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Words On Water

A podcast featuring conversations with influential and interesting people from the water sector and news from the Water Environment Federation.

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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Words On Water #132: Clean Water Act Regulatory Issues in a Pandemic

March 20, 2020 This episode is the audio from a Water EnvironmentFederation webcast. During the coronavirus pandemic, water and wastewaterutilities are currently triggering their response plans for continuity ofoperations. These events also trigger regulatory issues under the Clean WaterAct as utilities work to maintain compliance during this pandemic. Utilitiesneed to consider special conditions in their Consent Decrees and/or permits,consider regulatory obligations and maintain close contact with theirregulators. Speakers include Susan Sullivan, Executive Director of the NewEngland Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission; Fred Andes, Partner atBarnes & Thornburg in Chicago; Melanie Davenport, President of theAssociation of Clean Water Administrators and Director of the Water PermittingDivision for the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality; and ShellieChard, Director of Water Quality for the Oklahoma Department of EnvironmentalQuality. Episode #132


20 Mar 2020

Rank #1

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Words On Water #128: Coronavirus and Water Treatment

March 2, 2020 Dr. Rasha Maal-Bared is Senior Microbiologist at EPCOR and Scott Schaefer is Wastewater Practice Leader at AE2S and Chair of WEF’s Disinfection & Public Health Committee. In this episode Rasha and Scott discuss the coronavirus, its origin, and the agencies involved in response. They explain why the water sector should pay attention to coronavirus, how treatment addresses the virus, and that water workers should follow standard safety protocol. Rasha and Scott say the water sector should stay informed of developments but remain calm. Episode #128Hosted by Travis Loop


2 Mar 2020

Rank #2

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Words On Water #129: Tom Ferguson on Innovation and the Next Decade

March 2, 2020 Tom Ferguson is the Vice President of Programming for Imagine H2O. In this episode Tom explains that Water Innovation Week will be focused on “The Next Decade”, with an eclectic mix of water leaders, entrepreneurs, investors and more exploring what is possible for the sector over the next 10 years. Tom also gazes into his crystal ball to predict that by 2030 there will be significant investment in water, regionalization/consolidation of utilities, a flood of tech crossing over from other industries, and a heavy emphasis on communications and outreach. Episode #129Hosted by Travis Loop


2 Mar 2020

Rank #3

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Words On Water #117: Emily Feenstra on Stormwater in the Infrastructure Report Card.

December 16, 2019 Emily Feenstra is the Managing Director for Government Relations and Infrastructure Initiatives at the American Society of Civil Engineers. In this episode Emily discusses the decision to add stormwater to ASCE’s Infrastructure Report Card, particularly because of data collection by the Water Environment Federation and National Municipal Stormwater Alliance. She talks about the how the report card is produced and used, as well as the recent grades for water infrastructure. Emily also outlines how the report card has impacted public opinion, policy, and funding over the years. Episode #117Hosted by Travis Loop


16 Dec 2019

Rank #4

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Words On Water #118: Chris Hartman on Using the National Green Infrastructure Certification Program in Northeast Ohio

January 13, 2020 Chris Hartman is a Stormwater Technical Specialist with the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District. In this episode Chris discusses the important role of green infrastructure in Project Clean Lake, the utility’s program to reduce pollution to Lake Erie. He explains that NEORSD decided to utilize the National Green Infrastructure Certification Program for training on the design, installation, and maintenance. Chris says the use of NGICP has led to several people gaining jobs to maintain green infrastructure in the greater Cleveland community. Episode #118Hosted by Travis Loop


13 Jan 2020

Rank #5

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Words On Water #142: Ed Holmes on Developing and Supporting Young Professionals

May 11, 2020 Ed Holmes is the Director of Technical Training for DN Tanks. In this episode Ed discusses bringing students and young professionals into a company in a way that provides them with well-rounded development and integration into day-to-day activities. He shares his perspective on the strengths, interests, and motivations of today’s young professionals, and how they benefit a business. Ed also talks about the importance of lifelong learning in the water sector. This episode is brought to you by DN Tanks. Episode #142Hosted by Travis Loop


11 May 2020

Rank #6

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Words On Water #127: Julie Nahrgang on the Water Reality in Texas

February 24, 2020 Julie Nahrgang is the Executive Director of the Water Environment Association of Texas. In this episode Julie talks about the misconceptions and reality of water and environmental management in Texas. She discusses how the size and geographic diversity of the state feeds into challenges and opportunities. Julie also explains what is happening in Texas with communications, stormwater management, produced water from oil and gas, and workforce development. Episode #127Hosted by Travis Loop


25 Feb 2020

Rank #7

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Words On Water #119: Leslie Schehl and John Phillips on the State of Stormwater

January 21, 2029 Leslie Schehl is a Supervising Engineer at the Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati and John Phillips is Director of Integrated Watershed Management at Parametrix, as well as co-chairs of the 2020 National Stormwater Symposium. In this episode Leslie and John explain how climate change is altering rainfall patterns and posing challenges for stormwater management, particularly in the form of urban flooding. They talk about the adoption of digital technology across the sector and the rise of smart sewers. Leslie and John also discuss the ongoing issues of maintenance and funding of stormwater infrastructure. Episode #119Hosted by Travis Loop


21 Jan 2020

Rank #8

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Words On Water #130: Celine Hyer and Eric Bindler on Advanced Asset Management

March 4, 2020 Celine Hyer is the Water Conveyance Lead for Arcadis North America and Eric Bindler is the Research Director for Digital Water at Bluefield Research. In this episode Celine and Eric discuss how pressures mounting on utilities to address human-centric challenges around affordability and resilience mean new strategies are needed to optimize limited resources. They explain the ways an advanced asset management framework can surpass traditional limitations and narrow U.S. utilities’ funding gap by $62.4 billion over the next decade. Celine and Eric detail drivers and enablers of change, workforce impacts, and steps utilities can take to be fit-for-future and foster thriving communities. Read the paper on advanced asset management. This episode is brought to you by Arcadis. Episode #130Hosted by Travis Loop


4 Mar 2020

Rank #9