ground as it should. Stormwater drains through gutters, storm sewers, and other engineered collection systems and is discharged into nearby water bodies. The stormwater runoff carries trash, bacteria, heavy metals, and other pollutants from the urban landscape. Higher flows resulting from heavy rains also can cause erosion and flooding in urban streams, damaging habitat, property, and infrastructure.

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Threats on Tap: Widespread Violations Highlight Need for Investment in Water Infrastructure and Protections

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017
nrdc figure 1

This report expands our analysis beyond lead to examine all drinking water contaminants regulated under the SDWA. Much as Flint is not the only water system with lead problems, we have found that Lead and Copper Rule problems are far from the only widespread violations of drinking water rules. Our research shows that in 2015 alone, nearly 77 million people were served by more than 18,000 community water systems that violated at least one SDWA rule, and there were more than 80,000 violations of SDWA rules that year. These violations included exceeding health-based standards, failing to properly test water for contaminants, and failing to report contamination to state authorities or the public.

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Water Infrastructure: Information on Selected Midsize and Large Cities with Declining Populations

Thursday, October 20th, 2016
Figure 1: Location of U.S. Cities with 2010 Populations of 50,000 and Greater That Experienced a Decline in Population from 1980 to 2010

Many midsize and large cities throughout the United States, including the Midwest and Northeast, have lost a substantial percentage of their population. These cities face the challenge of a corresponding decline in utility revenues from a loss of ratepayers, which makes it difficult to address their water infrastructure needs. Overall, water and wastewater utilities across the United States face substantial costs to maintain, upgrade, or replace aging and deteriorating infrastructure—approximately $655 billion for water and wastewater utilities over the next 20 years according to EPA’s most recent estimates.

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What’s In Your Water? Flint and Beyond

Monday, July 4th, 2016
NRDC - Drinking Water Pipes

NATURAL RESOURCES DEFENSE COUNCIL (NRDC)
While Flint represents a clear case of extreme lead contamination, it does not have a monopoly on serious lead problems. In order to evaluate the national extent of violations of the Lead and Copper Rule, NRDC has obtained official EPA violation and enforcement records. We have conducted extensive data analysis, using geographic information system (GIS) mapping software to highlight and map the scope of lead-related issues in drinking water systems across the United States.

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Atlanta, GA: Making a Visible Difference in the Proctor Creek Watershed Through Information and Data

Monday, June 27th, 2016

Description: EPA is working to bring focused attention and coordinated action in more than 50 environmentally overburdened, underserved, and economically distressed communities. This involves listening to community leaders and residents to understand their needs and then working with local, state and other federal partners to leverage our collective resources in support of local goals. In […]

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The State of the Air 2016

Monday, April 25th, 2016
Figure 1: Air pollution emissions have dropped steadily since 1970 thanks to the Clean Air Act

AMERICAN LUNG ASSOCIATION
The “State of the Air 2016” found continued improvement in air quality in 2012–2014, showing lower levels of year-round particle pollution and ozone. Still, more than half of all Americans—166 million people—live in counties where they are exposed to unhealthful levels of these pollutants.

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Helena, MT: Redeveloping Brownfields

Tuesday, March 8th, 2016

Laura Erikson, Community Development Coordinator in Lewis and Clark County, MT discusses how EPA is making a visible difference in Helena, MT. EPA Brownfields funds were used by the County to investigate contamination at a site that was regarded as the most blighted property in town. After completing the environmental assessment, the Montana Business Assistance Connection, with help from the City and EPA, was able to purchase the site and restore it to residential use standards. Today it is ready for redevelopment. Ms. Erikson explains what the newly cleaned site will mean for the community, calling it a “catalyst” that will benefit the whole area.

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Wasted: How to Fix America’s Sewers

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016
Figure 1: U.S. Combined-Sewer Systems Serving Populations of 50,000 or More

MANHATTAN INSTITUTE
The biggest capital project, by far, in many American cities is one that few of their citizens even know about and that almost none has ever seen: the legally mandated retrofitting of “combined sewers,” sewers in which storm-water runoff and sanitary waste from buildings are channeled into the same pipes to reduce or eliminate overflows of untreated wastewater into local waterways.

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