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Pacific Northwest Agencies and Partners Announce Water Quality Trading Recommendations


Note: PCNWA2014 Keynote addresses will be about Water Quality Trading. Williamette Partnership Director Bobby Cochrane and WA DEQ's Helen Bressler will deliver the keynote presentations. Following will be a WQT panel discussion with Mr. Cochran, Mrs. Bresler, Mike McIntyre (Idaho DEQ), Alex Johnson (Freshwater Trust), Bob Baumgartner (Clean Water Services) and Robbin Finch (City of Boise). The panel is moderated by Tom Dupuis (HDR Engineering).

On Aug. 18, the Willamette Partnership, Freshwater Trust, and U.S. EPA Region 10, as well as water quality agency staff from Idaho, Oregon, and Washington released draft recommendations on water quality trading approaches in the Pacific Northwest. The recommendations are based on the group’s evaluation of policies, practices, and programs across the country. The analysis helped the groups identify some common principles and practices to guide consistent approaches to water quality trading in the region. Pilot projects are expected to begin in Oregon, Idaho, and Washington this year.The documents produced from this process are not guidance or policy, so respective state participants choosing to develop trading guidance or rules do so according to their individual state processes.

Water quality trading is a market-based approach to achieving water quality goals for pollutants such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and temperature. Through trading, some permitted emitters with high costs of reducing pollution are able to negotiate equal or greater pollution reductions from sources with lower cost. This effort focused specifically around trading between nonpoint and point sources.

Establishing a credible water quality trading program is not simple and trading may not be appropriate for many water quality problems. However, when designed well and combined with other tools, participating states believe that trading can help achieve water quality goals in a way that is consistent with the Clean Water Act, avoids localized water quality problems, is based in sound science, provides sufficient accountability that water quality benefits are being delivered, and is beneficial for the environment, landowners, and communities. The group is releasing the draft recommendations document, “Regional Recommendations on Water Quality Trading,” with an accompanying joint statement of support from the states and a letter of support from U.S. EPA Region 10. Read more.

CDC preparing Ebola guidance for wastewater sector workers

To address the concerns and questions from the water sector, many water and public health organizations, including the Water Environment Federation (WEF; Alexandria, Va.), have been seeking reliable and credible information on Ebola. While currently there is limited data on the fate and transport of Ebola in wastewater collection systems, developing protective precautions is prudent. To that end, these organizations have been in contact and conversation with appropriate federal agencies on the issue of wastewater worker safety and the inactivation of Ebola by wastewater treatment processes.

During a conference call, organized by WEF on Oct. 16, a spokesman for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shared that CDC has prepared and is conducting an internal review of an interim guidance. The guidance, Interim Guidance for Workers Handling Untreated Sewage from Ebola Cases in the United States, will address basic hygiene practices and personal protective equipment (PPE) use and disposal actions that should be taken.

Specifically this guidance will provide guidance and protocols for

  • workers who perform sewer maintenance
  • construction workers who repair or replace live sewers
  • plumbers
  • workers who clean portable toilets.

 CDC stated that this review would expedited and indicated that guidance could be released as soon as late October. As CDC is the lead federal agency for Ebola containment and prevention, the best ongoing resource for information is

In the meantime, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has some general guidance available on workplace safety and health related to Ebola at

WEF will communicate any updates as soon as CDC releases the guidance or any new information becomes available.



Golf & 5K"RUN for FUN"  Registration is still open

PNCWA2014 Scholarship Fundraising Golf Scramble - learn more or register for it! 

PNCWA2014 Scholarship Fundraiser “Get out and RUN for FUN 5K”  - learn more or register for it!


General preregistration for PNCWA2014 is closed. You may register onsite.



The River Rangers (left) from Clean Water Services, and the Poo Fighters (right) from King County excelled in the Operations Challenge Competition at WEFTEC14. The Clean Water Service team finished 3rd overall in Division II, and the King County team finished in the top 12 overall of both Division I and II teams. Both teams were representing PNCWA, having qualified for the opportunity to compete at WEFTEC by competing and placing highest at the PNCWA conference last year in Bend, OR. The winning team or teams from PNCWA2014 in Vancouver, Oct. 26-29, will have the opportunity to compete at WEFTEC next year. For PNCWA2014, going for repeat wins will be the Clean Water Services River Rangers, and the King County Poo Fighters, while the Oregon Region House Divided, and the Bend OR Mud Hogs will be looking to make inroads into the Operations Challenge successes of the more established teams. If you wold like to know more about how Operations Challenge showcases the skills and knowledge of professional Operators, find out more at If you would like to know about Operations Challenge within PNCWA, contact Chad Clay, Operations Challenge Committee Chair (and proud member of the King County Poo Fighters) at


Preconference Workshops Announced:

Law & Odor – Why and How to Keep Your Neighbor Happy

Sunday, October 26    8:30 am–4:00 pm
Cost (lunch included): $100 Members, $115 Nonmembers

Sponsored by:    PNCWA Odor and Air Quality Committee

Moderator:    Miaomiao Zhang, CH2M HILL

Speakers:    Dirk Apgar, King County Wastewater Treatment Division
        Frank Dick, City of Vancouver WA Public Works
        Richard Finger, Self-employed Consultant
        David Kopchynski, Parametrix

Managing Activated Sludge for Optimization

Sunday, October 26    9:00 AM–5:00 PM
Cost (lunch included): $100 Members, $115 Nonmembers

Sponsored by:    PNCWA Plant Operations and Maintenance Committee

Moderator:    Marcos Lopez, Tetra Tech

Speakers:    Sue Lawrence, City of La Center WA            
James Santroch, Tetra Tech
Sean Scuras, Tetra Tech

Developing a Hierarchy of Assets around Functional Systems

Sunday, October 26    9:00 AM–4:30 PM   
Cost (lunch included): $100 Members, $115 Nonmembers

Sponsored by:    PNCWA Asset Management Committee

Moderator:    Marc Yarlott, Veolia North America

Speakers:    Robert “Dave” Coffman, Veolia North America
Melissa Demsky, Veolia North America        
Richard Ludlow, Oak Lodge Sanitary District


Climate Adaptation Planning: Simple ways to make sure your utility is ready for the challenges ahead

Sunday, October 26    1:00 PM–5:00 PM
Cost (lunch included): $60 Members, $75 Nonmembers

Sponsored by:    PNCWA Sustainability Committee

Moderator:    Cyndy Bratz, Bratz Environmental Engineering

Speakers:    John Abatzoglou, University of Idaho
Michael Cox, EPA Region 10
John Dummer, Clean Water Services
Charles Luce, US Forest Service
John Phillips, King County
Spencer Reeder, Cascadia Consultants  
Lara Whitely Binder, University of Washington


Special "Math for Operators" Workshop to run concurrently Wednesday Oct. 29

Teaching Operators Math:  An Infallible Technique Bridging Problems to Solutions

Wednesday 8:00 am–3:00 pm     $75 (lunch included)

  • Water/wastewater treatment plants are getting increasingly sophisticated as their importance in protecting human and environmental heath continues to grow. The nexus of this societal imperative is the water/wastewater treatment plant operator.
  • With so much at stake, operators must master the science and math of water/wastewater treatment.
  • The intent of this workshop is to give operators the tools and techniques to solve water/wastewater math problems that are direct, unfailing and easily understood.
  • The knowledge gained will also assist operators in passing on these techniques to their co-workers.
  • Eric Wahlberg from Brown and Caldwell brings the worlds of process engineering/plant operations and learning/knowledge in a package that will not disappoint

Read more here:
Read more here:




The Water Environment Federation and PNCWA are committed to spreading the word about the value and importance of water.  WATER’S WORTH IT, a new campaign from the Water Environment Federation (WEF) aims to raise awareness about the value and importance of water, water-related issues, and the water profession. We encourage you to learn more about this exciting new effort and how you can help WEF be a voice for water. Learn more....




Website Sponsors

Tertiary Sponsors and Website Sponsors:
HDR Engineering
Northwest Pump & Equipment
Kennedy/Jenks Consultants

Secondary Sponsors and Website Sponsors: 
Tetra Tech
RH2 Engineering

GE Wate

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Copyright 2003-2014 Pacific Northwest Clean Water Association l PNCWA is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization.
 PO Box 100, Hansen, ID 83334 l Tel: (208) 455 8381; Fax: (208) 455-8381