Discoverwaterloop: exploring solutions
waterloop: exploring solutions

waterloop: exploring solutions

Author: Travis Loop

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A podcast helping water leaders to discover solutions and drive change. waterloop is for people who work in water management, such as utilities, government, universities, engineering firms, technology companies, nonprofits, and NGOs. The podcast helps listeners to become more knowledgeable leaders, creators of change in communities, and builders of a sustainable and equitable water future. waterloop is hosted by Travis Loop, who brings two decades of experience in journalism and water communications, including at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
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This episode is part of a series The PFAS Puzzle: Lessons From A Contaminated Cape Fear. The forever chemicals were dumped in the North Carolina river for nearly 40 years before being discovered. The series explores how a community responds when it is the epicenter of PFAS pollution. This episode is about the science.Dr. Detlef Knappe of North Carolina State University is one of the leading scientists who found PFAS in the river and has conducted continued research on its presence. In this episode, Detlef discusses discovering the chemicals, identifying sources of the pollution, and sharing information with government regulators and utilities. He explains how PFAS levels have been lowered, shares the lessons he learned about research, and offers advice for communities with concerns about the chemicals.This series is sponsored by ALTRA, a company with the most robust PFAS treatment solution. Visit logistec.com/pfas-solutions/The series is sponsored by Black & Veatch, providing end-to-end consulting, engineering, and construction services to meet each community's unique PFAS needs. Visit bv.com/pfasThis series is sponsored by PFASComms.com, who makes utilities the trusted, go-to-source for PFAS information in the community. Visit pfascomms.com
How can the affordability of water bills be properly addressed without consistent and comprehensive data? New Jersey decided to get a clearer look at the situation. A state law now requires all water utilities to report on a monthly and zip-code basis affordability metrics including rates, customer bills, water usage, arrears, shutoffs, and tax liens sold on homes for non-payment. The law is discussed in this episode with Larry Levine, Director of Urban Water Infrastructure and a Senior Attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Larry also talks about the coalition that developed and lobbied for the legislation, how the law will be implemented, and NRDC’s affordability toolkit.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet helping water leaders to discover solutions and drive change. Visit waterloop.org
Nonprofit media outlet waterloop is expanding its coverage of solutions to today’s critical water challenges, including features on lessons learned from PFAS pollution in North Carolina’s Cape Fear River, options for funding the removal of lead service lines to protect drinking water, and visits with people leading change in disadvantaged communities. In this episode, waterloop founder Travis Loop discusses the expansion and also shares his professional and personal journeys that led to waterloop.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet helping water leaders to discover solutions and drive change. Visit waterloop.org
How does someone develop the mentality of a mentor and create opportunities for others? For Tim Alston it started in high school, when the people selected for a leadership program didn’t reflect the diversity of the student population. That sparked Tim to start a mentorship program for younger students of color in the local community and launched him on the path of helping others to enter STEM education and occupations. In this episode, Tim discusses what motivates him as a mentor and how he has encouraged minorities to pursue STEM at the University of Illinois, the American Society of Civil Engineers, and as a Plant Manager at the Gary Sanitary District. waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet helping water leaders to discover solutions and drive change. Visit waterloop.orgThis episode was made possible by support from Spring Point Partners.
During the last century, large engineering projects were used to control water resources. But in many ways, that man-made infrastructure is failing to meet challenges in the 21st century such as drought, flooding, pollution, and population growth.How can a pivot back to nature provide more sustainable solutions for water management?The nature-based approach is discussed in this episode with Sandra Postel, the author of Replenish and the Director of the Global Water Policy Project. Sandra discusses a variety of examples from across the U.S. of the benefits of nature-based solutions, including restoring the flow of rivers, putting watersheds to work, providing room for floods, and bringing down dams.waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet helping water leaders to discover solutions and drive change. Visit waterloop.org
#160: Hold The Salt

#160: Hold The Salt

2022-11-15--:--

In an increasingly thirsty world, there is much potential in desalination, the process of removing salt from seawater. But desalination has historically posed challenges - it consumes massive amounts of expensive energy, produces a waste called brine, and raises concerns about impacts on aquatic life. So how is desalination becoming more of an option for the creation of freshwater?That question is answered in this episode with Peter Fiske, Executive Director of the National Alliance for Water Innovation and Director of the Water-Energy Resilience Research Institute.Peter explains how desalination is becoming more efficient and effective through innovation in membranes, technologies for handling brine, and extraction of valuable elements. He also talks about upcoming pilot projects, the role of desalination in addressing Western water scarcity, and international collaboration.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet helping water leaders to discover solutions and drive change. Visit waterloop.org
In a recent poll, U.S. voters overwhelmingly agreed that water is a human right, clean waterways are important, and infrastructure investments are critical. While those results are encouraging, the real value of polls are in how they can be used to test language, create messages, and influence policy. That work is discussed in this episode with Nicole Lampe of Water Hub, Yasmin Zaerpoor of PolicyLink, and Jenifer Collins of the National Wildlife Federation. They talk about opportunities to use the poll results to shape specific policies such as jurisdiction of the Clean Water Act, financial assistance with water bills for low-income Americans, and the upcoming Farm Bill.waterloop is the podcast helping water leaders to discover solutions and drive change. Visit waterloop.orgwaterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.city
P3 involves a public agency partnering with a private entity on a project. A twist on the traditional public-private partnership puts the community first and focuses on its challenges and opportunities. This approach works particularly well with green infrastructure, as discussed in this episode with Dominique Lueckenhoff, a former water official for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and a Senior Fellow at the US Water Alliance. Dominique talks about the creation of community based P3s to advance green infrastructure as part of the Chesapeake Bay TMDL, beginning in Prince George’s County, Maryland. She also explains how Chester, Pennsylvania used the formula to establish a stormwater utility.waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet featuring conversations about solutions and science. Visit waterloop.org
2022 is the 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, which fundamentally changed regulation and management of water resources in the U.S. The Clean Water Act Owner’s Manual was created to help people understand and use the law to reduce pollution. The tool is discussed in this episode with Katherine Baer, Vice President of River Programs at the River Network, and Matt Rota, Senior Policy Director at Healthy Gulf. Katherine and Matt talk about how citizens own the Clean Water Act, using the owner’s manual to tackle specific problems, and the addition of climate change and environmental justice to the version released for the 50th anniversary. waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet featuring conversations about water solutions and science. Visit waterloop.org waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.city
Algae blooms that pollute waterways, produce toxins, and cause dead zones are one of the most widespread and challenging environmental problems in the U.S. Nitrogen and phosphorus from agricultural land is the leading fuel for the algae blooms, but efforts to reduce the nutrient pollution from farms have largely been unsuccessful.In this episode, Dr. Donald Boesch, President Emeritus of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, says it’s time to change the approach and create a national strategy for regulating agriculture pollution. Don talks about approaches for reducing the use of fertilizers, paying farmers for performance, stopping production of corn-based ethanol, and improving water quality as part of fighting climate change.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet featuring conversations about solutions and science. Visit waterloop.orgwaterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.city
Problems of environmental justice and water equity haven’t historically received proper coverage by traditional media. And if they did get in the news, chances are the reporter didn’t look like the impacted population. That’s changing in Baltimore and around the Chesapeake Bay, where a nonprofit is helping young people in communities of color to tell their stories. The Environmental Justice Journalism Initiative is discussed in this episode with its Co-Founders, Donzell Brown and Rona Kobell. They talk about teaching students from the city about environmental justice and how to produce stories about the issues. Donzell and Rona hope that the skills and experience the young people gain enable them to be effective advocates and potentially journalists for larger new outlets.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. Visit waterloop.orgwaterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.city
Despite the direct and often disproportionate impacts of water problems on Latinos in California, there was historically a lack of water knowledge and advocacy by the leaders in their communities. That led to the creation of an organization to educate and motivate Latino local elected officials across the state. This level of government is the closest to the people and the solutions, as discussed in this episode with Victor Griego, President and Founder of Water Education For Latino Leaders. Victor explains how the organization focuses on inspiring Latino leaders to care about water issues and giving them the leadership and storytelling skills necessary to create change.waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. Visit waterloop.org
Thousands of water utilities across the U.S. are smaller and under-resourced, often leaving them consumed by daily operations and unable to take on projects to increase efficiency and reduce costs. But external experts can help these utilities to triage pressing challenges and then turn to strategic improvements, as discussed in this episode with George Hawkins, CEO and Founder of Moonshot Missions. George talks about bringing his experience, including as the head of DC Water, and building a team to work with utilities and launch them on a path of progress. He also provides his take on infrastructure funding, consolidation, affordability, cybersecurity, and PFAS.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet featuring conversations about solutions and science. Learn more at waterloop.orgwaterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.city
Traveling presents the opportunity to make observations about many aspects of the world including about water. In this episode, waterloop host Travis Loop discusses his summer trip to Germany and a variety of ways that water caught his attention in cities such as Frankfurt, Stuttgart, and Munich. Topics include public refill stations, bottled water in restaurants, the presence of green roofs, and river surfing.waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. Visit waterloop.org
Artificial intelligence has emerged as a powerful tool in the fight to find lead water lines in the U.S., which could number up to 10 million and pose a threat to human health. The use of AI allows for much more accurate predictions of the location of lead lines by using a variety of factors such as the age of a house, size of the property, and prevalence in the area. This approach has helped cities like Newark, Detroit, and Toledo to dramatically reduce the time and cost of finding and replacing lead lines, as discussed in this episode with Eric Scwartz, CEO and Co-Founder of BlueConduit. Eric talks about how funding from the Rockefeller Foundation is allowing BlueConduit to provide free access to an inventory tool, launch a nationwide map of lead lines, and increase outreach to under-resourced communities. waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at Varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. Visit waterloop.org
Many of the one million people in California who lack access to safe and reliable drinking water are Latino agricultural workers living in small communities throughout the state’s Central Valley. Despite agriculture’s reliance on them as a workforce, the industry uses vast quantities of water and often pollutes resources. Change is difficult because these people are on the absolute bottom of the political pyramid and lack a voice in government, as discussed in this episode with Janaki Anagha, Director of Community Advocacy at the Community Water Center. Janaki talks about the need to focus on changing representation in local water boards and how her organization is helping to identify, train, and support people as candidates for political office.waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. Visit waterloop.org
Some coastal communities experience flooding of low-lying areas on sunny days due to exceptional high tides. The frequency and severity of these events, also called blue sky flooding or nuisance flooding, are increasing due to sea level rise and are projected to triple in the U.S. by the year 2050. Sunny day flooding is discussed in this episode with Miyuki Hino, an Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina. Miyuki explains a variety of the current research on the flooding, including her work in coastal North Carolina, and how the information is used to understand trends and help communities adapt. She also explains some of the response measures such as retrofitting infrastructure, using nature-based solutions, and employing managed retreat from flood prone areas.waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. Visit waterloop.org
As climate change and other crises strain water supplies, more attention is being paid to the water footprint, the amount of water used by an individual or household over a certain period of time. A water footprint includes the water that is directly used by taps, showers, toilets, and household appliances, as well as for outdoor uses. But the water used to make the food we eat, consumer products we buy, and energy we use is also part of a water footprint. The rise and importance of the water footprint is discussed in this episode with Kai Olson-Sawyer, manager of the Water Footprint Project for GRACE Communications Foundation. Kai explains how people can use the Water Footprint Calculator to learn about their personal consumption and shares ways that individuals can reduce their impact.waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at varuna.citywaterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. Visit waterloop.org
As an historic flood devastated Yellowstone National Park and downstream communities in Montana, the U.S. Geological Survey was busy measuring streamflows, monitoring equipment, sharing data, and even making repairs in the field. Early data shows the flood could be a one in 500-year event and the gauge just outside the park measured water levels 50 percent higher than the previous record. The role and response of USGS during these storms is discussed in this episode with Katherine Chase, surface water specialist at the USGS Wyoming-Montana Water Science Center. She says that trends show increases in peak flow over the years, a possible indication of how climate change is bringing more intense rainfall and melting snowpack more rapidly in the Yellowstone area. Katherine also talks about how to accurately describe the frequency of flood events and the ways USGS coordinates its science with other federal agencies.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. For all content visit waterloop.org waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at varuna.city
A new report finds that the 2.2 million people in America who live without running water or a toilet at home is costing the U.S. economy over $8.5 billion a year. The biggest impacts to the GDP come from lost productivity, time lost at work or school to access water, physical health impacts, water purchase costs, and mental health impacts. In this episode, George McGraw, CEO and Founder of DigDeep, discusses the report and how closing the water gap would generate $200 billion over the next 50 years. George also talks about recommendations to treat the water access gap as a crisis, refocusing federal funding, and building a domestic WASH sector.waterloop is a nonprofit media outlet. For all content visit https://www.waterloop.org waterloop is sponsored by Varuna, the tool that provides water utilities with full system awareness and offers a new resilience dashboard that identifies internal and external risks. Learn more at https://bit.ly/waterloopVaruna
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Comments (1)

nasrin attar

Thank you It was great talk.

Mar 23rd
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